We homeschool our children, David and Loralei, with a hands-on, child-led approach. They take many classes and go on 8 to 10 field trips (or outings) a month. I strive to expose them to great literature and authentic learning experiences rather than workbooks and seatwork. Not sure what I mean? The following examples may help:
Gather information about sea turtles.
Visit a sea turtle rehabilitation center.
Record observations in science notebook.
Create a lapbook about sea turtles.
Gather information about honey bees.
Visit and talk with a local beekeeper.
Make bee crafts such as beeswax candles.
Share facts learned via a blog or website.
Gather information about manatees.
Visit a natural manatee refuge.
Write a letter to lawmakers thanking them for
making laws to protect the manatee.
Read “Little House in the Big Woods.”
Visit a pioneer village or museum.
Learn to churn butter and make candles.
Create a lapbook about Pioneer Life.
Gather information about space.
Visit Kennedy Space Center or planetarium.
Develop a model of the solar system.
Go stargazing and record observations.
We absolutely love homeschooling and feel that this eclectic approach that emphasizes life learning is the right fit for our family. Our children are active learners and don’t even think we’re “doing school” because they’re engaged in what we’re doing.
I recently returned to graduate school and have been finding that I need more time to complete assignments than I expected. As a homeschooling mom, I am with them 5 days a week, so finding those extra hours to study can be challenging. When I heard that SPARK Family Enrichment Center in Winter Springs was going to be doing a new Lifeskills class for homeschoolers on Fridays, I decided to give it a try. I was excited about the fact that I’d be able to have a few hours to study while they learn to sew, cook, and more at Spark.
Last Friday was our first week, and I’m happy to report that they had a blast! They learned to sew and even made their own pillows. They also made quiche and learned some French terminology. They also participated in a drama class (with costumes) that encouraged imaginative play and cooperation. I feel that this class falls right in line with our homeschool philosophy. I like knowing that they’re learning so much while having FUN. The fact that this class provides me with a few ”kid-free” hours once a week to work on papers and do research is just the icing on the cake.