Ideas for Relaxed Summer Homeschooling
Summer is almost here….who’s ready for a break?!
It can be so tempting to just not doing anything during the summer months, but then you also run the risk of your kids forgetting a lot of what they learned this year.
A relaxed Summer homeschooling schedule is the perfect solution to this problem!
I used to see it all the time as a public school teacher….I would spend so much of the first month or so just reviewing things the kids learned the year before. But, it was math and so much of it built on what they “had already learned”.
I knew I wanted to avoid this issue with my kids, so, while we don’t officially do school year round, we do have some school all through the year.
Today, I’d like to share some ideas that I plan to do this Summer (and a few I plan to keep in my back pocket for when the girls are older). Let’s get started!
First and foremost….
I know, that just takes all the fun out of it right there, doesn’t it?! If this is supposed to be relaxing, then why do I have to plan ahead?
Well, you might want to plan specific projects or activities that happen only on certain dates.
So, check dates for festivals, museums, trips, etc. and block them on your calendar. This way 1) you won’t forget and 2) your calendar doesn’t get overly full.
Now, onto the fun stuff! Here are my top ideas for relaxed Summer homeschooling.
Ideas for Reading
Do a reading program. This might be a list of books you choose for your child. It could be certain authors. Maybe you make a chart and your child writes down the title of each book they read by themselves and then there is a celebration. If your child is older and the books are longer, you could do “read a certain number of minutes per day” and do a celebration after so many days.
A celebration doesn’t have to be huge. It could be go to the playground, go out for lunch, go swimming, or go to the children’s museum, or go get ice cream.
Go on a picnic….with some surprise books. My kids love when I read books to them while they eat. A few times when the weather has been nice we will have a picnic and I’ll bring some books outside and read to them. They love it! you could just do a picnic in your yard or you could take a picnic to a nearby park.
Field Trip Ideas
Field trips are so much fun! But, during the school year, I find that sometimes it can just feel too hectic to get everything done and go on all the field trips.
Summer is a great time to schedule all those fun field trips that you didn’t have time for during the year.
Make a museum list. Make a list of all the area museums that you’d like to visit and start checking them off. There are so many obscure museums around that you are sure to have some nearby that you might not even know about!
Visit a local fire station or police station. This is one I’d like to do with my girls this Summer. Young children love to meet real life community helpers and check out all their neat equipment and vehicles.
Visit a farm. If you live in an area where you have access to family farms, this could be an option. You could call them, or take the modern “no person to person contact” approach and message them on Facebook. Many family farms are more than happy to show school children around.
Visit a farmer’s market. Farmer’s markets have become very popular in recent years, so many areas have at least one. Where we live, we are lucky to have a few to choose from. A farmer’s market is a great way for kids to talk to farmers and see different crops with which they may not be familiar. It also lends itself very easily to conversations about plants, health, the environment, and more!
Fun, Yet Schooly
Sometimes, there is a particular subject or even that we.just.didn’t.get.to. Right?!
Summer is a perfect time to go back and check off that unit or topic. Or maybe it’s a skill your child needs to work on (or you want them to work on).
Do one topic per day. This is a great way to keep up with the knowledge your child gained in the previous year or catch up if you feel they are behind. It could be as simple as doing a math worksheet in the morning or looking at some life science books from the library. Doing one subject per day is a great way to make progress and feel relaxed at the same time.
Complete some STEM challenges. Problem solving is such a great skill to instill in your children. In fact, it’s one of the top sought after skills of job recruiters!
You could give your kids some painter’s tape and paper towel tubes and let them build their own marble run. Or give them some Lego challenge cards. Or take the STEM outside and have them create a bridge from object they find in the yard. Get creative. Or look on Pinterest for some inspiration!
STEM Challenges can be a lot of fun for groups, so this would be perfect to get ready ahead of time and then invite some friends over to work together (or compete)!
Create some lapbooks. Lapbooks are fun for kids of all ages. And you can customize them to suit your child’s interest. If there is a topic you missed or a subject that needs to be revisited, make a lapbook out of it and your kids won’t even know they are learning! Grab some of my free life science lapbooks here.
Do a project you didn’t have time for. I’m not talking history paper here.
Maybe you missed the human body with your child – you could make a life size one and label different body parts.
Maybe you need to dig into Eastern civilizations – doing it through cooking!
Do you have a high schooler? Summer is a great time to do some career profiles. Maybe there are some local professionals who would be willing to talk to your child about their career path.
Listen to school. Audio books and podcasts are a great way to learn about lots of things. We like to listen to The Story of the World in the car. We also listen to children’s books and podcasts. Some of our favorite podcasts are Circle Round, Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls, and Story Pirates.
Whether you choose one of these ideas or put a few on your calendar……Let it be fun! For you and for your kids. Don’t schedule too much. Plan easy dinners. Relax.
Summer homeschooling can be a great time, so enjoy it!