Homeschooling can be challenging, but because of the freedom allowed, such as not waiting for everyone in class to finish a subject, the students sometimes find themselves finishing classes early. Many children will still want to do something. Below are some free things to do when kids finish their homeschool lessons early.
- Do crossword puzzles, word searches, or other pencil word games. These stimulate the brain, which is excellent for comprehension skills.
- Take a nature walk. Try to reference something from recent studies. If that isn't possible, teach a lesson about what you do see.
- Play flashcard games. These can help to keep current lessons fresh in the mind. Flashcards can be made for any subject using index cards. Just cut them in half for a more convenient size.
- Make and play a homemade learning game together. Games can be made out of many different things. For a jumpstart on homemade math games, try these free, easy and effective math games for kids.
- Play educational software on the computer or online educational games. Educational games can stimulate the brain and some games can even teach new things.
- Visit a local library and attend storytime. This will not only be fun and educational, but it's a great opportunity for socializing with other children. Library storytime is often very interactive, requiring children to work together.
- Do extra language or math worksheets. This might sound hard to believe, but my children actually enjoy worksheets and sometimes ask to complete more than what were assigned in these areas.
- Practice handwriting skills. Having good handwriting skills can help your child immensely. Daily practice can be very useful. If you already practice this every day, a little extra time will be even more beneficial.
- Write a story. Writing is an essential life skill that should be practiced regularly.
- Keep a calendar of free events, festivals, and activities going on in your area. Check your calendar when the kids finish early to see if there's something you can surprise them with. Many cities also have free educational activities and classes available at universities, libraries, museums, churches, hospitals, parks, and more. Some are even especially for homeschoolers. Always check the paper and surf the internet for free offerings so you can keep many items on your calendar.
- Read a book. Reading stimulates the mind. In fact, there has been recent research showing that reading regularly is one of the very few ways to create new brain cells.
- Draw a descriptive picture of something recently learned. Putting thought into pictures helps improve comprehension, as well as enhance creativity and imagination.
- Watch an educational video.
- Do some of the next day's work. This will build confidence in children because they will learn they can do anything if they put their mind to it.
- Call around and see if any museums or zoos are offering a free day. If they are, take up the opportunity.
- Have a picnic (lunch or snack) and reading circle at the park or in your backyard.
- Go to the YMCA open gym. This will be free if you're a member. If you're not a member, the fee is minimal.
- Ride bikes to a local nature spot. This could be a large park, mountains, bayou, or any other area where wild animals might reside.
- Tour a neighboring city. This will require gas money and possibly money for food, but is relatively close to free.
Remember that learning can come in many forms. Keeping an open mind is essential to running a successful home school. You don't always have to spend money to learn. There are educational opportunities all around us. Also remember that it's okay to finish early and just let the kids play sometimes, too. After all, they did earn it by working so hard to finish early.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Has your child always had a love for books? Is there a large number of homeschoolers in your area (or do you know a good amount of homeschooling families)? If you can say yes to both of these, then starting a homeschool library would be a good idea for a library lesson, as well as just to create a great sharing resource for homeschoolers.
Getting Prepared to Create Your Library
First, sort through all the books and schooling equipment (microscopes, globes, overhead projectors, digital cameras, video tapes, cassette tapes, cd's, dvd's..) in your house and find the ones that are not special to anyone, meaning it would be alright to lend them out. Shelf, organize, and store those together in an area of your house that you will feel comfortable with people walking through. First floor walk-in closets or unused utility rooms are good for this or you can even just use a designated corner of any room where you feel comfortable placing the bookshelf.
Simple Ways to Collect Items for Your Homeschool Library
Next, you will need to contact everyone you know, asking them if they have any books, materials, or equipment they are not using that they could donate to the library. Then, while you are waiting for everyone to deliver their collections, visit local church sales and garage sales and buy books with low prices. You can usually find books priced at 10 cents to 50 cents at these events. Sometimes local libraries hold sales as well. Some even sell entire bags full of books for only a couple bucks. Be sure to search for educational materials as well as just regular books to read and be sure you have all ages covered.
Completing the Set-Up of Your Library
Once your collection is complete, either make or buy book pockets for checking out books and labels to place on the books that tells people the books belong to your library. Once you have all the books labeled and pocketed, you are ready to start checking out items. Be sure you also have a poster that clearly states your policies, including late fees and times allotted for material usage.
How to Share Your Library, if Desired
Let everyone know when your library is ready. You can even have a "grand-opening" check-out party with snacks outdoors and book checkout indoors. Advertising the library and grand-opening is a great way to meet other homeschooling families, as well as create more customers for your library. This can be done by printing up fliers and placing them in local churches, libraries, homeschooling bulletin boards, and other places people with children frequent. If you post them on a library bulletin board, remember to get permission. Some libraries may consider you to be competition, so be courteous. You can also open up the library to other parents, not just homeschoolers. Have fun with your ideas. The possibilities are endless.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
As parents, students, and teachers research education from many angles, home school is becoming a more popular option. With that growing popularity comes many questions and concerns. Also, a study has been released that shows students in homeschool again scoring much higher than public school students. Here is a collection of resources on some common myths and questions associated with homeschool.
Why Don't Home School Parents Teach in a School Building?
With more people homeschooling, some people may wonder if homeschoolers should buy big buildings together. So, why don't homeschool parents form a school?
Can Someone Other Than a Parent Legally Homeschool a Child?
When making the decisions involved in the homeschool choice, some will wonder what teaching options are available. One possible question is whether another adult, besides the parents, can legally homeschool a child.
Home School Myth: Homeschooled Students are Unprepared for College
A common homeschool myth is the one that assumes children who are educated outside of a traditional school setting will be unprepared for the academic challenges of a college. Here we will explore that myth.
Home School Help: Dealing With Negative Reactions to Your Choice
When a parent chooses to home school, that decision is generally one of great importance to them. Unfortunately, not everyone will always agree on this issue, leaving most parents who homeschool vulnerable to questions, as well as disapproval by some.
Can a Parent be a Homeschool Teacher Without a Degree?
Schooling children at home is becoming more and more prevalent as parents look at a variety of schooling options for the children. A question that comes up often when choosing to homeschool is the question of whether a parent can really become a child's teacher.
Home School Myth: Homeschooled Teens Can't Get a High School Diploma
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. It is often assumed that homeschoolers won't be able to receive a high school diploma.
Home School Myth: Kids Who Homeschool Have Poor Social Skills
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One myth that is very often assumed of home schooled kids is that they do not have proper social skills.
Child Struggling in School? Why You Should Try Homeschool
Do you have a child struggling or failing in school? Have you tried the options available (extra help at school, tutors, etc) with little to no success? Many parents and children struggle with this issue daily. Could homeschooling be the answer for your family's situation?
Homeschool Myths: Parents Who Homeschool are Rich
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One homeschool myth is the concept that families who choose to school at home are rich.
Homeschool Myths: Home School Parents Think They Know Everything
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One myth that is often brought up to homeschoolers is the "know-it-all" myth.
Homeschool: Custom VS Pre-Packaged Curriculum
Deciding whether you'll go with a customized curriculum or a pre-packaged one for homeschooling your child can be a daunting task. Here are some things to consider to help make that choice easier.
Homeschool Myths: Home School Kids are Too Lazy for Real School
There are many myths surrounding homeschool. One of those myths is that of laziness on the child's part. Some feel that a child who home schools is too lazy to complete real schoolwork. Is this really true?
Homeschool Myths: Home School Parents are Just Lazy
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. A common myth that seems to follow many parents who decide to homeschool their kids is the concept of laziness.
Homeschool Myths: Homeschooled Kids are Truant
Many questions and myths seem to follow the topic of homeschool. One topic that frequently comes up during conversations about home school is the one of truancy. It is often perceived that a child who is homeschooled is (or should be) counted as truant.
Homeschooling to Get Positive Social Interaction?
For so many years, choosing to educate children from home was looked at as stripping away their social interaction. However, many homeschooling families will argue with that fact, and for good reason. Here is a newer, more positive look at socialization and homeschool.
Preparing For Homeschool: Frequently Asked Questions
When you make the choice to homeschool your children, there are many questions that will be in your mind. As a mom who has homeschooled, I now know the possible answers to many of the questions you may have on your mind.
Is Homeschool the Best Title for the Education Method?
Homeschooling is many things. But, does it have the correct title? This title implies that schooling is done completely at home, which is very far from the average "homeschool".
Public School, Private School, Homeschool, or...
Choosing the right type of school for our children is a very difficult decision. This decision will ultimately determine your child's success in the future...First, we must remember that each family and child is unique and has differences that play a role in this decision.
Gym Class Ideas for Homeschooling Families
Families who are homeschooling will benefit from these, but they are also great ideas for playing outside with the kids in general, especially on the weekends.
Homeschooling: Enhancing Social Skills
Homeschooled kids have a variety of options for enhancing social skills. Many of the parents that only homeschool inside simply don't know how else to do it. Now, if you are one of the parents that has no clue or just want to learn more, read on.
Why Does Anyone Homeschool Anyway?
Well, I can't tell you why everyone else homeschools, but I can tell you about our decision to homeschool and why we thought it was the best choice for our family.
~ The author is always open to questions and discussion. Please feel free to express your thoughts and concerns.
*This is not a complete guide on homeschooling, nor is it meant as legal advice. Always check with your state's education agency for up to date laws and do the proper research for questions and concerns.
**I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
LAST UPDATED 5/15/2021
If you're thinking about or have decided to homeschool, you likely are wondering about homeschool laws. What are the legalities and where can information be found? Each state in the US has a different set of rules. The following information should help guide you toward the most current information.
One place to learn about homeschool laws is through your state's education department. When people think of the Department of Education, they may not necessarily be thinking about homeschool. But this agency should have access to the most current information regarding homeschool.
The Homeschool Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) also can be extremely helpful when it comes to learning about homeschool laws. They even have a state by state breakdown of the legal options. In addition, they also can be very supportive to homeschool families who have been legally wronged.
Can a Parent Be a Homeschool Teacher Without a Degree?
Schooling children at home is becoming more and more prevalent as parents look at a variety of schooling options for the children. A question that comes up often when choosing to homeschool is the question of whether a parent can really become a child's teacher...
Can Someone Other Than a Parent Legally Homeschool a Child?
When making the decisions involved in the homeschool choice, some will wonder what teaching options are available. One possible question is whether another adult, besides the parents, can legally homeschool a child...
Homeschool FAQ: Common Myths and Questions
With growing popularity comes questions and concern. A new study has been released that shows homeschool students again scoring much higher than public school students. Here is a collection of some common myths and questions associated with homeschool...
LAST UPDATED 5/15/2021
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