To my new homeschoolers: Don’t feel the need to overcomplicate things and make a minute by minute plan of the entire school year this very second. Major on the majors. All the details will fall into place as you focus on the essentials of a good education:
Readers are leaders and there is no greater indicator of success than someone who is well-read. Read aloud to them and have them read independently, as many hours in a day that you can. If your kids are voracious readers, you could almost skip the rest of this list, it’s that powerful.
This is taking what they’ve read and heard and thought about and pushing it back out in the form of words and sentences. Find as many ways to have them write things in the context of real life. (Lists, journals, notes, even social media.) Just like when they were toddlers, ask them to “Use your words” 🙂
Copying/copywork is totally allowed if they don’t know what to write. Dictation– you speaking what to write – is also a fantastic way to grow writing skills. Or have your kids tell you their story, you write it down, then they copy their own words.
Younger students can always benefit from reviewing basic math facts/terms and there are a million ways to do that. Hand-on math always trumps paperwork. The more they see math with their hands when they are young, the better they can handle abstract concepts when they are older. Older students should be learning how to use their math skills to solve problems in their world. (Is $20 enough for both of you to pay for lunch? What is 30% off of 17.99 for this shirt you want?)
Kids should spend plenty of time observing the natural world. Get them outside as much as possible. (Double whammy, reading while outside 😍) Interacting with plants, animals, natural materials, and trying to figure out why the world works the way it does. Let them be curious. Sitting and staring at the sky counts.
5. Social studies.
People are naturally interested in other people. Talk about alive and dead people and why their lives and ideas are significant. Tell stories. Talk about other places. When you hear of a new place, find it on a map. Talk about current events and that should keep you busy for a long time 😂
Bonus: Larry and Kathy Troxel’s Geography CD. My kids and I learned the geography of the whole world after listening to that CD a couple thousand times:)