Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Homeschooling Post

With the formal school year winding down I have been thinking a lot about our adventures in schooling this year. We started out in the norm... waking up at 7:15, hurry through breakfast, lots of chaos and stress, going to a public school with a great reputation, homework and PTO meetings... even though my heart told me that this wasn't right for our sensitive, dreamy eyed oldest girl.

Today we have an eclectic, non-conforming routine that involves weekly library trips, singing scales in the car to teach music, throwing bananas at knives to demonstrate gravity and velocity,  and go more with the flow of life. It is wonderful, scary, funny, frustrating, fun, tiring, challenging and rewarding everyday.

What I enjoy most though is the HUGE amount of resources available for kids to learn from, not just homeschoolers. There are so many great places that supplement an education... here is a quick list of some of our favorite tools, site, and books!

Gabby is really into birds so we are participating in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's Celebrate the Urban Bird study. You sign up, they send you a kit, and then you get to bird watch and send in your observations. A great introduction to nature studies.

Polymers are pretty interesting for kids and this is a great experiment to do that looks at color and polymers.

Reading is a huge part of our day and now you can register your homeschool in the Pizza Hut BOOK IT! program. Yay for books and pizza!

Speaking of books, we love the "You Wouldn't Want to be..." series! The books introduce periods of history in ways that interest and engage kids, plus shed some light on some pretty overlooked people... I definitely wouldn't want to be a servant in the Victorian era- yuck!

Another cool series is the "See Inside" ones by Usborne. So many flaps to look at and another interesting way to look at the body, how things work, and inside buildings.

Science really interests Gabby so I think that this homemade Lava Lamp experiment is perfect to try!

Artistic ChemistryBut my favorite site for getting worksheets, experiments, poems, writing exercises and more is Education.com. It is a great site, easy to navigate, and has tons of worksheets to help introduce concepts which we then apply to the real world.

So that is where we are with our homeschool... it is a great experience and I know Gabby loves it because she asks to do "school" stuff. Be sure to check the Homeschool Links tab at the top, I try to add sites and such that help me as I see them!  Cheers!
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