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I haven’t written a lot about homeschooling, regardless that it’s a huge a part of my household’s life, as a result of I didn’t assume it will curiosity most of you.
When an image of our homeschool room grew to become the hottest image I’ve shared on Instagram, a lot of you requested particulars about particular elements of the image, so I made a decision to put in writing about our homeschool classroom.
I hope that a number of the suggestions on this put up will probably be useful to you, even when your children will not be taught at residence.
I’ve two kids who’re technically beneath “school-age,” and lots of the issues I’ve in our classroom are there to interact their creativity and hold them busy whereas the older children be taught. These actions can be useful for youngsters who aren’t of college age but, however nonetheless wish to be concerned within the studying course of.
My Homeschool Classroom Philosophy
One of many many causes we determined to homeschool our kids is that we felt we might give them a extra detailed and numerous training than they might get in a typical college system.
In brief, my philosophy is that studying occurs 24/7 with kids, and that whereas we would concentrate on particular subjects throughout sure elements of the day, we train them on a regular basis.
We tie in features of the Montessori educating technique, together with a few conventional studying curriculums (this one and this one are the 2 we’re presently utilizing) and plenty of hands-on actions and area journeys. Whereas I like the Montessori philosophy, we spend an excessive amount of time exterior within the treehouse, going for walks, and enjoying than sitting within the classroom every time we will. We additionally attempt to enable the kids to have some autonomy in selecting the precise actions that they do and the topics they be taught first every day.
We additionally incorporate journey into our studying every time attainable, as kids be taught way more from visiting a spot or tradition than they might from merely studying about it.
So whereas I like our little classroom, I additionally actually love the time we spend studying exterior of it.
Setting Up Our Homeschool Classroom
As we put together to start college this yr and I arrange the classroom, I’m sharing my private homeschool concepts, so I hope you’ll share yours within the feedback so we will all be taught from one another.
Our homeschool room displays the range of studying strategies we use and the range of ages we train. My kids are all presently beneath 10 years of age, so clearly, a a lot totally different atmosphere can be wanted for older kids.
I adopted the thought of “Workstations” that’s in style in Montessori colleges in establishing our classroom. My objective was to have totally different stations that my kids might rotate to and every have their very own area for unbiased studying.
These are the “Stations” now we have and the way we use them:
- Leaping station: I’ve discovered that particularly for energetic boys, motion really improves studying, slightly than stifling it. The truth is, sitting for too lengthy in a single place shortly makes them bored and inattentive, whereas having the ability to transfer helps them focus. I’ve used rebounding for well being for years, and I like that youngsters can use it as an indoor train whereas studying (and this builds on the Montessori concept that motion enhances cognition). We primarily use the mini-trampoline (or rebounder) to allow them to bounce whereas we learn, train a lesson, or whereas quizzing them on spelling, multiplication tables, and many others. It’s also an excellent place for them to maneuver round throughout breaks, particularly when it’s raining exterior.
- Studying Station: Pictured above within the prime picture on this put up, the studying station is somewhat space with three beanbags for sitting on to learn. That is used for unbiased studying or finding out and is an effective break from sitting in chairs.
- The Little Children Station: The favourite spot of the beneath 5 crowd, this mini-table is a refurbished outdated espresso desk that misplaced a leg and that we rescued and refurbished. The highest has a ledge so small items received’t fall off, and the floor is roofed in chalkboard contact paper in order that they will observe writing on the desk itself. That is one in every of two stations particularly for the little children and the chairs are mini-sized as properly. See extra element under for the precise actions now we have at this desk.
- College Cupboard and Instructor Station: We discovered that having the college books in an open area the place the children might entry them always led to little children attempting to be taught like the massive children by changing into inquisitive about books. Our resolution was an outdated cupboard (technically a kitchen island) that we discovered at a salvage retailer. We put in little one locks on the doorways and now every little one has a cubby inside the cupboard for books. We open it throughout college and return the books after college time. This additionally minimizes the mess. The highest of the station is residence to trainer provides, our college plant and a few flash playing cards. See extra element under.
- The Workbook Station: The older kids take turns working at this desk with one in every of us at a time, and whereas we strive to not sit for very lengthy, a desk is a superb place for the required guide work or take a look at.
- Art work Show: A buddy made these cute art work show boards they usually assist hold a deal with on the quantity of treasured art work on the partitions at any given time. Every little one has one “clip” and may show a bit of art work or one thing they’ve labored on in class that week. It’s only a board with some heavy steel clips that say “Look What I Did..”
- Studying Station Storage: I listing a few of our particular studying stations under, however these bins include units of flash playing cards, beading actions for little ones, lacing playing cards, artwork provides, and Montessori studying stations. We additionally hold the few toys that now we have in these bins (legos, blocks, and many others).
- Little Child Play Station: A play space for the little ones. A kitchen set with wood toys, an artwork easel for portray, drawing with chalk, whiteboard writing and different actions. Extra under.
- Acrobatic Station: (Not Pictured) Hanging within the door of our classroom is a Gorilla Gymnasium (the perfect Christmas current we’ve ever gotten for our youngsters). This indoor playground is actually an excellent robust pull-up bar with 5 attachments for play and train. The pull up bar is powerful sufficient for adults to make use of, however a swing, a climbing rope, rings, a trapeze and a ladder might be added for the kids to play. It is a nice station for them to get their vitality out or swing whereas listening to a lesson or a language CD.
- E-book Station: (not pictured)- A easy bookcase of books that the kids can entry any time.
Extra element on the assorted stations….
The Little Child Studying Stations
Lots of our little child actions are saved within the bins on the opposite aspect of the classroom and never pictured, however a few of their favourite actions are:
- Sorting Beads: I’ve a number of dozen wood beads that I’ve painted in varied colours. The little ones can type these into little wood bowls which are painted the identical coloration.
- Threading Beads: I take advantage of extra of those painted wood beads in a station the place little ones can thread beads. They use shoelaces to string the beads in varied patterns.
- Sandpaper Letters: They’ve lowercase letters and uppercase letters on playing cards made out of sandpaper. This offers them a tactile expertise of studying the letters they usually actually get pleasure from it. I do know many mothers who make these letters out of index playing cards and sandpaper, however that is one exercise I selected to purchase to avoid wasting time preparing for college.
- Lacing Playing cards: One other favourite exercise for little ones… you possibly can completely make these out of cardboard and shoelaces, however our youngsters received this set as a present and it has been nice for college.
- Counting Stations: For studying numbers, now we have a number of actions: A magnetic studying maze (nice for motor expertise and counting), A depend and kind, the abacus, and quantity rods.
- Blocks: They get pleasure from these blocks full of coloured sand so as to add one other sensory factor.
- Shapes and Fractions: We have now playing cards and drawing modules for this, but in addition this Fraction Motion Board, which we additionally use to show the older ones fractions.
- Puzzle Stations: We have now a field filled with age-appropriate puzzles for little ones. They particularly like this skeleton flooring puzzle for studying the bones of the physique.
- Arts and Crafts: After I’m feeling particularly courageous/loopy, now we have portray, coloring, modeling clay and reducing stations for them to make use of. These are usually a particular deal with since they require extra cleanup, however we attempt to do these a pair occasions every week.
- Picket Animals: I received a giant set of these non-toxic wood Animals toys as a child reward and they’re one of the vital performed with actions for teenagers. They draw footage of surroundings to play with the animals on, make child garments to decorate them up in, and match them to their zoo animal playing cards. These are additionally nice to place within the diaper bag for church and different quiet occasions.
- Studying Station: One other favourite is a bin of board books and sensory books particularly for little ones. They like having their very own books and “studying” them. Additionally they have their private books that I make for them every year with footage and reminiscences from the final yr they usually love trying again over these reminiscences and asking about them.
- Music Station: Numerous wood musical devices for music time. We even have opera and classical music CDs for studying about music all through historical past. Opera is the little child favourite at our home.
We attempt to encourage the children to solely use one station at a time and clear it up earlier than shifting on to a different. I’m not a Montessori perfectionist, and at occasions, a number of stations will find yourself out at one time, however basically, the thought of stations cuts down on mess. The remainder of the little child station features a kitchen set with wood meals (one other Christmas reward) and an artwork easel (additionally a Christmas reward)…
Massive Child Studying Stations
As I discussed, we attempt to facilitate as a lot studying as attainable exterior, whereas touring or whereas shifting, however we do comply with a hands-on curriculum for the older children. I’ve arrange studying stations for them as properly, they usually rotate in order that we will train all of them simply.
The stations for the older children embody:
- College books: Stored in out college cupboard, these college books and workbooks are the core of the curriculum we use.
- Geography Station: The globe and massive maps are used when educating about geography and we even have puzzles, colorable maps, and matching video games for this.
- Language Stations: This yr, we’re educating the kids Italian since it’s a part of their heritage. We have now Little Pim Language Set for the littles and Rosetta Stone for the older ones. My husband teaches this topic since he speaks some Italian.
- Phonics and Studying Stations: I take an uncommon method to language and phonics. Whereas educating the fundamentals of phonics and studying, I additionally use flash playing cards that I’ve made from the 100 most used phrases within the English language and flash playing cards of English From the Roots Up- Greek and Latin Roots (which I discovered in class myself and which I credit score partially with my excessive rating on the SAT). The greek and latin roots assist them perceive language as they be taught extra advanced phrases and make it simpler to determine what longer phrases imply.
- Lego Containers and A whole bunch Boards: Primary lego blocks are nice for educating counting, fractions, stacking and different quantity associated actions. We additionally will incorporate these into topics like historical past (letting them construct fashions of historical buildings) or science.
- Horticulture Station: We haven’t planted our crops for the yr but, however now we have indoor crops, herbs and greens that the kids have a tendency throughout college every day. We additionally do experiments with sprouting seeds and planting for the backyard to assist them find out about this.
- Artwork Stations: Pure paints, coloring, clays, glue and scissors that we use for varied actions.
- Science Experiments: We have now varied palms on experiments and stations for studying chemistry, biology, physics, and many others. and the supplies for these are saved within the bins as properly. Some favorites are the anatomy fashions we use for educating biology, and the physics experiments.
Homeschool Classroom Ornament
The decorations in our classroom are quite simple. I’ve some homeschooling buddies whose lecture rooms are awe-inspiring, however I didn’t have the time/vitality to create every little thing from scratch and opted for some fundamentals from the native trainer provide retailer.
We have now a easy alphabet poster across the prime of the room and varied studying posters that I modify out all year long.
As soon as we start college, most decorations are art work or college work the children have accomplished and it adjustments continuously.
Actual Life Studying:
As necessary as structured studying is, my favourite factor to show (and possibly their favourite factor to be taught) is what I name “Actual Life Studying,” or classes that assist present actual life expertise.
This can be something from coming to the shop and farmers market with me and serving to decide which meals are the perfect deal (per ounce), making tinctures or salves with me, happening a nature hike and studying about wildcrafting or some type of health.
I attempt to contain my children in actions like cooking dinner, doing laundry, stitching on buttons, and even balancing the checkbook (for the older ones) as these are sensible expertise that they may completely want someday, it doesn’t matter what profession or additional training they select.
The truth is, many of the recipes on this weblog are ones that my kids helped me with indirectly.
I’m sharing our classroom for informational functions. I’m not an skilled by any means and am studying as I am going. Additionally, lest anybody assume that our residence and classroom all the time appears this neat, the lecture room is organized proper now as a result of we haven’t begun our yr college but. 🙂
Whereas we intention to maintain issues this clear and arranged, it doesn’t all the time occur throughout college. I additionally try to be affected person each single day throughout college and that doesn’t normally occur both. 🙂
The system, stations and notes above are optimum for our college system, however on no account do all features of this occur completely on daily basis. Like parenthood, homeschooling is a shifting goal that appears to be continuously adapting and altering. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all method. Preserve experimenting till you discover the perfect homeschool schedule and set-up for you!
I hope that a few of my suggestions will probably be useful to you, and I’d love to listen to a few of your prime suggestions for homeschooling or educating your kids as properly.
Do you homeschool? What does your homeschool classroom seem like? Have you ever discovered any suggestions, tips, or hacks that make the educational course of simpler?