Learn how to start homeschooling over the summer, so that when the school year begins, you are ready to dive in to a normal homeschool schedule.
I remember when I first started homeschooling, I wanted to do all the things RIGHT AWAY! But, I had no clue what I was doing and I spent hours staring at homeschool catalogs wondering which curricula would be the perfect fit for our family.
Thankfully, another homeschool mom told me it might take a while to get my bearings and that I needed to have some patience with myself and ease into real homeschooling.
Summer is the perfect time to dip your toes into homeschooling without diving headlong into the deep end of homeschooling! (Do you like my lovely summer metaphors?!)
How to Start Homeschooling in the Summer
STEP 1: Start with Fun!
The most important thing to keep in mind when beginning to homeschool is to start with fun. Not only does your child need this, YOU need this!
If you start your homeschooling adventure with the boring stuff (and believe me, there IS boring stuff), both you and your child will wonder why you are ruining summer this way.
So, look for interesting summer science projects, unit studies that incorporate math, literature, and crafts, put together a Nature Bag and go exploring, or simply choose a book series to read through during the summer.
READ > Summer Homeschool Plans
Or LISTEN >
- Science Pinterest Board
- Unit Study Pinterest Board
- A Summer of Playing Skillfully
- Free Summer Science Bundle
- Five in a Row Literature Based Unit Studies
- Ruby Reads Read-Aloud Posters
Learn how to create a Nature Bag
STEP 2: Choose a Time for Summer Learning
One great way to start your brain thinking in homeschool mode is to choose a time of day as learning time. That is where your fun “school” projects will go during the summer months.
Choosing a time and then learning to stick to it will help you when it’s time for the homeschool year to start and you have more subjects to add in. You won’t necessarily have homeschool at the same time you choose for summer learning time, but you will have already dabbled in putting schoolish things into a schoolish timeframe.
STEP 3: Observe How Your Children Learn Best
The great thing about summer is that everyone is relaxed and you are better able to see what kinds of topics and learning styles spark your child’s attention.
Whenever you try a project, read a book, or do a worksheet, pay attention to how your child responds. Do they groan when you bring out the workbook pages? Do they love when you supplement with a YouTube video? Do they thrive on conversation or prefer to quietly create in their own space? Noticing these things will help you in your quest for homeschool curriculum that fits your child’s needs.
If your kids loathe worksheets, avoid workbooks.
Do they want to touch everything and get up and move around a lot? Make sure you look for something that involves kinesthetic learning (hands on learning).
Do they like to draw and doodle on their pages? Consider adding in regular art classes or choosing a curriculum that includes art in their options for learning.
I created a free worksheet to help you understand your individual children and how they learn best.
GET YOUR FREE WORKSHEET!
Understanding Your Child Worksheet
- You ARE an Artist Clubhouse Membership (great for summer!)
- Garden, Ocean, or Sky Guides from The Peaceful Press (we LOVE their products and there are MANY more Guides than the ones listed here!)
LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST >
STEP 4: Observe Your Favorite Subjects and Teaching Style
Have you ever considered your own preference when it comes to teaching and learning? What subjects are you strong in? Which ones make you want to hide in the closet? Do you like to chat it up with your kids? Are you a crafty kind of mama? Do you like the straight-forwardness of a workbook? Do you like fun projects?
It’s important to consider who YOU are when it comes to homeschooling your children because you will want to capitalize on your strengths and outsource your weaknesses. Summer is a great time to learn more about yourself!
For more on this topic:
LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST >
What Homeschool Curriculum Works for Homeschooling in the Summer?
Some of you might be thinking, “Just tell me what to do this summer!” Ok, fine – I’ll give you some ideas, but please note that there is no one right curriculum, and there is no one right way to homeschool. And you will make mistakes.
Try different things and remember to have fun!
My Summer Recommendations for Preschool and Early Elementary:
- A Summer of Playing Skillfully
- The Peaceful Preschool (and other titles by this company!)
- Rod & Staff ABC Series (Mennonite, but really great activities!)
- Reading Eggs App (Get a FREE 30 Day Trial!)
My Summer Recommendations for Elementary:
- Reading Eggs and Math Seeds (FREE TRIAL)
- Projects from Pinterest
- Free Unit Studies (here’s a HUGE LIST!)
- Ruby Reads Read-Aloud Posters (choose a book, buy the poster, have fun!)
My Summer Recommendations for Jr. High and High School:
- Khan Academy Computer Coding (Free)
- Photography Classes from Lenspiration (use code: ARROWS for 30% off monthly membership!)
- Filmmaking Class from Compass Classroom
- Free Latin Classes from Compass Classroom
If you are looking for specific recommendations, feel free to send me an email (click on the envelope icon at the top of the page). I’ve been homeschooling for 17 years, have graduated 2 of my 10 children, and 1 of those is now a college grad! I’ve also worked with hundreds of homeschool companies, so I’m familiar with a lot of the resources out there!
And if you are trying to get your child “caught up” in a certain subject this summer, take a look at my post: Can You Homeschool an Entire Grade Over the Summer. It is full of helpful ideas that help you cram a lot of learning into a few short months!
Finally, I want you know that homeschooling is a marathon, not a sprint. It will be full of starts and stops, mistakes and wins. It takes a lot of hands-on involvement to educate your child, but once you’ve learned to think outside the box, you’ll never want to go back!
Find more homeschooling information on The Homeschooling Mother page of this blog!