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Maybe you’re thinking to take the summer off from homeschooling? But let me tell you why you might want to continue right through the summer.
There are many reasons to do homeschooling during the summer such as letting mom get a rest, connecting with the family, and letting dad get involved in homeschooling. Summer homeschooling can be fun, laid back but still engaging. Focus can be field trips, project-based, and home improvement activities.
There are so many ways that you can still keep your children engaged and learning that it really depends on your family’s interests. Sure, time is a factor as well but let me share some things that we do.
Let Mom Get a Vacation and Dad Takes Over
If the mom is the main homeschooling parent involved, then summer homeschool is perfect to get the dad involved in the curriculum. Fathers can play an important role in homeschooling and he might have fun! But with proper planning, you can schedule a fantastic time with the kids and let mom get some much-needed rest for the upcoming semester.
If dad can take the lead for the summer it would certainly be helpful for the mom to relax and do something herself. In our family, I (the father) do homeschooling during the summer. My wife joins us occasionally for a lesson during the week but it’s leisurely. She focuses on her things and I handle the kids for the summer. I plan, and do lessons as well as ferry them to soccer practice and games. My wife gets to do as she likes but she joins us for family activities and trips.
Connecting With Family During the Summer
Connecting with the extended family is a great way to continue learning through the summer. We live near the grandparents and they are always so happy to get a chance to take the kids for a vacation or to spend time at their palace. We feel this is so important and let me tell you why. Last summer we spent nine weeks in Florida with my folks and it was so helpful! My youngest son took an interest in reading with my mother.
At first, he was just learning how to read. But my mom’s rules are that if you want to watch any TV, you had to do an equivalent amount of time reading. I remember this annoying rule she had, but it works wonders. My son picked up reading and since then he loves to read all by himself every morning after he wakes up.
Connecting with family during summer homeschooling was invaluable for my son to pick up good habits and learn so many things with his grandparents. It sounds like a vacation, but remember that you are homeschooling and this is a way of life. We find creative and fun ways to help our children learn at every possible moment. Learning when they don’t even know it is the secret to life-long learning skills!
Project-Based Learning with Dad
A project-based learning opportunity with dad is another super way to let your child learn some valuable skills around the house. I can tell you from my own experience that when I was a kid we restored an old 1965 Corvair. Working on that car taught me so many skills that I still have. I know how to take apart anything in the car and fix it. If my car breaks down or has some funny sounds, I know if the mechanic is trying to work me over.
Working on that car was a full-time project, even though he didn’t formally homeschool me. Restoring it was like going to a vocational school for years. We had to learn how to find the right tools, parts, and machine shops to restore that old car. I know not everyone wants to restore a car, but that was something my dad was interested in and I’m sure there’s something other dads can work on with the children as a part of summer homeschool.
Take a Weekend Trip Away or Go Camping
Another nice way to learn with dad is to take a weekend trip to visit a national park or historical site nearby. Have your child and dad plan, research, and book everything for the weekend. If it’s a road trip, use Google Maps and check the route. Will you take some bikes? If so you can check the terrain and see how steep the ride will be.
We also wrote a helpful article about how Google Maps can be a useful addition to your homeschool routine.
A camping trip can also be the perfect project to put your kids on with dad. They can plan the trip to go with some other friends and spend some time in the wilderness, fishing, camping hiking, and enjoying the great outdoors. Of course, if the mom is interested take her along too! But make sure the whole process is handled by your child with dad!
Summer Swim Program with Dad
Another great opportunity to homeschool with dad is for him to teach your child how to swim. If you have older kids, how about some competitive swimming? It takes patience to teach kids how to swim but it’s well worth it.
Last summer I taught my son how to swim in 2 months. We started with him being afraid to even get his head and ears underwater. After we got him acquainted with being in the water, breathing through his mouth, and blowing from his nose he learned pretty quickly.
I also got some simple sinking toys that he loved to go underwater and collect. Little did he realize this was all about him learning about how to go underwater and build up his confidence.
Now my son is almost 8 and he can easily swim and survive if he fell into the water. He is gradually learning how to do the breaststroke, freestyle, and backstroke.
Attending Music Class or Join a Band
Is your child or your spouse musically inclined? If they are that’s great, then look to join a music program or join a band if you can. The summertime is the perfect way to add music to your homeschool program. If you never thought about music in your homeschool, then please read this other helpful article we wrote to get you on your way!
There is plenty of time and if you don’t have any idea about what type of instrument to play. Our son picked up the electronic drums last year, and we feel it’s the best instrument to start as a homeschooler. Why? Well, it’s quiet because it’s electronic, and he can use earphones to listen as he practices. So it won’t disturb the whole family. And they are easy to set up and don’t require any tuning! To learn more please read our article about that as well, my wife is a music teacher.
Join A Cooperative For A Summer Class
How about joining a summer cooperative and letting dad participate? A summer co-op may be the perfect way to get some social time and meet other homeschooling families. Co-ops also offer an outlet to take some classes you wouldn’t normally have access to like music, art, coding, and programming.
A church co-op we joined gives us access to a few things we wanted. You can find secular co-ops as well, but we were considering bible study for kids, prayer time, group worship, and Sunday school band. We feel this is an invaluable chance for our son to join a band and play music together. We wrote an informative article about why we think joining a band is so helpful in homeschool.
There are co-ops for almost every need. Search for a Facebook group or a quick Google search of “Co-ops near me” and you can find something in your neighborhood. One other well-known cooperative is called Classical Conversations. This organization has been around since 1997.
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