Tuesday, February 10, 2015

10 Ways to Improve your Homeschool...

An article caught my eye last week and I had to share it here! So much of it goes along with our philosophy at BFB and I know you'll enjoy reading it. Pam Barnhill writes at edsnapshots.com and her article "The 10 Best Things You're Not Doing for Your Homeschool" is great! And, if you're using BFB, you're probably doing most of the things already, but it's always affirming to have someone let you know you're on the right track.
There were a couple of points that really stood out to me and I'd like to quickly summarize them here.

"Resign yourself to the fact that read aloud time does not have to be quiet and serene to be effective. Set up some simple rules like ‘you are free to play with any quiet toy as long as you are listening’ and ‘keep your hands to yourself.’"

This is so true and something my family struggled with along the way. When you're doing your read aloud time it's often really helpful to provide a hands-on project for busy little people. We often encourage parents to allow their youngsters to color during read-aloud time. In our Early American History programs students are often instructed to color pages photocopied from the read-aloud books. This is an easy way to occupy those restless little hands. Other children need to build towers and cities so having legos or block available will make read-aloud time more enjoyable for everyone.

I also love Barnhill's encouragement to moms to become livelong learners themselves. As a mom myself I know that more than anything else my example is what will stay with my children when they grow up. Our children are mirrors that show us our own hipocracy and failings more clearly than anything and if we want to grow a love of learning in them, we have to love learning ourselves. Beyond that, Barnhill points out that always learning reminds us of the difficulties involved in that process:

"In addition to modeling learning, the act of learning ourselves reminds us of the difficulties of being a student. As I struggle to learn to knit I have a greater empathy for my kindergartener struggling with letter formation. I am reminded of how difficult learning a new skill is and how often I need to practice with patience to master it."
I would highly recommend taking some time and reading through the entire article. You'll be encouraged and reminded of why you homeschool in the first place. 

All quotes and image from: http://edsnapshots.com/homeschool-success/

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  1. Thank you, Rebecca, for sharing this article. You were right! I found myself encouraged and reminded of what I love about homeschooling.

  2. I found myself becoming impatient with my son learning how to ride a bike. Fast forward to my husband getting me a bike for my birthday and after having not been on one for years I was struggling to get my bike skills back. I won't be so impatient with my son learning to ride his 2 wheeler again. Things that seem so simple for us adults are still new and challenging, it's easy to forget how much work goes into processing and mastering new skills like reading, writing, and speaking.