Homeschooling your kids may seem like the perfect solution at first, until you realize it’s not that easy to engage a bunch of 6-year-olds for longer than 5 minutes at a stretch. So you might be in search of creative homeschool ideas to make homeschooling fun and boost their engagement.
Even with older kids, creating an engaging homeschool environment could work wonders for their attention and involvement, making it easier for them to absorb their lessons.
Free Homeschool Resources for All the Basics
Fortunately, there are plenty of free homeschool resources and tools that can help you do just that. This post provides you with some creative remote learning ideas and tips that teach you how to make homeschooling fun and engaging for your kids.
1: Homeschool Time Management – Wyzant
Time management will be one of the top “lessons” when you’re learning how to homeschool. This can be one of the trickiest parts about K12 homeschool because you need to follow a homeschool schedule to maintain some structure. At the same time, you don’t want to keep things too rigid that your kids end up bored and disengaged.
To make things more fun, set up a routine board for everyone to see. Add some fun to it with colored pens, stickers and illustrations. This not only helps you stay organized and productive, but it also establishes and clarifies expectations so your kids can stay motivated as well.
2: Getting Kids Involved in Daily Planning – The Deliberate Mom
One of the best ways to get your kids more engaged is by making them feel invested in the planning process. Give them ownership over the experience by getting them involved in the daily routine planning. This isn’t to say that you should give them control over the entire homeschool schedule, but rather than you should help them understand who they are as learners and discover what motivates them.
3: Teaching Goal-Setting – Homeschooling Ideas
Inspire your kids to develop big dreams and goals for the future. This will give them the motivation they need to engage with homeschooling lessons. You could build vision boards highlighting what they’d like to be good at, how they’d like to feel and so on.
4: Motivating Them with Rewards – Sonlight Blog
There’s nothing like positive reinforcement to motivate kids and a reward system should definitely be a part of your homeschool checklist. Consider rewarding your kids with things like extra recess and extra screen time or motivating them with timed goals. You could also have a reward tracking system such as a sticker chart, which could be highly motivating, especially for younger kids.
Homeschool Resources for Hands-On Activities
Getting kids involved with learning outside of their textbooks is a widely recommended tactic for homeschooling. Remember: learning isn’t just memorization, tests, and times tables. The flexibility of homeschooling invites activities like the ones below to invest students in the stuff they’re learning in a hands-on way.
5: Fun and Educational Games – Our Journey Westward
Games can add a fun element to learning experiences, which makes them perfect for creative homeschool teaching. They can be a great way to get fidgety minds to focus on important information and lessons. From logic and critical thinking games to math and history games, you can find lots of educational games to implement in your homeschool curriculum. Our Journey Westward has put together an expansive resource for educational games across various subjects as well as logic and critical thinking games.
6: Simple Science Experiments – Homeschooling-Ideas
When it comes to science, there’s nothing like hands-on experience to nurture learning and instill knowledge in a young learner’s mind. Conduct easy science experiments at home to align with your homeschooling lessons. The Homeschooling-Ideas website has plenty of suggestions for easy science experiments that can help kids understand the chemical reactions between different household items, basic physics rules and more.
7: Creative Activities to Teach Geography – Homeschooling-Ideas
Enable your kids to focus on their geography lessons by getting them involved in practical activities. Rather than making them memorize something from their textbook, engage them in map-making, card games and other fun activities to instill that knowledge. Check out the Homeschooling-Ideas website to discover ideas such as cooking your way around the world or making a lapbook about a region that your child likes.
8: Fun Arts and Crafts Projects – The Crafty Classroom
Nurture young creative souls with fun arts and crafts projects. This could bring a much needed break from regular lessons, which then helps to keep their minds active and focused on other upcoming classes. Plus, these projects can always be educational too. You could have art projects focused on the human anatomy or on geology, for instance.
9: Living Math Activities – Our Journey Westward
Teaching math can be one of the biggest challenges about homeschooling. It can be extremely challenging to make the subject engaging, especially for young learners. A good solution is by encouraging them to learn math through real life. In other words, you engage them in activities that show them how to use math to play games or solve real-life problems. For instance, you could teach fractions using play dough or multiplication with Lego bricks.
10: Using Manipulatives to Teach Math – Wyzant
Manipulatives also make a great addition to your homeschooling curriculum, as they help kids learn about core math concepts using maneuverable objects.
These objects convert abstract ideas into concrete examples, making it easier for learners to understand them. Manipulatives are used in nearly every classroom, and are an important tool for homeschooling parents to learn.
Additional Homeschooling Resources
Here are some incredibly useful ways to incorporate things like movies, music, and games (things kids LOVE) into a homeschooling schedule.
11: Teaching with Movies and Documentaries – CuriosityStream
Some kids are visual learners and teaching them through textbooks alone will not engage them for long enough. So try incorporating “movie time” into your homeschool schedule and help your kids learn through educational movies and documentaries. CuriosityStream is a streaming service that focuses specifically on documentaries and educational films in categories ranging from science and history to technology and society.
12: Incorporating Music – At Home with Holly
Music can be another great way to stimulate young brains and refresh them to focus on other lessons. So you should considering incorporating music into your homeschool curriculum. There are plenty of free homeschool resources to teach music to children, so this shouldn’t be too much of a challenge. The homeschooling mom blog, At Home with Holly has put together several free music lesson resources spanning across various instruments.
13: Boredom Buster Kits – Homeschooling-Ideas
A day in the life of a homeschooled kid can’t be all fun and games, no matter how much you try to make homeschooling fun. There may still be days that are stressful or just plain boring. For a quick fix to those periods of boredom, be prepared with boredom buster kits. These can contain simple and quick activities to re-energize their brain and help them regain their focus.
Resources for When Homeschooling Isn’t Working
Let’s face it: homeschooling isn’t easy. When you need help, know where to find it, and how to ask.
14: Back to School Preparation
When homeschool isn’t working, you might gear up to help your kid get reacquainted with traditional school through online classes. Instead of suddenly transitioning them back to an online learning environment, help them prepare for it through online back to school resources.
15: Getting Help with Homeschooling
Sometimes, homeschooling may not work mainly because you need some help from expert homeschool tutors. This is completely natural if you’re new to the homeschooling landscape. Use the resources on Wyzant to discover how you can get help with homeschooling and find a homeschool tutor.
16: Finding Tutors for Elementary Education
Wyzant has an excellent resource to help you find online homeschool tutors who specialize in elementary education.
Tutors have all the skills and expertise needed to create a nurturing and engaging homeschool learning environment for your kids.
You can even find tutors who can help with specific challenges, such as language tutors or reading tutors. So consider browsing profiles in all your kids’ subjects to see if you can find an educator that suits your needs.
These tutors have all the skills and expertise needed to create a nurturing and engaging homeschool learning environment for your kids. You can even find tutors who can help with specific challenges such as language tutors or reading tutors, for instance. So consider going through the listings to see if you can find one that suits your needs.
17: Finding Tutors for Elementary Math
If your kid struggles with math, Wyzant has a great resource of online homeschool tutors who specialize in teaching elementary math. Many of these tutors know when and how to apply manipulatives and living math activities to create a fun learning experience for your kids. Most importantly, your kids will be able to understand abstract math concepts in a more concrete way.
18: Wyzant Homeschooling Tutor Concierge
If you have a hard time finding a homeschool tutor, use the Wyzant Homeschool Tutor Concierge to find the perfect educator for your needs. Whether you need a tutor for your online homeschool pod or you need private lessons, this concierge will connect you to an educator who can meet those specific requirements.
The Bottom Line
Once you’ve moved past the basics of what is homeschooling and how does it work, the above tips and resources are crucial to make homeschooling fun and engaging for your kids. The idea is to implement a lot of games and activities into your lessons, rather than depending too much on text books. This will be much more effective in instilling the lesson into young minds as it’s more interactive.
Don’t forget to create boredom busters to take quick breaks in between lessons and re-energize bored minds. Check out the Wyzant Blog Homeschooling Resource Hub for more homeschooling resources.