Written by contributor Jena of Yarns of the Heart
May is a time of endings and beginnings. Graduation, summer vacation…the world tends to follow a public school clock, and even though we homeschoolers aren’t confined by these boundaries, we still find ourselves relaxing more as May comes around.
While you’re spending more time outside and letting go of some routines, I say, “Embrace the summer attitude!” Let a summer mindset be the climate of your schooling.
Look for ways to let summer last all year long.
Here’s what I mean:
- This summer, notice how your kids are learning on their own. What do they choose to do? Are they learning anything while they do it? Maybe their natural drive could be the foundation of your schooling in the fall.
- Ask your kids what they would like to do this summer. Ask why, and the answer will give you a lot of insight into what motivates them. Could these sports, activities or travel opportunities open up unit studies and research projects?
- Do you keep a strict schedule in the summer? Probably not as strict as the school year, so pay attention to the difference. Do you all get along better? Are you more creative? Are you still learning? Maybe you’ll want to incorporate a less scheduled lifestyle into your schooling.
- Keep a journal or take pictures of what you do this summer, then reflect in August. What elements of your summer could keep going all year long?
As I write this, I am reminded of the first post I wrote for my blog in 2008. I called it School, an Endless Summer. It’s a wistful look back as my oldest was about to graduate high school.
When we started this journey, I viewed homeschooling as a continuation of the preschool years, as a life seamlessly flowing from one season into the next without the abrupt stops and starts that traditional schooling imposes. It really was a life of endless summers.
I guess it’s deep in my bones to keep learning natural and fun, like exploring the beach on a summer evening.
How would you describe the climate of your homeschool?