How to make your homeschool an endless summer

how to make your homeschool an endless summer
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?

child with shell on beachAs 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?

About Jena Borah

Jena Borah homeschooled her three children all the way to college. She blogs about her homeschooling years and her interest-led philosophy at Yarns of the Heart.

Comments

  1. Jena, you are one of my favorite home school moms. Because of some of your thoughts and ideas on homeschooling this is how we “do school”, by the seasons. It’s more relaxed, less hectic and I think as a family we get along better and do more together.

    • Hey Rana,
      So fun to see you still read me and are the first to comment! I’m glad you are enjoying your family. The time goes by so quickly!

  2. I love this! I want our homeschool to flow as just a part of life. I hate the idea of hard stops and starts which is why I’m considering year round homeschooling. Great post!

  3. “…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.”
    I absolutely LOVE this concept! It’s so hard to describe the ideal vision I have for our homeschooling schedule year-round, but comparing it to the sweet days of preschool (which we’re still in right now) where you read, play, learn, have fun, keep things flowing and relaxed and natural- THAT is what I want. Thanks for putting it that way, because that is exactly what I’ve envisioned for our future. I’m enjoying how we learn right now way too much, and the idea of changing the flow just doesn’t feel right.
    Kat’s latest post: Friday Freebie: Philippians 4:13 Memory Verse Printable

  4. I was raised by a wise mother who embraces child-led education. After our morning Bible and Math lessons (the only mandatory book work in our home), we were free to read, explore, experiment, and discover on our own with minimal direction from mom. By the end of the week, we had to write, type, draw, or color (depending on our ages) what we had learned that week. I love carrying this tradition on with my four kids. We have more formal books, but I only have the kids sitting for a short time doing workbooks. As soon as they get antsy, we close the books and get outside. I love your endless summer philosophy!

  5. Angie Milligan says:

    I love reading SH and Yarns of the Heart! Both offer such a wonderful view of homeschooling…one that I try to implement and sometimes find myself doubting. I love reading both of your encouraging words. Thank you!

    • I’ve been thinking about writing a post about self doubt. I’ve had a lot of it over the years. We homeschooling moms are pretty hard on ourselves, and I guess that’s understandable. We have chosen to take on a lot of responsibility. I’m glad you are finding encouragement for the journey!
      Jena’s latest post: What Really Matters in Homeschooling

  6. What a beautiful sentiment. I love the photo, and your original endless summer post.
    Lucinda

Share Your Thoughts

*

CommentLuv badge