Take advantage of the flexibility that comes with teaching your children at home. Use your imagination!
Step 1: Take field trips Make the world your classroom by taking the children on lots of field trips – to museums, zoos, the aquarium, parks, botanical gardens, and so on. Check with your local chamber of commerce and tourism office for ideas.
Step 2: Make lessons out of the everyday Make lessons out of everyday life. Grocery shopping, cooking, and pet care can all be turned into tutorials on math, nutrition, spelling, and more.
TIP: If your child is engaged in a subject, don't cut the lesson short – with homeschooling, you're not confined to teaching in 45-minute increments.
Step 3: Make it fun Make learning fun. If you can find a gripping historical novel that will do just as good a job of teaching European history as a traditional textbook, use it.
Step 4: Exploit your child's interests Take advantage of your child's interests by building lessons in several subjects – like math, geography, history, art, and reading – around one of their passions, like cars.
TIP: If you have more than one child, teach your children together in as many subjects as you can – your bright seven year old might learn ninth-grade math with their older sibling.
Step 5: Grow a garden Grow a vegetable garden. If you don't have the room, plant an herb garden. Growing vegetables and herbs will provide ample opportunities to teach science and home economics.
Step 6: Read the newspaper Read a daily newspaper together. Use it not only to keep your children abreast of current events, but to practice reading and teach finance, history, and vocabulary.
Step 7: Join forces Join forces with other parents in your area who homeschool, so your children will have other kids to socialize with on group outings. See what teaching materials you can swap and share.
Step 8: Find pen pals Find pen pals for your children; correspondence is a great way to sharpen basic skills like writing and spelling. Or have them write to someone in another country as a way to help them learn a foreign language.
FACT: Did you know? Nearly one-quarter of homeschooled students are at least one grade ahead of their public and private school peers.