12 Activities for Your Homeschool Summer

Some homeschool year round, others take the summer off. However you schedule the season, these activities can be a fun way to sneak some enrichment learning into your homeschool summer.

Volunteer

Foster a dog, organize a food drive or host a bake sale and donate your profits to charity. Summer is an excellent time for kids to learn about the value of serving their communities.

Garden

Even if all you produce is a single tomato, planting and tending to a garden is an experience the whole family can enjoy. If this is your first summer garden, chances are you will learn an awful lot about what not to do, but it is still hands-on learning at its best – and a lesson that won’t be wasted as you’ll be so much better prepared for next year’s garden.

Read

Summer is the perfect time to read all of the fun, non-academic works they may not have enough time to read during the homeschool year. Let them pick the materials they would like to read over the summer and then institute a daily reading hour.  No vocabulary words, no book reports, no pressure — just laid back, summertime, easy reading.

Make a Mess

One thing I love most about summer is the chance to take the messy projects outside. Paint with colored shaving cream, craft a paper mache rocket, tie-dye some fabrics or build a backyard waterpark. Whatever mess you’ve had in mind for a while, take it outside and go for it!

Start a Club or Business

If your kids are reading every day anyhow, why not invite the neighborhood to join a book club? How about a child-led pet-sitting business (with adult supervision) or an old-fashioned lemonade stand?  Clubs and businesses are a fun way for kids to get together and hone their organizational skills while enjoying the time they spend together.

Cook Outdoors

Cooking is a big part of our homeschool, but most of that happens in our kitchen’s oven. Summer offers a chance to bring the utensils outside to try new recipes and grilling methods – and even campfire cooking!

Put on a Show

Summer stock is calling – or at least inspiring a backyard version for your homeschool group.  Help them turn the yard into an outdoor theater, and then find a play they would like to perform (or even write their own).  You’d be surprised how much of the summer can be spent rehearsing, creating costumes, printing playbills and invitations for their backyard performance.

Play Life-Sized Board Games

From creating a  life sized tic-tac-toe board with human X’s and O’s to building a giant Jenga board, the choices for bringing favorite indoor table games to life on your lawn are many.

Star Gazing

Lay some blankets on the lawn and head out after dark to lie under the night sky. Sky gazing can become an impromptu astronomy lesson – or plan out a few lessons in advance and take advantage of the summer sky on evenings when those celestial beings have something special to show you.

Travel

If you already have a summer trip planned, you can easily find learning opportunities within your vacation. Travel may include use of maps or pointing out specific geographic elements. Also consider how that geography affects the climate of your destination. Every place has a history, consider places of interest to visit on your trip. Not every vacation has to include a museum trip either, you could opt to stay in a hotel with a rich history or dine in a restaurant known for certain folklore.

Keep a Journal

If your kids do nothing else this summer, have them keep a journal. Whether they decide to describe in exquisite detail the every moment of their days or simply list the date and one thing they did that day, these journals will one day be the fondest of keepsakes with which they can recall their childhood summers.

Relax

This one is for you, homeschooling mama. And likely, for your kids, too, as the homeschooling lifestyle is so often fueled by the “everything is a learning experience” mantra, we sometimes forget how to stop looking for a lesson in absolutely every moment. But just as it’s important to see a lesson in every task, it’s equally prudent to let some of those lessons pass; to just sit and unwind, clear your schedule and clear your mind. Even if you homeschool year round, find some time to take a few days, get out into the warm summer air and learn how to just be.

 

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