Summer Schooling in our Homeschool

Ah, Summer! Time for lazy mornings and even lazier evenings. Swimming under the sun and catching fireflies under the stars. Running through the sprinkler and playing flashlight tag. Hiking, biking, fishing, bonfires and s’mores.

And after three days of that, the kids start to sing their favorite summer song. Perhaps you’ve heard it, the lyrics go something like this:

We’re sooooo bored, there’s nothing to do

No, I don’t want to go clean my room

Go out and play? But I can’t find my shoe!!

We’re soooo bored, boo-hoo-hoo-hoo…

Homeschooled or not, I do believe this to be the official summer anthem of kids everywhere.  The lyrics may differ from home to home, but the song theme remains the same.

And this is why we homeschool year round. Yes, there are other reasons, like the fact that come September, they’ve not only forgotten how to multiply, but also how to get out of bed and get into anything that slightly resembles a routine. And there’s also the whole teaching them that every day is made for learning thing.

Yeah, but mostly it’s because I can’t stand the whining.

I’m not saying we do a full schedule over the summer, but we do try to keep up on math, reading and writing. Reading, however, has no assigned questions, essays or book reports attached to it. It is simply reading for pleasure. Writing is only of the creative kind over the summer. Journaling, poetry, writing short stories in notebooks….some of their best works come from this freewriting time.

We also get a lot of art and music in over the summer. No, I don’t count singing the I am Bored song as a music credit (though they certainly log enough hours on it). Art and music just happen as they happen. Perhaps it’s someone teaching herself how to play a particular song on the keyboard or doing splash painting, blow painting, spin painting – anything that combines the word “painting” with another word that translates to “this sounds messy” and can be done outdoors. There’s also plenty of outdoor learning experiences like nature walks, constellation identification and “field trips” to the beach.

By no means am I saying all kids everywhere should school year round. As a matter of fact, I shed a tear every time I read an article about some school district or ill-informed educrat proposing an extended calendar because there just doesn’t seem to enough time in the current school year to teach to the test.  I still wholeheartedly believe in the sanctity of summer break. But I also believe in the sanity of giving mom a break from her job as activities director.

And that’s what my summer schooling is about.  It’s about sprinkling just a little bit of leisurely learning into this season of downtime. It’s about filling their nothing to do time with something to do that’s a tad more substantial than youtube or xbox. And it’s about giving them a reason to appreciate those hours of digging in the sand and watching the sunset over the lake.

And maybe it’s just a little bit about hoping to never have to hear that whining song again.

 

Text and image © Ruby Tree Academy

One thought on “Summer Schooling in our Homeschool

  • June 10, 2018 at 8:08 pm
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    Same! Im with you on this Chris. Pepper in learning everyday. We school year round too since our school year isnt typical and filled with outsourcing and trips. Breaks up monotony.

    Reply

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