God bestowed a marvelous gift on His children — an innate curiosity of the world He created. As you consider the questions that young children pose this fact becomes blindingly clear.
Do you find yourself spending countless hours scouring the internet in search of ways to pique your child’s interest in his/her lessons?
In a virtual homeschooling world, the public school curriculum doesn’t always hold the attention of a young mind. Children learn more and are better able to retain information if they can relate to the subject at hand.
Just as a teacher must be creative in the classroom, so must the learning coach be creative in the home.
Listed below are a few ways to spice up your child’s lessons.
Grocery shopping is a fun way to teach children that math is a real-world skill. Have your elementary student weigh apples or estimate cost based on price per pound. Your older child would greatly benefit from being able to figure price per ounce and percent-off deals. Even the youngest child can practice counting, shapes, and colors.
Cooking is another fantastic way to engage your child in math. There are occasions to discuss ratios and proportions. Converting between metric and standard measurements may be required. You might even take the opportunity to sneak in a little pre-algebra. For example, you know that you need 3 eggs to make 2 dozen cookies, but you want to make 4 dozen cookies. You could set the problem up as a ratio first.
3 eggs = 2 dozen
X eggs 4 dozen
Cross multiply to create a simple algebraic equation: 2X = 12. Voila!
Science is all around us! To build a love of science, try some of the following ideas.
- Search YouTube for some fun and easy science experiments such as a rainbow density column, invisible ink, or a baking soda/vinegar volcano.
- Explore the wonders of nature by taking a hike or planting a garden.
- Lie on a blanket and look at the stars. It is better than any trip to the planetarium!
- Cook together and discuss such wonderings as how sugar becomes candy or where ice goes when it gets hot.
Historical fiction books can really help children relate to the past. One of the best series I have found is called Dear America. These books are written as diaries and are told from the perspective of young women living throughout different time periods. With 43 books covering many important events in American history, you are sure to find one that fits your needs. Amazon.com has an incredible list of all the books in the series along with reviews so that you are able to pick and choose what you are most interested in. Schoolhouse Rock videos are another favorite in our house. You just can’t beat “I’m Just a Bill” or “The Preamble” to learn about the American government.
Our love for Schoolhouse Rock overflows into language arts. Music and silly characters make it much easier to remember dry subjects, such as grammar. To see what I mean check out “Conjunction Junction”, “A Noun is a Person, Place, or Thing”, or “Unpack Your Adjectives”.
Journal writing is a fabulous way to get the creative juices flowing. Even the youngest child will benefit from writing practice. If you need ideas for a topic, here are two great pages I use:
Creativity is the key to being an effective learning coach, so get creative today! Show your children that math, science, social studies, and language arts are fun! You will be amazed by the love of learning it instills in your child.
God Bless 🙂