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June 2019

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How Unit Studies Can Enhance Your Homeschool

By | Homeschool Planning | No Comments

The core subjects in homeschooling are a given. Math. Science. Reading. History. We know we have to teach them. Unit studies can definitely break up the monotony in your homeschool. Aside from changing up the normality of your instruction, unit studies can also enrich your child’s education. Learn how unit studies can enhance your homeschool and make things a little more interesting for the kids.

A unit study is also called a thematic study. This type of instruction derives from choosing a topic or a theme, then designing a learning experience around that topic or theme.

Unit studies allow you and your students to think outside the box to find ways to tie different subjects together. What is interesting about unit studies is that they are built in the same manner that our brains are built to work. Like unit studies make connections with other subjects to build on a child’s knowledge base like a web., so our brains work to build connections between the information that we learn also like a web.

Much of how students learn is by way of building links between something they already know, to something new. We often don’t even realize how the brain is making the connections, but it is. When a child first learns how to write letters, it is because they first knew how to build a line, how to hold a pencil in their hand, and have seen it done before.

In using unit studies, many subjects are pulled together to create connections that make it easier for children to internalize and remember. Unit studies help students learn in a way that can help them in real life situations and problem-solving skills.

Research has shown that unit studies allow students to retain 45% more information than by using a traditional learning approach alone. A conventional approach to teaching is definitely necessary. Core subjects are needed, but a unit study weaved into your homeschool can truly bring many benefits.

Unit studies can enhance your homeschool by teaching your children how to work together.

Whether you have two kids or many, unit studies, allow for them to work together effectively. Unit studies work well for multiple-child, multiple-age learning in the homeschool setting. A unit study can get your older kids working with the younger kids, and younger kids will learn from what the older ones are sharing.

Young children can draw pictures, while older kids can write a story. There are many films that families can watch together to build a unit study around. Kids will practice taking turns, listening to each other, and even work projects together and present them to you together.

Unit studies can enhance your homeschool by teaching for more in-depth knowledge.

Although you may use textbooks and workbooks now and again, they tend to focus on specified information. I use them for some subjects myself throughout the year. Learning facts about a subject on the surface is way different than learning them deep enough to bring about knowledge that lasts. Learning Algebraic Equations can get pretty dry and challenging. Learning about where it came from, why we learn it, and child geniuses who “get” it, can build a connection to motivate a student to learn the subject more freely.

Unit studies can enhance your homeschool by teaching what your child is interested in.

When a child shows interest in a topic, and you can build on that topic through all types of subjects, your child is more likely to be intrigued by the lessons. If your children are taking music lessons and love it, then that is a sure fire way to utilize a unit study.

Your child can write an essay about the history of the instrument. They can explore the areas in the globe that is known for that instrument. You can study the music, search for math problems that use instruments as an example, read and do book reports of a famous artist who use the instrument, and explore how they are made for a science project.

Learning through unit studies can transition our kids to a mindset that thinks broadly about a subject instead of narrowly. Seeking connections to find solutions is a skill that many young students aren’t being challenged to explore.

Homeschool Planet has well over 100 lesson plans for all types of curriculum. They also now are carrying more and more types of exciting curriculum for home education along with the customized lesson plans.

Homeschool Planet holds unit studies with customized Lesson Plans for you to use in your homeschool. Here are a few you will love:

Clever Dragons

Clever Dragons is a learn-and-play platform for young boys. A team of educational experts, including teachers, academics, and homeschooling parents, developed the “learn with fun” concept of Clever Dragons.

Kids will learn with watching fun videos that teach everything from Math to Science to Spanish!

Homeschool Planet online lesson plans are customized for the following:

Clever Dragons Grades K-1  For Grades K – 1

Clever Dragons Grades 2-3  For Grades 2 – 3

Clever Dragons Grades 4-5  For Grades 4 – 5

Always Ice Cream

Learning can be super fun with Always Ice Cream. Always Ice Cream is a learn-and-play platform for young girls. A team of educational experts, including teachers, academics, and homeschooling parents, developed the “learn with fun” concept of Always Ice Cream.

Kids will learn with watching fun videos that teach everything from Math to Science to Spanish! Watch fun videos that teach everything from Math to Science to Spanish!

Your student can do fun things like running their own shop, design clothes, furniture, and artwork.

Homeschool Planet online lesson plans are customized for the following:

Always Ice Cream Grades K-1  For Grades K – 1

Always Ice Cream Grades 2-3  For Grades 2 – 3

Always Ice Cream Grades 4-5  For Grades 4 – 5

Homeschool Adventure- Bible Unit Study, Walking with the Waodani Lesson Plans AND Curriculum!

Walking with the Waodani is a Homeschool Adventure Bible unit study that will introduce your family to some of the most amazing people and places, meals and markets, animals and agriculture, and worlds and worldviews of the country of Ecuador — as experienced through the eyes of a homeschool graduate.

Homeschool Planet online lesson plans are customized for the Walking with the Waodani – Adventures in Ecuador  For Grades 6 – 12.

When kids take interest in something and you build lessons around that interest, their motivation will skyrocket. Knowing the ins and outs of a topic can broaden a child’s knowledge base for deep and lasting understanding. Getting your children to work together in learning builds strong relationships and also broadens the knowledge base through information sharing. Each of these can enhance any homeschool exponentially.

Will you be using unit studies this year in your homeschool? Are there any unit study topics you want to share or have questions about?

Homeschool Planet Charlotte Mason Methods Blogspot button

4 Components of the Charlotte Mason Method

By | Homeschool Planning | No Comments

Charlotte Mason described her approach to education as, “… an Atmosphere, a Discipline, and a Life.”  This quote, in and of itself, is the basis by which all Charlotte Mason stylistic teaching has derived. Whether you are a new homeschooling family or you are looking for new approaches to homeschooling, it is worth exploring these 4 components of the Charlotte Mason method.

Charlotte Mason’s style of education promotes a focus on the training of attention and habits. This typically included letting children read loads of great literature, being in the natural world, and encouraging critical thinking in students.

This method of educating children is rich in the natural course of learning and thinking. It is intriguing in so many ways, some of which include short lessons to keep a child’s attention on the topic, and nature studies as to spend much time outdoors discovering the world around them.

Children who learn the Charlotte Mason way holistically absorb information, making a well-rounded student. There are many aspects to this approach which help the whole child in becoming an independent thinker and productive adult. These are just a few components that help make this method effective.

4 Components of the Charlotte Mason Method

Living Books

Charlotte’s method incorporates living books into your child’s education by an author who has a passion for his topic, making the story “come alive.” No textbooks are allowed in the Charlotte Mason approach but instead, the style focuses on first-hand experience, autobiographies, biographies, classical writings, scriptures, and poetry for children to glean from.

Copywork

Charlotte Mason carefully selected copywork that created good thoughts to meditate on and fostering ideas. Most sources of copywork should be found in the living books that the child was currently reading, scripture, poetry, and quotes.

Narration

In this sense, narration includes the way by which you realize a child has learned. When a child can retell what they heard or read, the information has successfully been stored in their memory and becomes their own. Narrating what they have learned from each subject is found to be telling of comprehension and knowledge acquired.

Art and Music Appreciation

Charlotte Mason encouraged students to study one composer per term to learn about their history, life, and artwork. She believed that studying art, music, and the ones who created them, would foster a balanced education and a well-rounded child.

A Charlotte Mason style of homeschooling lends itself well to use Homeschool Planet’s homeschool planner as a homeschool organizer and homeschool record keeping tool. For instance, using living books as the primary source of text in reading can get challenging. Keeping records on this volume of text can be taxing for busy families.

With a reading list and scheduling widget, Homeschool Planet easily organizes your child’s reading schedule. It can capture how many pages each child needs to read a day to be done by a specific date. Instead of you having to track every book, every page, and chapter, Homeschool Planet can be customized so that your child knows exactly where they need to be and when.

All you have to do is plug in the number of pages on the reading log, and by what date your child needs to complete the book and… Viola!

To ensure short lessons, as recommended by Charlotte Mason, you can set timed lessons on the Homeschool Planet homeschool planner online to ensure kids never go too long or get distracted.

Homeschool Planet’s homeschool planner online keeps some organization to your child’s education while allowing the freedom for you to choose precisely what your child needs to learn and activities for them to do.

The homeschool organizer is perfect for busy families and encourages your child in accountability, time management, and independent learning – perfect for a Charlotte Mason style homeschool education.

If you are a Charlotte Mason homeschool family, then check out the Homeschool Planet lesson plans for The Good and The Beautiful curriculum.

The creators of the curriculum intensely studied many different philosophies for years and compiled what they felt were the best elements from several different theories, pulling mainly from Charlotte Mason.

The Good and The Beautiful resource aims to teach advanced academics while kids learn wholesome, robust literature with easy to follow, low prep, and offers crazy low prices for the highest quality curriculum.

You can explore the Homeschool Planet customized lesson plans for The Good and the Beautiful curriculum here:

The Good and The Beautiful History

The Good and The Beautiful Science

The Good and The Beautiful Penmanship

The Good and The Beautiful Language Arts

Check out Homeschool Planet for yourself with a 30-day FREE trial. No credit card information is necessary to give it a try!

At last — an easy, flexible, full-featured online planner that doesn’t require hours to learn. Just launch, click on the calendar, and start adding classes, assignments, and appointments!

With Homeschool Planet lesson plans, homeschooling has never been easier!

High School Electives Your Kids Will Love

By | Organizing Your Homeschool | No Comments

It is beneficial to understand why high school electives are essential before exploring them for your homeschool students. We spend so much discerning how to teach and what to teach for core subjects like math, science, reading, etc. Then the secondary years come along; you and your student explore what electives they might like to take. Homeschool Planet has some suggestions for high school electives your kids will love, and we have online homeschool lesson plans to go along with each one.

For all of their primary years, children have had their homeschool lessons planned out for them. They were given what subjects to take or learn. Some parents gear the lessons towards a child’s likes and interest, which increases learning and is motivating.

However, there is a unique embrace to high school electives that make learning particularly appealing to teenagers. Having a stake in the learning that occurs for them in this time encourages independent learning, develops their decision-making skills, and produces accountability.

When high school is fast approaching, and you have investigated the college requirements to plan out high school goals, then high school electives help to round out your student’s schedule.

High school electives serve various purposes, some of which are listed below:

High school electives help students work towards their college goals.

High school electives help students work towards their desired career path.

High school electives help students bring color to college applications.

High school electives allow students to take classes they are intrigued by or for skills they are interested in.

It can be challenging when you realize your student will need to select electives soon. Choosing high school electives mean your child has reached a milestone. It means your child is growing up to be an adult. It means your child is coming to their own. It means that parents have done a fantastic job and educating their child to this point and beyond. Embrace it and enjoy the journey right alongside your high school student.

Sometimes it may be hard to narrow down and select electives if they aren’t necessarily a requirement or a part of a student’s natural course of study. Should you need some suggestions, Homeschool Planet has developed customized lesson plans for some of the best high school electives available.

Explore these high school electives with customized online lesson plans from Homeschool Planet:

Classical Academic Press Logic Series – With a classical education approach, Classical Academic Press has created curricula, media, and training with systematic instruction that encompasses delight, creativity, and flair.

Homeschool Planet’s customized lesson plans for The Art of Argument (Grades 7 – 12) take you through the course as it teaches students how to reason with clarity, relevance, and purpose. The lesson plans for its follow-up companion The Argument Builder (Grades 8 – 12) guides students along the course while they build compelling and persuasive arguments of their own.

You won’t want to miss the lesson plans for The Discovery of Deduction  (Grades 8 – 12) which teaches practical and real-world application of soundly structured deductive logic.

Fallacy Detectives Logic Series – This series of thirty-eight books shows your students how to learn to spot common errors in reasoning. It truly gets children thinking of how conclusions should be made.

The Fallacy Detective (Grades 7 – 12) and The Thinking Toolbox  (Grades 7 – 12) are fun to use and help develop a skill they can use right away. Homeschool Planet lesson plans for each of these texts will keep students on track and growing in logical knowledge.

LIFEPAC Electives – LIFEPAC helps to broaden your child’s knowledge base and boost your child’s confidence. This is a time for your students to explore courses they are intrigued by, fulfill general education requirements, improve GPA, or ones that will develop their desired career skills and abilities.

Homeschool Planet has developed online lesson plans for LIFEPAC Family and Consumer Science (Grades 7 – 12) and LIFEPAC Business Computer Information Systems (Grades 9 – 12).

PLATO: Career Technical Electives  — PLATO offers various ways to differentiate learning, interact with the content, and increase achievement. The courses are full of review games, historical timelines, interactive periodic tables, simulations, and virtual labs.

Homeschool Planet has developed customized lesson plans for the following Plato courses:

Applied Medical Terminology (Grades 9 – 12)

Art History & Appreciation (Grades 9 – 12)

Child Development and Parenting A & B Bundle (Grades 9 – 12)

Computer Programming A & B Bundle  ( Grades 9 – 12)

Drafting and Design (Grades 9 – 12)

Game Development (Grades 9 – 12)

Graphic Design and Illustration (Grades 9 – 12)

Health (Grades 9 – 12)

Intro to Fashion Design (Grades 9 – 12)

Intro to Finance (Grades 9 – 12)

Intro to Social Media (Grades 9 – 12)

Marketing, Advertising, and Sales (Grades 9 – 12)

Music Appreciation (Grades 9 – 12)

Personal Finance (Grades 9 – 12)

Physical Education (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Architecture and Construction (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Arts, A/V Technology, and Communications (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Business, Marketing and Finance (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Engineering and Technology (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Hospitality and Tourism (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Health Science (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Information Technology (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Law, Public Safety, Corrections, and Security (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Manufacturing (Grades 9 – 12)

Professional Photography (Grades 9 – 12)

Principles of Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (Grades 9 – 12)

Psychology (Grades 9 – 12)

Sociology (Grades 9 – 12)

Structure of Writing (Grades 9 – 12)

Web Technologies (Grades 9 – 12)

Study.com Electives   — Study.com has over 200 courses that either satisfy requirements or take classes for college. Homeschool Planet has developed a customized lesson plan for Psychology 101. This is an Intro to Psychology (for 12th Grade).

Thinkwell Electives  — Thinkwell Electives are video-based learning materials for electives that enhance the spirit of learning by helping students with thinking well. Homeschool Planet has lesson plans for the following Thinkwell electives:

Public Speaking (Grades 9 – 12)

Thinkwell Economics (Grades 9 – 12)

Thinkwell Microeconomics (Grades 11 – 12)

Thinkwell Macroeconomics (Grades 11 – 12)

Thinkwell American Government (Grades 9 – 12)

Thinkwell AP American Government (Grades 9 – 12)

Check out Homeschool Planet for yourself with a 30-day FREE trial. No credit card information is necessary to give it a try!

At last — an easy, flexible, full-featured online planner that doesn’t require hours to learn. Just launch, click on the calendar, and start adding classes, assignments, and appointments!

With Homeschool Planet lesson plans, homeschooling has never been easier!

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