We’ve made it! Well, at least most of you all have made it, to the end of the homeschool year! We are year round schooling this year, so our official last day is the end of June. We are psyched and ready to begin our summer vacation!
One thing I try to do each year with my kids is celebrating the end of the homeschool year. How we do this has varied through the years, but the key is to do SOMETHING we don’t do every day and SOMETHING that the kids have been really wanting to do.
Here are 5 ways to celebrate the end of the homeschool year!
Picnic with Friends
We have an end of the year celebration with our homeschool group each year. Normally this is our official last day of school. We have had a water day, we have had track and field days, we have had just a picnic and free play. The kids love it because regardless of whether or not there are activities planned they get to spend the whole day playing with their friends.
If your homeschool group doesn’t offer something like this, consider planning one yourself. It takes little to no money, you just need a location and a few friends. Everyone can pack a lunch, bring balls, jump ropes, bubbles, whatever they want and show up! Voila! You’re celebrating the end of the homeschool year.
A Large Homeschool/Educational Purchase
Has there been an item you have wanted for your homeschool or that maybe your kids have been dying to have? Celebrate the end of the year by purchasing it! One year I bought my daughter the whole Magic Tree House series. It was her first year into chapter books and she had been so sick of waiting for the library to get them. Another year we purchased a new book shelf. Maybe you have been wanting a microscope or a computer program. Whatever it may be, consider grabbing it to celebrate the end of the homeschool year!
Go on a Trip
Have the kids been wanting to hit that local zoo, aquarium, water park, or children’s museum? Do it to celebrate the end of the homeschool year! Most of these places offer great homeschool discounts and you can still count it at as a school day! If you’re not sure what discounts are available for homeschoolers, look on the website of the attraction you want to visit. Find the education section. If nothing is mentioned there, email or call the facility and ask to speak with the education coordinator. They should be able to let you know whether or not there are homeschool discounts available. Most places will let you use the same discounts that public schools receive.
Head out for a Treat!
What kid doesn’t like ice cream, cake, or another sweet treat? When the books are closed head out for a treat with the kids. My kiddos personal favorite is frozen yogurt. The price keeps us from going there often so they are all three tickled when we actually get to go!
Enjoy the Great Outdoors
Nature hikes, fishing, geocaching, are all great fun and can be done for FREE (in most states kids fish free, check your state guidelines to see if you need a license to fish)! Head out to the great outdoors and celebrate the end of the homeschool year together enjoying the beauty around you.
As we wrap up our school year, let’s celebrate our accomplishments by spending time together as a family. Do something fun, out of the ordinary, and let your kids know how proud you are of them for finishing up another homeschool year! PS: You did a great job this year too!
Misty Bailey is a Christian wife and work at home homeschool mom. She resides with her family in Southern Ohio. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued, homeschooling and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey. You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.
When I first began homeschooling I never really considered Geography a subject. I mean, that is part of History right? Oh, I was so wrong! You see, I could barely follow a map. I knew little to nothing about our world, the state capitols of the United States or the different countries located within the seven continents. Why? Because I was never taught Geography.
Why would I do the same disservice to my children?
Instead, I decided to learn along with my kids. It ended up being much more fun than I thought, and there were a few must have geography resources that made it all possible!
Dry Erase Map
We have a huge dry erase map in our school room. With it, we find every country we discuss in History. Sometimes it’s a little difficult but our goal is to SEE the places we are learning about. This year my middle daughter has been learning about land animals and she has been mapping where the animals live as well. It’s been a fun way to add geography to our science lessons.
One thing that made my kids cringe was learning the states and capitals. I mean who needs to know that right? We found a fun app a few years ago that taught the states, but the capital version wasn’t getting them anywhere. Then, someone told me about stack the states. This app has been a game changer! The girls LOVE it and actually play it outside of school time on a regular basis.
While I have used some of their lapbooks, I’ve not used their geography program. , but I have heard the are wonderful! There are two discs that can be purchased separately or together. There are Olde World maps, with political borders, ancient maps, and modern maps. There is a World Map disc and a United States maps and each of them has note booking pages or fact sheets that can be used to supplement your homeschool geography lessons. There are also bonus full-color flags for the countries and/or States that you can print off and use for your notebook pages.
If you are looking for free geography printables to go along with your homeschool studies, look no further than Homeschool Creations! They offer several note booking pages you can use in your home.
This has been a fun way to explore the area around us. We even use it when we go on vacation. Geocaching is like a modern day treasure hunt. You and your family pick a location and you explore it looking for a “treasure”. By geocaching, my kids have learned how to use a compass, how to measure the distance between them and the object they are looking for, and about the landscape of the areas we are exploring. It’s a fun way for the family to do something together AND they are learning in the process.
We have used this site as an add on for a variety of subjects. The geography section does not disappoint. Through their geography games, your child will gain a mental map of the world’s continents, countries, capitals, & landscapes!
These games look like so much fun! I just ordered the United States one after happening across it while writing this post. Explore the country as a family in this fun board game.
This book has been one of my most used purchases. It is full of facts about different countries and their cultures. My kids loved looking at the bright and vivid pictures when they were younger and now enjoy diving in and learning more about the country they are studying in History.
Other fun resources we have enjoyed through the years are
- Paper Dolls-You can find these on the web or purchase them. The girls loved playing with dolls from a variety of different countries and cultures through the years.
- Coloring Books- We found these on topics like flags from around the world, countries from around the world, and the United States of America. These are a great add-on for younger children who want to join in on their older siblings studies.
The key to teaching geography to kids is finding something that interests them and running with it. If they are interested in Kangaroos, study Australia, map Australia, learn about the countries in Australia. The same can be done with any topic.
These are just a few of some of our favorite geography resources through the years. These resources can enhance your child’s learning and engage them in a fun way that will get them excited about learning.
Misty Bailey is a work at home homeschool mom. She loves helping new homeschoolers and has a Homeschool 101 eBook for those getting started. She shares everyday tips and encouragement for the homeschool mom on her blog Joy in the Journey.
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