Learning through Doing

Fifth graders are usually awesome learners. They are still at an age where they are inquisitive, yet they are a bit older to where they can be trusted with more responsibility. This equals a lot of fun in learning. These young ones can have greater opportunities through doing most of what they are learning. From online math to history and science – take advantage of this great age and let them explore how they can apply what they learn into actual work.

Fifth graders really need this. They are questioning most of what they are learning as to how it applies to the real world. Make examples and then let them apply it. In science, build scale models = or even real models if space allows. In history, allow them to visit some of the historical sites your are studying or learn how to knit or weave when studying colonial times. Make it real… and they will learn through doing!

Accepting change…

School’s been going for a while now… how are you doing? Are you loving the homeschool curriculum that you chose to use for teaching your fifth graders this year? If not, and things aren’t going as planned… why not change? So many people are afraid of changing mid stream, when in reality it just may be the best thing that they could do.

Sit down and make a list of the things that you dislike about your current curriculum, make a list of how your children learn, and then use this list to find a curriculum that will meet you needs… and CHANGE. You’ll make the difference between existing all year and enjoying your homeschooling!

Learning with Strength

Every person, every individual has a specific strong point. They may have more than one, but each of us has something that we do well. Why is it when we educate we don’t maximize this potential? Instead we seek to make everyone conform to the same level by focusing on their weaknesses.

Wouldn’t it revolutionize education if we instead focused on each child’s strengths and allowed them to perfect these until they were masters at what they enjoyed doing? It sounds rather strange, but there are many people who educate their children in this method… and believe me it really works. No, they don’t allow them to skip their online math if they don’t do well at it. They just don’t make them go through all the advanced maths if that isn’t their forte. Educating a child’s strengths really could change their lives.

Independent children

Making your children independent can be frustrating but also liberating. If you invest the time to teach your children how to do something instead of just doing it for them, you will make a difference in their life. Too many parents make the mistake of doing everything for their children. This only brings about children that are dependent on you.

This same principle applies to education. During your the time that you are homeschooling, if you can make your child an independent learner, they will be a lifelong learner. Using an online homeschool curriculum is a great way to teach them to be more independent, as most online programs, do not require as much parental hovering.Teaching them how to find answers to their questions. How to look things up in books, find ways to get what they are looking for. All of this is what makes independent learners, and once you have one… they will keep on learning for a lifetime!

Start Up To Do List

Getting back to school? I love this time of year, the leaves are falling, the students are all back to school, it is just time to learn… like it’s in the air or something. There are a few things that I love to do as we are getting back to school. One of these is going through all of my old homeschooling stuff and tossing or selling what we don’t need. Another is reviewing what we did the year before. Did we like it, or was it a terrible year? One of the final things I do before we start schooling is to write a list of the goals and objectives that I would like to see us accomplish this year. If I keep this in mind each year, we will have something to aim for!

Qualified or not?

Do you ever worry about whether or not you are qualified to teach your children? To be honest, a lot of homeschool parents worry about this same thing. Though in reality if they are concerned, that shows that they really shouldn’t worry. You see if you really care about your child’s education, you will be trying to teach them to the best of your ability. Often this combined with one-on-one care and learning time, will give the child greater gains in achievement than having a teacher with a Ph.D. A concerned parent that knows their child is a better teacher than a stranger with many degrees. Plus, there are always great online programs and learning games out there they can help you, if you do need that extra help.

Be confident, that if you really care, you will find ways to make sure your child is receiving the best education that you can give them.

Making Learning Fun

Fifth graders are still young enough to want to play and have a great time while they are learning. You can make this possible in your own homeschool by incorporating educational games and exciting projects into your daily routine. Homeschooling is a great way to make learning fun, and using every teachable moment to do this can make for awesome learning experiences.

Your children are naturally learners. There is a natural inquisitiveness within each of them. So, it turns to us to bring this out in a constructive manner. What better way, than by using fun experiences to do it! From projects (science fair, gardening, etc) to field trip learning. Fifth graders are ready for fun!

Escaping burnout

Yes, homeschool parents suffer from burnout. We understand that yes, we did choose this of our own free will… yet, sometimes even in a good choice… the stress can get to be overwhelming. Here are a few ways to avoid getting burnout in your homeschool.

1) Find support – get connected with other homeschooling parents in your area and share your story. It will make you feel better to speak with someone who has probably felt the same way!

2) Make independent learners. This is a long term goal, but really pays off when you are having a bad day. If your kids are independent learners you should be able to let them get at it, and it should be done well.

3)Change your homeschool curriculum to an online program.

4)Delegate some of the responsibility to others within your home.

5) Take a break, or take a field trip – sometime a change of scenery is all you need!


Grammar Ghosts

My kids just love grammar so much… NOT! They really dislike the study of grammar because there really are so many grammar… ghosts. You know, all those “exceptions” or well that’s how we do it in this case, but then after this it’s done this other way… blah blah… Truthfully, it really can drive them crazy. There are so many exceptions to the rules in English grammar.

But, there is hope. If you can slow things down and get the kids to understand one principle at a time. Do fun things with each of those single concepts… they will comprehend it better… and then when the exceptions come… they will be more prepared to handle deviations from the rules! If all else fails, you can always use a writing tutor to help them.

Blog it… baby!

Essay writing for your fifth grader can actually feel like pulling teeth… all of them! Yet, writing is an essential part of learning, and should be incorporated into their daily learning. It is difficult for me to get them writing creatively…. I really find it hard. Yet, over the past several years I had the idea to have my older children start their own blogs. They could write whatever they wanted, the only catch was that they had to write on it at least twice a week… Wow… an electronic journal… It was amazing. They did a great job and still years later they are writing on their blogs.
This year, I have fifth graders again, and guess what?