Calling All Homeschoolers- Cool Homeschool Ideas Wanted!

I was so excited when my son came up with the geography project.  (see previous post)  Now, I have been searching everywhere, racking my brain to come up with some cool projects for his other subjects.  He is so hands on that it really sinks in if he has projects as well as regular stuff to do.  So, after a couple of weeks of trying to figure out some projects, I am looking to you, my readers, to share your cool homeschool ideas!

Here are the things I could come up with. 

Each month, I plan on having him pick a subject.  Rather than doing the reading and questions, he will prepare a lesson and teach the chapter to someone else.  It’s been said that teaching is the best way to learn things.  (I have experienced this many times since I started homeschooling!)  The other bonus to this is getting him to feel comfortable in different situations- presenting information and answering questions.  We did this once last year- I didn’t think of it until the end of the year.   But, it was really great.  He really knew his material.  And, the few things he wasn’t sure about, they discussed together and figured it out together.  But, had he not been teaching, the areas of confusion wouldn’t have come up.  So, it was a great experience.  He started out nervous, but by the end, he was feeling very confident.  SO, I figure that by doing it monthly, he will be a pro in no time!

For history, I have 2 thoughts.  The first is to use our Sunday night movie time- or another time- to watch a movie set in the time period we are studying.  I’m sure they won’t all be factual.  But, they would at least give him an idea of life- how people lived, what they ate, how they talked, etc- during that time period.  We are starting with the civil war.  I wonder if he would watch Gone With the Wind with me… 

The second history idea is to find recipes from the time period and let him cook a meal or part of a meal.  He really enjoys cooking so this might be fun for him.  Maybe not for the rest of us- depending on what strange things they ate!

So, those definitely don’t seem too exciting or earth shattering compared to the geography project.  Nor do they seem as encompassing of material and facts as the geography project.  But, I do realize we don’t have time to do major things in every subject. 

All of that aside, I am anxious to hear what things you have done, heard about, or are planning to try this year.  So, send me your comments and we can all learn from each other! 

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Explore posts in the same categories: civil war, cooking, geography, gone with the wind, history, homeschool, homeschool ideas, map, project, recipes, son, states

15 Comments on “Calling All Homeschoolers- Cool Homeschool Ideas Wanted!”

  1. rowdyrodi Says:

    ooh goodie this is a good one. Give me a day or two and I will post my ideas for you, I can’t wait to see what others say as well.

    Hold that thought I will return *grin*

  2. rowdyrodi Says:

    okay I’ve got nadda. Sorry. I was hoping more people would give you some great ideas so I could borrow them as well. *grin*

    We are going to make a quilt this year. A simple 9 piece one. That way we will have 4 equal sized squares in the corners. We have 4 kids so…. each kid will have a corner to personalize. I am thinking we will use one of our read aloud books as the focus. Of course the 2 year old will have to rely on mom’s help a bit *smile* They are loving The Wind in the Willows right now so that might be a good choice. Lots of ideas for the kids to use for sketches in their square.


  3. We’re running through 5 cultures in Ancient History this year, so I hear your history dilemma! We are definitely doing the movie/cook a dinner night, but we are also doing:

    * a watercolor painting of the map of each country, then after it dries, labeling it with colored pencils;
    * learning about the culture through its pre-history stories (myths and legends, or the stories that are the basis for their religious beliefs);
    * linking ancient cultures to all of our lessons, e.g.: we’ll be learning about Egyptian math, painting heiroglyphics in art, and making Sumerian mosaics.

  4. mrsghost Says:

    Sounds like great ideas! My son loves art. I’ll work on that aspect a little more. Thanks!

  5. mrsghost Says:

    A quilt is a great idea, too! You can have that foever. My son liked Wind and the Willows, too. I think it would have many quilt possibilities. i also hope to get more feedback and ideas. Maybe next week since I submitted this post to the carnival…

  6. yfs Says:

    Okay, as a teacher, I feel like I should be brimming with cool ideas here… but I’m not. Which is especially sad because I love history and was only one credit short of an actual history minor! One thing that might help is to not only do the “history” of a certain time, but to go into more depth… kinds of music, entertainment, art, etc. I’ll do some thinking and searching and get back to you… if you’re really stuck for ideas, one of my best friends from college just happens to be a Jr. HIgh social studies teacher 🙂

  7. yfs Says:

    What about following the development of and changes in a particular city? Chicago? La Porte? Joliet? etc.

  8. yfs Says:

    What about a “History Question of the Week?” or making a US History trivia game, adding cards & questions as you go? Also, if there’s something of particular interest… wars, politics, Abe Lincoln, etc maybe highlight and relate things to that? Dover has some nice books that have history-related models that you cut out and put together… check out this website: http://www.fun-books.com/us_history.htm I especially like the “World War II for Kids: A History with 21 Activities by Richard Panchyk”. It’s recommended for ages 9+. How about doing newpapers, newscasts, or radio broadcasts, etc to cover the history from a particular time? How about some sim games like “Oregon Trail”? Or this one at: http://www.nationalgeographic.com/features/97/west/? You can follow Lewis & Clark and help them make important decisions on their journey. Okay, that’s all for now… I’m still looking, but IE is acting up and I’m afraid I’ll lose what I’ve already found. Plus, I need to get to work on stuff for my own classroom. G’night…

  9. Fatcat Says:

    Try reading books from this site
    http://www.abookintime.com

    Do a timeline on the wall and add to it as you go.

    Do notebooking.

    Visit reinactments, history fairs.

    Visit all the historical markers in your county.

    Dress up and have a dinner of the period.

    Konos is a really good curriculum for hands-on learners.

    Hands and Hearts History Kits http://www.handsandhearts.com look like a lot of fun.

    There’s a free American History curriculum at this site.
    http://www.ourlosbanos.com/homeschool/history/americanhistoryindex.html

  10. HappyCampers Says:

    I think your cooking idea is fabulous! I have an old WWII cookbook, and it was so fun to go through with my 13yo and look at all the substitutions suggested due to rationing. Many of the period recipes we couldn’t make because I honestly had no idea what some ingredients even were, but we made a few & tried the subsitutions and it was really fun!


  11. […] and let him cook a meal or part of a meal. He really enjoys cooking so this might be fun for him. * Enthusiasm for Forensic Science in our […]

  12. Sheri Says:

    For History we’re planning to do an in-depth study of our city. Since we live in our Nation’s Capital (Ottawa, Canada) we have plenty of opportunities to get out and visit important sites and museums.

    Some great ideas here.


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  15. Carol Says:

    A great site for history, with geography resources also, is http://www.ABookInTime.com. It features reading lists, maps, crafts, timelines, and more (all in chronological order) for supplementing hands-on history!


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