As experienced homeschoolers know, a successful and enriching curriculum is all about learning to make the most out of your resources. Creativity is a must.
Your local community is potentially an untapped resource that you could be using to take your homeschooling efforts up a level.
There are a lot of great resources online to help you create the perfect lesson plans such as https://studentreasures.com/teachers-lounge/lesson-plans/fourth-grade/. They are ideal for resources and inspiration. When planning your lessons, you can weave in creative ways to use your local surroundings.
It doesn’t matter where you live, whether it’s a suburban neighborhood or metropolitan city, here are some great ideas to use your hometown in your homeschooling.
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Getting out into nature is a great way to bring those science lessons to life. Even a local park that has some greenery, and perhaps a pond, is full of real-life examples that bring those lesson plans to life. Take to nature and explore the local plantlife and even wildlife in a natural environment.
If you’re in an area that doesn’t have a lot of light pollution from housing or street lights, then it’s also a perfect opportunity to get out and see the stars and put any learning about space into practice. You can start by identifying stars, planets, and constellations with a simple telescope.
There are so many opportunities for children to visit any cultural attractions in your area. Museums, art galleries, theatres, and even books stores can all be used instead of relying on textbooks or the internet. Seeing a play on stage, rather than just reading it, can add a new dimension to learning.
Investigating the history of your community is an ideal way to encourage a number of skills. Not only will they be learning about the history of their hometown, but by discovering it together, you can develop research and critical thinking skills by having kids do their own research and investigations. You can have fun finding out about the political, cultural, and social history of your home. If any famous or important people were born in your area, you can explore their lives as a little side project.
You can also use your local town to underpin any lessons in urban geography.
What better way to learn about a range of career options than by hearing from those people in person. Ask some other local homeschooling parents if they would like to have a group session and invite people from your local community to talk at a ‘careers day’. A great cross-section of professions is usually available in any community. Retail, public servants, law enforcement and emergency services, law, teaching, hairdressing.
It’s important for kids to have opportunities for free play. It improves health and wellbeing, which in turn is good for their cognitive development. Visit a park, pool, or bowling alley every once in a while to blow off some steam.
Even with the most well-equipped homeschool setup, it’s great to use your local area to add depth and interest to your lesson plans. Even if you don’t live in a busy metropolitan area, there are still many chances to learn and explore if you know where to look.