Teaching Tips

homeschooler-learning-map-skills-studies-globeTeaching Tips You Can Use In Your Homeschool

After over thirty years of homeschooling, I have so many teaching tips that really work! And, I love my children, and no one loves my children more than I do! No one. So, who is the best teacher? I am (and so are you)!

Even the most highly degreed teacher doesn’t have what you do and with all of the resources available today you don’t need to know the information to teach it. My children’s education has centered around everything from hands-on materials, science labs taught at home and trips to visit historical sites. We collected rocks in Georgia, climbed mountains (they climbed, I watched), went on hiking trips to various falls, collected fall leaves (we live in Florida so this was a treat), visited Washington DC, went to Canada and New York among many other places. Our learning was experiential and memorable.

And that is the crux. Teaching should be memorable or what is the point. Fast forward and all of my kids are now adults and successful in college, their jobs and with their families.

In a nutshell here are some of my Top 20+ Teaching Tips.

  1. One of my favorite teaching tips is creating a Family Statement of Faith – either a scripture verse or a motto. (As for me and my house we will serve the Lord.)
  2. This is another of my favorites! We begin every day with prayer – praying for others, The Pledge of Allegiance (someone got to hold the flag each day), and basic memory work depending on their age.
  3. A plan. Do you have a schedule? A list of books you will use? An actionable plan with goals.
  4. Don’t recreate the school in the home. Recess, lunch breaks, etc. Do try to take a moving break in between subjects, it helps stimulate the brain… No electronics – not even a computer except if you need it for school.Phones away from the school area.
  5. Organization is your friend. (Links) Organization Link here) Be sure to keep a large notebook with samples of the child’s work for each year. It can be divided into subjects and added to weekly or at least every two weeks. It makes the end of the year evaluation so much easier.
  6. Have time to do school and protect this time from interruption.
  7. Plan outings – field trips, or even trips to the dentist (which can be used as a field trip no matter what the age!) If these are on a master schedule it really helps.
  8. A year-long schedule
  9. Give your children a chance to speak in front of the family. This builds public speaking skills.
  10. Resources – I loved teaching with charts (more on this later), and real books, biographies (will do a podcast on this as well). This network is a great resource UHPN! Homeschool Highschool Podcast, College Prep Genius, Making Biblical Family Life Practical, Homeschool Sanity, Homeopathy for Mommies, Finish Well Radio, Homeschooling with Technology, Life as a Lifeschooler, Soft Skills, and so many more in our More Shows category.
  11. My recommendation with little kids is lots of hands-on and experiential learning.
  12. Teaching phonics, with a tactile approach (saltbox), etc, is important and basic math concepts.
  13. Multiple modalities like reading, writing, listening, discussions, and even acting or presenting the information. While tests are often expected in learning settings I avoided these and instead used opportunities to test my children’s ability to remember.
  14. Reading the kids good books begins when they are tiny and in our family extended through their teen years. We read a wonderful series like Little House on the Prarie and so many more. Some of our happiest memories surround reading.
  15. Learning is based upon the interest of the child, the interesting information and the instructor’s ability to engage. If you look at school like it is a chore your children will as well!
  16. Memorization using charts. We had number charts, fraction charts, bird charts, birds of prey, the states, the musical instruments in an orchestra and so many other charts. I used these each morning or during our breaks from schoolwork in order to break up the day, and have a fun activity that they enjoyed. I even made up a “test” of sorts. A list of the birds for example and when I pointed to them the kids could tell me the name of the bird.
  17. Read the material ahead and give a brief explanation with key points written on a marker board. (The kids can take notes. Answer questions, orally or by researching it.)
  18. Have the student read a book and write a one or two-page synopsis – they can teach the “class” what they learned.
  19. Incremental – with books you read, and workbooks/questions that are answered.
  20. Unit study. You become immersed in a topic or subject. You teach it though history, science, art – even music. You can study almost every subject (except for math) using this approach.
  21. Student lead – the child can explore topics of interest and learn all about it.
  22. Performances – kids learn by teaching others, as well as giving an oral report. Make this a key part of your homeschool even if you have an only child. Bring over friends and do this together.

Teaching tips that are the most useful are the ones that you feel will make your life easier!

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