It’s been awhile since I did a homeschool-related post, so I thought I’d share a winter homeschool update (now that it’s almost spring)!
We started school in early August, so we’re around seven months into our current homeschool year. With only a few months of this school year left I thought I’d share how this year has gone so far.
This was the first year in some time that we only had four children in our homeschool. Since my oldest graduated last spring, this year seemed different than many of the previous years.
This year we have 11th, 8th, 6th and 2nd grades (you can see our curriculum choices for this year here).
Winter Homeschool Update
Keeping everyone’s morale up during winter days can be a challenge. Along with our schoolwork, we made sure to enjoy lots of outside time in the snow, and many cups of hot cocoa.
I had some of this peppermint hot cocoa mix stashed away in Mason jars, just waiting for winter days. It was such a special treat after an afternoon of playing in the woods on the frozen creek.
Our winter nature study has mostly consisted of just studying things as we come across them. My children always excitedly show me any nests they find, as they know how much I love them!
We read lots of winter and snow-themed books (check out our list of favorite winter picture books here). I’m kind of addicted to picture books, despite the fact that I have a houseful of teenagers!
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We’ve collected quite a few winter picture books through the years!
I think if I had to pick my absolute favorites they would be:
- Snowflake Bentley
- One Winter’s Day
- Cold Snap
- Winter on the Farm
- Winter Days in the Big Woods
- Sugar Snow
- The Snowy Day
In the Kitchen Together
We all naturally seem to gravitate toward the kitchen on cold winter nights. I love it when everyone is in the kitchen cooking together. Homemade pizza seems to be everyone’s favorite thing to make.
We also made lots and lots of popcorn. Popcorn balls, caramel popcorn, popcorn with cheese powder, and just plain buttered popcorn.
Whenever the weather would allow, we went outside. Or at least I made sure the kids went outside pretty much every day. Sometimes I would go out to play with them.
We were so thankful for these two new outside “toys” that I got for free with Zulily credits (they were group Christmas gifts).
The first item is this rope ladder. We attached it to a tree in our backyard, and everyone loves to climb it and swing on it.
The second group toy was this platform swing, which is so great because more than one child can swing on it at the same time!
The description says it “supports kids and adults swinging, standing, or sitting, and holds up to 250 pounds.”
We’ve had a lot of fun with it, and you can even recline on it! I think it would be a great place to swing and read a good book this summer.
When I made our homeschool plans for this school year, I had high hopes, as I always do, that everything will be a “win.”
This year, we have absolutely loved the history. Well, I think the younger ones have enjoyed it more than my older daughter. While she has learned a lot with the Notgrass History books she’s using, she hasn’t exactly used the word “love” to describe her history books.
As an 11th grader, she’s had quite a bit of rigorous work to do this year, and she found it difficult to find time to fit everything in.
But for those of us using Beautiful Feet Books history guides, I’d say this year has been great. I’ve especially enjoyed the Early American History books my youngest and I have read together.
He seemed to love the D’Aulaires’ books most of all. All of them, but especially Leif the Lucky, Benjamin Franklin, and George Washington seemed to really capture his interest.
He’s growing so much, and he’s my youngest, so I cherish the time I get to spend with him, reading aloud, learning together, and making memories.
Our science choices have been a success as well, except we are needing to catch up on doing some of the hands-on projects and experiments. I often find it hard to fit those in.
We have also loved Right Start Math for my youngest. I didn’t think I’d ever be able to say math was fun, but we’ve actually had fun this year and learned a lot.
Grammar and spelling have worked well, but Latin and Writing have gone by the wayside. I’m actually thinking about doing those this summer. It seems everyone gets bored without something structured to do in the summer anyway, so it makes sense to just continue on with the learning activities.
All in all, it’s been a good year. I’m already making plans for next year! If you homeschool, how are things going for your family?
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