Sounds nice in theory, right?
Then, you're hit with real life. To-do lists filled with errands and chores. Making sure you meet your state's homeschool requirements. Just keeping everyone fed, watered, clean, and alive can be a challenge some days.
How in the world are you supposed to fit in homeschool fun? And why would you even want to? Is it worth the time and energy?
Yes, yes, and yes! I would even shout it from the rooftops (and I'm petrified of heights!). Homeschool fun is most definitely worth it. Discover how this busy homeschool soccer mom to 5 boys discovered the benefits of homeschool fun and why our homeschool thrives with it.
Our Discovery of the Benefits of Homeschool Fun
During our journey to homeschooling, I had several life-changing revelations. When we pulled our two older boys from public school, we went through a natural deschooling process. This time period opened my eyes to the opportunities that learning fun can provide to a family.
I always knew that I wanted my kids to love learning. I was a student that fit well in a public school setting. Regurgitation of facts and figures for quizzes and tests easily came to me. I enjoyed the challenge of attaining perfect grades but can't say that I enjoyed the process of learning.
As I look back on my education, I realize that I look super smart on paper. I'm an excellent listener and note taker. Test taking was my jam! All of those skills are great (and really helped me as a mental health therapist).
But, I know that I missed out on so much. I was always too busy cramming for the next test or writing the next paper, with the sole purpose of earning a perfect grade.
Joy in the process of learning was not in my education equation. The ability to eloquently state my thoughts and opinions on a topic was not fully developed until graduate school. Working with different ages and stages, and all the wondrous life lessons that go with it, just didn't happen.
Taking an honest look at my educational experiences, I knew that I wanted more for my boys. I wanted my boys to feel comfortable thinking outside of the box. Most importantly, I wanted my boys to associate learning with positive experiences that will stick with them their whole lives.
I was very lucky to happen upon homeschool fun, how to easily add it to our day, and its many benefits.
What is Homeschool Fun?
Before moving on to its benefits, let's discuss the definition of homeschool fun. I'll preface this definition by saying that I truly believe that fun is a relative term. Therefore, I also believe that we all have (or can develop) our own working definitions. A good base to build upon would be:
Homeschool Fun: any activity, game, project, or other experience that results in learning fun and is enjoyed by all
That's a pretty generic definition, huh? Technically, any homeschool work could fall under this explanation. As it should.
Homeschool fun is really about your approach to homeschooling and learning. It can be intense or relaxed. Organized or shooting from the hip. 33 seconds or 33 days.
My point: homeschool fun is what you make it.
6 Benefits of Homeschool Fun
Knowing the benefits of homeschool fun helps me make sure that it happens every single day. If I thought it was just fluff or unnecessary, I wouldn't bother. However, I have experienced the boost that homeschool fun provides to our family and I just can't give that up. Here are a few of the benefits that my boys and I have had the pleasure of experiencing.
1. Helps Bridge Age Gaps
If you have multiple ages in your homeschool, then homeschool fun activities are for you! These types of activities can easily be adapted to different ages and stages. Homeschool fun helps you provides ways for all members of your homeschool to participate together.
2. Creates a More Relaxed Atmosphere
When you include homeschool fun into your day or week, your mindset shifts. Your approach to your homeschool naturally eases up as you start to consider all the different ways that you can use regular life situations to learn.
3. Builds Communication Skills
As you complete homeschool fun activities, a variety of communication skills are built. Your kids learn simple conversational skills as they collaborate on plans and make small talk as they work.
4. Boosts Outside the Box Thinking
Many homeschool fun activities encourage creative and imaginative thinking. Kids discover learning fun opportunities while playing a game or working on a project outside of their lesson plans. For example, one of my boys' favorite homeschool fun activities is their inventor's box. They spend hours designing, tinkering, and building. These special homeschool moments boost their problem solving skills and much more.
5. Expands Knowledge Base
Homeschool fun is not limited to core subjects nor curriculum. Your kids gain experience with and exposure to a variety of topics. My boys love learning about all sorts of cool things, like Avogadro's number to the Red Planet. It's incredible to hear them chatting about these concepts during homeschool lessons and play.
6. Cultivates Relationships
I have been told countless times by friends and strangers that they can't believe how well my boys get along. Random observations about how they help each other or play nicely just make my mama heart almost burst. They definitely aren't always angels but their relationships as brothers have significantly improved due to the benefits of homeschool fun.
My relationship with my boys has grown tremendously, too. Our connections over homeschool fun projects continue to bloom as we pick up the conversation over dinner or in the car. Through homeschool fun rules and expecations, my boys and I have built a whole new level of trust.
Homeschool fun doesn't have to feel like just one more thing to do. You CAN plan and prepare as you eagerly look forward to spending special learning fun moments with your kids. Reminding yourself of these benefits of homeschool fun can help 🙂
If you currently add fun to your homeschool, what benefits would you add to this list?
If you are new to this type of thinking, which benefits are you looking forward to the most?
Need help getting started with homeschool fun? Or want an easy & organized way to boost your homeschool? Homeschool Fun 2018 is a busy homeschool mom's dream come true for making sure learning fun happens.