Thursday, March 4, 2010

Beating Burnout

I attended my first ever Cypress Homeschool Association meeting last week and one of the topics on the table was "Beating Burnout".  Every student and teacher, whether they are in college, public school, homeschooled, etc., usually experiences burnout at some point during the school year.  The moms at the meeting shared many fun, educational ideas that they have used for beating burnout. 

Here are some of the ideas that were shared:

1. Declare your family to officially be on Spring Break and spend the week being a tourist in your own city.  I guess you could also call this a "staycation".  Who says that homeschoolers have to go on Spring Break at the same time that public schools do?!

2. Change up your curriculum.  Take a break from your usual school routine and try something new. 

3. Have an art camp!  Spend a week studying a particular style of art or a particular artist and have your child create his own works of art.  At the end of the week, take a field trip to your local art museum/gallery.  This would be a great thing to do with another homeschooling family.

4. Spend a week working on a lapbook.  
"Lapbooks are a great hands-on tool to reinforce and review lessons.  Basically, you take an average file folder, re-fold it, add a multitude of information in various folded books (called minit books), and you've got a lapbook.  This is a case of "a picture is worth a thousand words" -- you may want to look at examples.  It's important to remember that you don't need to lapbook every lesson you complete within a unit.  Don't discount the power of a simple conversational lesson with your student." - from Homeschool Share.

5. Have an Eat & Read Day.  Pick up a fresh bundle of books from the library and a few snacks and goodies that your child doesn't normally get to eat (soda, candy, all the stuff they beg you for!) and spend the afternoon reading the "new" books and snacking together.

6. Spend an afternoon at the library.  We do this every other week and the kids really enjoy it.  They love to play the computer games in the children's library and color at the activity table.  Meanwhile, I go around finding books that fit in to the next week's unit.

7. Have school somewhere else.  Do you normally school in the kitchen?  Change it up and have school in the backyard.  Or, get out of the house entirely and do school at a park or at a nature center.

 Here's Ella doing her math in the playhouse outside.

Basically, the whole idea is to temporarily change your routine and try something new that excites both you and your child.  If you have other homeschooling friends, then get together with them for some of these activities and do school together!

We'll be doing #3 with a friend soon - we'll be concentrating on ancient Egyptian art.  

Happy Homeschooling!

1 comment:

Elsie said...

So sad I missed the meeting... Thanks for posting the highlights. Lots of helpful tips for spring fever!!