Hello friends and unexpected homeschoolers!
I have been homeschooling since my oldest was 5 and have found lots of great resources I have fallen in love with over the years. Since we are all in this harried social-isolation situation together, I thought I would share a couple of my favorite homeschool resources and ideas. I will break it into a couple of posts – here is part one! These are parent and kid approved. To me, the best learning tools are the ones that spark wonder and where you don’t realize you are learning because you are having so much fun. These all fit that bill.
Geography & World Studies:
Maps by aleksandra mizielinska and daniel mizielinski is a book that EVERYONE should own. It is just so beautiful. They also have a special edition version that just came out with 16 additional maps (on my wish list ha ha!). One of our favorite things to do with this is to pick a country and then take turns picking images off the page that we look up on YouTube. We have learned SO many cool things about the world this way. It is like a virtual trip without leaving your couch!
World Snack Boxes:
Fun, themed snacks make everything more fun. We used to have a subscription to Top Munch snack boxes (which maybe closed?) when we got one, we would do a “Worldly Tea Time” where we would learn all about the country featured, dress up, listen to traditional music, and then sample lots of fun snacks from the country. Usually I just find things around the house that go with the theme to set the table. I have been seeing a lot about Universal Yums which is a similar service. Have any of you tried it? When we studied Japan, we ordered this snack pack from amazon. It was so fun and reasonable!!
Math is a subject I happen to love and my kids are not so convinced on ha ha. But we do agree that these resources are great –
Dragon Box Math Apps
I cannot speak highly enough of these cool apps – but my favorite is their Algrebra 5+. By the end of solving the puzzles, kids are solving complex algebra equations without even realizing it. And they are FUN! I would recommend all of them! They have something for all ages.
I think the idea of these books is so cool. They come as a set of two – a graphic novel and a workbook. The way they approach math is so refreshing. My kids do get frustrated with these sometimes because they can be CHALLENGING! But I love that about them. And I love that they help you understand the larger concepts rather than just rote memorization. I would recommend going down a grade though because of difficulty.
Monument Valley Games
Beautiful Escher inspired artwork, a serene soundtrack, and fabulous mind bending logic puzzles – a must play. We have come back to this one a lot. Probably my favorite app game of all time.
I have been so impressed by these logic board games – many of them work for 1 player! They are fun for ALL ages and I love how well made and designed they are. Our current favorite is Camelot Jr.
We listened to these Classical Kids albums when I was a kid. I loved them then and I still love them now (as do my kids!)! They are stories about fictional kids intertwined with real stories about the composers and their music. You can listen to them all on Spotify. My favorites are –
“Beethoven Lives Upstairs”
“Vivaldi’s Ring of Mystery”
“Mozart’s Magic Fantasy”
These are paper printable that you cut out and fold to build incredible 3D paper structures. As long as you have yardstick paper, scissors, glue, and a color printer, there are some pretty incredible models you can make. These are for you puzzle minded, model builder types and are pretty darn cool – and FREE! We have built several models of famous architecture around the world. These are definitely better for older kids/adults with good fine motor skills. If you love 1000 piece puzzles, you will love these.
These are my favorite brand of puzzles. Solid well made pieces and beautiful artwork. We particularly love this dragon puzzle –
I love these kids cookbooks from Deanna F. Cook. They are full of pictures and fun tips. There is a great selection of recipes that are kid friendly and tasty! We have all three of her cookbooks and the kids pull them out consistently. So many good things to be learned from cooking!
The two beautiful books – A Poem for Every Night of the Year & A Poem for Every Day of the Year edited by Allie Esiri are my favorite poetry books I have ever found. They follow themes and take you through the seasons sourcing from both ancient and modern poets. I have found them to be kid friendly while also enriching for adults. I pick my copies up constantly to add depth to our days.
Let me know if you found this list helpful! Any particular subjects/categories you would like help with? I have tons more favorites I will work on compiling for part two. Also I have lots of other homeschooling ideas and resources you can dig into if you need more! Sending you all my love!