For many homeschoolers, the summers are not that different from the rest of the year. You can keep accumulating credits for your learning through the summers, and this can make the entire year much easier. As well as remembering to never stop learning or teaching, the summer is usually the time for you to re-file your letter-of-intent or affidavit to your local school district, schedule and submit your yearly evaluation, and generally re-evaluate your lesson plans and progress.
The summer is an ideal time to pursue many studies that may be impossible in the other seasons. Students can get their swimming levels increased, or try their hand at life-saving with local programs like Red Cross swimming classes. Summer camps and regional recreation classes can often provide education requirements, especially in the arts and sciences. Performances and specialized camps can enhance a homeschool curriculum. Check out all the possibilities at your neighborhood parks, museums, and colleges.
Don’t forget options for teens to practice work skills in summer jobs, or to help at those same camps and programs. This can lead to career choices and improve decisions about colleges. Of course, the time-honored occupations of summer such as lawn-mowing and gardening can be learning opportunities, business ventures, and earnings toward more lofty pursuits.
Summer vacations can be excellent curriculum programs. You may want to explore some of the interesting work-study venues at parks, or the often-free programs offered for children at state and regional parks. Or family trail maintenance projects at these as well as national parks.
Nature and cultures, museum specials, team sports, and travels with groups are all part of summers. This can be a travel-abroad chance or something within your own country. Homeschoolers are eligible for many of the same programs offered to public school students. As well, scouting or 4-H groups often travel in the summers, to accommodate all their members. Check out all those trips, and keep a journal for credit, if you go.
Many homeschool programs have specials in the summers for buying curriculum, new or used. This is a great time to clean out your own materials and swap with other homeschooling families for the next level you need. Check online at your favorite suppliers, or in local resource centers and libraries. If you have an advanced student, this is a good time to get used textbooks from college students. Check your local campuses.
It’s always good to remember that summer is a time to slow down a bit and enjoy the weather. Beat the heat with quiet time. Summer reading programs at libraries are a wonderful way to socialize and keep up reading skills over the summers. Summer is a chance to link up with friends and neighbors or to travel with your family in prime weather. Homeschoolers may not have the same problems with the summer gap that public school kids have, but it’s good to celebrate the seasons and to make summers special.