Before a homeschool student can do a project or write a report about a unti study topic, he or she must understand it. One of the most popular ways of learning new materials is by reading it in books or on the internet. Narration is a method by which students can better understand and retain what they read. When using it with a homeschool unit study, it increases the knowledge and makes using the information easier.
What is Narration?
When the word narration is used in regard to homeschooling, the meaning stems from a part of the Charlotte Mason technique of home education. Essentially, narration requires your child to tell what he just read or heard in his own words. In the beginning, the student can read one paragraph and then orally narrate what they learned from it. They can also write it down in their own words. Narration can be either oral or written in this format.
To teach a child to use narration in the beginning, it is a good idea to explain the question words to them: who, what, where, when, how, and why. The answers to these questions will be the important information from anything they read. Instruct your child to pay attention to finding the answers to these questions when they read or listen to reading done by another.
How to Use Narration With Unit Studies
A homeschool unit study is entire lesson plan that focuses on one topic. For example, a lesson plan on plants would include growing plants, measuring them, reading about plants, writing a report about a favorite plant, and making leaf rubbings or dried plant pictures. Most unit studies will have some reading involved. It could be non-fiction or fiction, but it should give information about the topic in the unit study.
Using narration when learning about the unit study topic helps your homeschool student understand it better. First, read the first paragraph of a book about the topic. Then ask your student to put the paragraph in his own words. If he has trouble with this narration, ask leading questions about the topic. Eventually, the student will build up his or her narrating skills so they can do it with entire stories or articles of information.
Using narration in homeschool unit studies helps your student remember the facts better than reading alone. Since the retention and application of knowledge is the goal of all education, homeschool unit studies should be designed to include narration.