Prevent the summer brain drain for your kiddos by creating a sensational, experimental, and fun summer of science for kids in your home.
We live on the outskirts of Hotlanta, and for us, summer is usually about kids’ camp, reading, and figuring out how to stay cool.
In the summer, it’s hard for us to stick to our regular schedule. We school on a more year round plan, but still take time off for summertime busyness. I don’t want them to spend their off days vegged out on the sofa, though.
I want to keep their brains engaged. To do so, we keep learning through the summer, without the schooling side of things. We get messy, make silly mistakes, and have fun delving into science.
Over the years, we’ve learned that we love science. My kiddos absolutely will devour books about sharks, volcanoes, and any engineering or STEM book they come across. So, I take this love of science and discovery, and channel it into a fun summer of learning and experimentation.
Here are seven tips about creating a fun and interesting summer of science for kids in your homeschool.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #1:
Pick a Theme for Each Week
Choose one theme per week to learn about. Make the themes things your kids are interested in. If you have a child who loves plants, choose a type of plant each week for three weeks. Have a child in love with ocean creatures? Let those creatures dominate your list.
If there is something your child is really interested in, let them study and learn for more than a week. They are going to enjoy the subject more if they are allowed to go in-depth.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #2:
Surround Your Kids with Books and Media
Kids are going to be more interested in something if it’s easy to get to. Surround your child with books on the topic of the week. Place a basket next to the sofa or recliner.
Make strong use of your library while you’re planning a summer of science. Use the book lists on this site and request books that are available in your library’s system.
To build on certain subjects, ask around for books to borrow from family and friends. Many times, your homeschooling friends are going to have a plethora of books available on any given subject.
Don’t just stop at books, though. Add DVDs, audio books, educational apps, and more to the list. If you’re learning about volcanoes, have a movie night and watch a movie about Hawaii. The main goal is to make learning an easy, accessible choice for the kids in your home.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #3:
Set a Routine that Includes Reading
Summer is a time to let go of much of your routine when it comes to school, but that doesn’t mean all routine has to die over the school break.
Set a routine for your family that includes daily responsibilities, household responsibilities, and time spent reading. In our home, the rule is that you have to complete your routine, read for an hour, and play outside before you are allowed to have TV or device time.
If you already have books handy for your kiddos on the subject of the week, it’s going to be easy for them to grab a scientific book for their reading time.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #4:
Remove work from the equation
During your summer break, make science a fun learning experience and remove work from the equation. Don’t give your kids any homework, assignments, or worksheets to complete while they are learning.
Let the information and experience bring science to life for them during their break. They will be much more inclined to enjoy and participate if they know they aren’t going to have to do work on top of their learning.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #5:
But….do add in journaling
If you want your children to do some kind of “work” related to the topics they are learning about, simply add summer journaling to their routine. Don’t insist that they write a ten paragraph entry about the experiment they did to show the result of mixing a base with an acid.
Instead, simply ask them to write down a few things from their day. Or, they can write a paragraph about the topic of the week. If your child is an artist, let them draw something they are learning. Keep it short, simple, and minimal to simply record experiences and basic information. Also, tailor the work to the child’s grade level.
If you want to take seasonal journaling a step further, grab your copy of the new TCHSL homeschool science journal for elementary and junior high students!
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #6:
Plan Your Experiments in Advance
Use the TCHSL Season of Science Planner to quickly and easily plan a summer of science for your students. Fill in the experiments or activities you want to do with your kids. Then, go through and make a list of all the supplies you’ll need to complete your activities.
Do all of your shopping in advance and create a box or kit for your activities. You can go as far as doing all the prep at once and bagging up each activity before the summer starts. Summer is a busy, intense time for homeschool parents. Get the prep done before it starts so you can easily pull everything out and have fun playing and learning with your kids.
Summer of Science for Kids Tip #7:
Get Messy – Outside
Don’t be afraid of messy, crazy activities or experiments. Summer is the perfect time to take the kids outside and let them make messes. What’s better than learning in your bathing suit?
Go outside, get messy, make things explode or change colors, and simply have a fun, interesting summer of science with your kids. Your family will make memories, and your kids will remember the really cool things they learn about this world we live in!
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