Even those of us who homeschool year round take a break at some point in the summer. Whether you are enjoying a brief summer reprieve or a full blown summer vacation, you’ll enjoy these ideas for making the most of those hot summer days.

1. Take a break!

Use the summer to enjoy your family! Forget about homeschooling for a while and just be mom. After a few weeks, you’ll be rested and ready to gear back up again.

2. Try a nature study.

If you haven’t spent time outdoors during the year, you can easily make up for it in the summer. You can spend time in the national parks, the local park, or your own back yard. Start a garden, chase bugs (lots of THOSE in the summer…), sketch, or grow herbs.

Here are a few more nature study ideas:

  • 10 Ideas for Nature Study
    Ideas to get you started.
  • For the Love of Bugs
    Jill Novak offers great ideas for studying, journaling, drawing, and writing about…bugs!
  • Nature Study
    See if these ideas from Catherine Levison don’t get you motivated to spend time with your children enjoying nature!
  • Nature
    More nature studies, resources, free eBooks, and ideas.
  • Start a Nature Notebook
    “In summer, the screen door bangs shut as they enter the kitchen with bright red scratches, bee stings, their clothes covered with grass stains and stick-tight seeds, to show you their treasures. I can remember, when we lived in the hot south, chasing a Blue-tailed Western Skink around our living room floor with a battered butterfly net. The children had such fun, laughing in the excitement, but I wasn’t laughing. To my great relief, this foot-long lizard was finally contained in a mop bucket and drawn into our Nature Notebooks. It proved to be a colorful and impressive entry.” Ideas on making a nature notebook from Karen Andreola.

3. Work through a unit study.

Summertime is a great time to pursue your interests as a family. There are many unit studies available (many are free online), one of which is sure to spark an interest. Or better yet, use your current family interest to build your own unit.

4. Read inspiring and motivating books for Mom.

How-to, encouragement, motivating tips, and ideas — all available in books written by other homeschool moms. By investing time now in preparation, you’ll be ready to jump into another year.

5. Work on a new approach.

Was something missing from your studies this past year? Was the spark gone?

Spend time reading about the various methods. Make a note of those approaches that sound interesting and give them a short test drive this summer.

6. Look for new homeschooling ideas.

Did you have problems motivating a child this past year? Could you use some suggestions for simplifying? Would you like to add some innovative ideas to your educational mix?

Take a tip from the Teaching Toolbox!

7. Spend time scheduling.

Once you are inspired, have worked on new approaches and ideas for next year, and have your plans generally laid out, summer is a great time to revamp your schedule or develop an entirely new one.

It doesn’t have to be a minute-by-minute plan, but an overall guide will keep your homeschool running smoothly next year.

8. Develop spiritually.

The best place we can invest our time this summer is in our walk with the Lord. All of our plans, hopes, dreams and goals for our children and families should be prayerfully brought before Him. Under His guidance, we will find that we have everything we need to homeschool with success.


Further Reading

An Eternal Summer
“Keep your eyes and ears open to God’s voice and His divine appointments this summer, and as you do, you will make an eternal difference in someone’s life — it may be yours!” Deborah Wuehler has some ideas for making your summer “An Eternal Summer.”

Sensational Summer Studies
“A break from the routine of textbooks and school doesn’t mean that summer isn’t a time for learning. In fact, many unique opportunities for outdoor learning abound in summer. Here are a few fun ideas to keep young and old minds sharp and thinking through the lazy days of summer.” More light summer study ideas from Deborah Tukua at Home School Enrichment.

A Summer Schedule
“Summer is the perfect time to schedule in those activities you always want to do with the children but never have the available time. I make it a priority to put in the children’s schedule and in my schedule time to read out loud. I also want to have individual time with each child at least weekly. Simply include a block of time in the summer schedule and make a list of what you want to do with the children. When we have a schedule in place, this assures that I don’t allow myself to be consumed with my personal projects, putting off time I want to spend with the children.” Summer scheduling ideas from Teri Maxwell.

Time for Summer Schedule Planning
“I keep a running list of projects I would like to get done during that organizational hour, prioritize it, and jump in when summer begins. I also like to look back over what I have done during previous summers to help me know what to tackle this year.” Making summer a productive planning time. From Teri Maxwell.

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