A Better Way to Homeschool: Using Notebooking To Add Creativity and Depth To Your Lessons

As a homeschooler, you have total freedom to express yourself and what you are learning in a way that suits your learning style and personality. With many, many, many curriculums to choose from, it is understandable to see why many homeschoolers are falling into the worksheet mentality.

Worksheets are easy to assign. Worksheets are either done or incomplete. Many parents enjoy the boundaries offered by a worksheet; but is that the best for your child?

Ask yourself these questions:

    Is the assignment my child is working on destined for the trash can?
    Will my child understand the topic better by completing this assignment?
    Is my child excited to finish the task at hand?
    Does my child look for ways to share this assignment with others? Are they proud of their work?

There is a better way. Let me introduce you to the art of notebooking. Don't tune out yet. You do not need to be creative! Phew! All you need is a rich collection of books, articles, or textbooks and a healthy supply of enticing supplies, and your child will basically do the rest.

Well, it may not be that easy, but almost. Your child knows when something is simply a time filler. I have been guilty of this type of teaching. If you have been homeschooling any length of time you will recognize this to be true. When I hand my children a piece of notebook paper and tell them to write something, they are more than likely going to stare at the blank page for some time before doodling all over the edges.

Notebooking templates create a very different response. There is something magical about a neat and creatively organized sheet of paper containing very manageable spaces for varying pieces of information. There are thousands of notebooking templates available today. I was hand making my templates for my kids until recently. Even a simple box for an illustration and a few lines for explanation changes the way my own kids attacked an assignment. Now when they read a story, or learned about an event in history, or completed a science experiment is was manageable for them to illustrate the point that struck them as most interesting and then writing a few good sentences to describe what they drew.

The first thing I noticed was that the manageable template yielded a better product most of the time. The second thing I noticed was that the kids could not wait to show their assignments off. I began experimenting with template styles and presentations. I started putting their pages into plastic page protectors and notebooks. A Funny thing happened. The more time I took to showcase their work, the more the kids applied themselves the next time. If the assignment was for their "book" they attacked it head on. If it was a simple worksheet, they hardly gave it a second glance once completed.

Article Source: Bekki Sayler

No comments:

Post a Comment