A Spoonful of Sugar

Making every day life as a mom just a little bit sweeter.

Extra Extra! Read all about it! March 9, 2010

Kaitlyn and Madelyn tearin' it up on their ripsticks!

A lot of people think that when you home-school you have to miss out on extra-curricular activities for your kids. So not true! Since I have been a home-school mom, I have always felt it was extremely important to make sure my kids got P.E., music, art, and other courses that they would have gotten in a public school setting. These are just some of the ways we’ve made it possible for our family:

Physical Education:

McKenna getting in her 30 minutes on the treadmill...

Now, this is what we’ve been doing recently, because we live in a small town without a lot of options for sports teams, etc.

When it was possible, they participated in soccer, and took dance, which gave them great opportunities to work well with other kids their age.

Different times in life call for different activities. We just roll with it!

When the weather is permitting, I kick them out of the house and require a certain amount of time be spent on their bikes, scooters, ripsticks, or other cardio activities of their choice. Getting time in the sun is extremely important, too, since schooling around the table doesn’t supply much vitamin D!

Home Economics:

Madelyn cleaning onions from the garden...

Kaitlyn bustin' out the laundry!

I’ve said it before, cooking is a lost art in today’s society, for the most part. I have always tried to instill in my girls the importance of knowing how to grow, pick, prepare, and cook food. I just think it’s important. We started a garden last year, and the girls were a big part of it. It was great! Whenever possible, I involve them in the dinner-making process, besides having times when I teach them individually how to use different kitchen tools, or cooking methods.

I teach a home-economics class on Tuesdays in my home for 9th-12th grade kids, and allow my girls to help and be a part of

Madelyn took this picture with her mad photography skills...also extra-curricular!

that as well. They are the ‘junior sous chefs’!

I tell them all the time…”You don’t have to love it, you just have to learn how to do it. If you and your husband someday choose to eat out every night, that’s your prerogative, but it won’t be because I didn’t teach you how to cook!”

McKenna making her fave...chocolate chip cookies!

I also think it’s important for them to learn how to run a household and keep up with every day chores. Allowing them to realize how gross it is to find bunched up, dirty socks in the hamper, or letting them see that cleaning up their room and throwing clean clothes in the hamper only makes for MORE LAUNDRY! Ugh!

It gives them a feeling of ownership in the home and allows them to take a little more pride in their surroundings.

Art and Music Lessons:

Kaitlyn getting an evening guitar lesson from Dad!

Now, we are fortunate that my husband and I both come from musical backgrounds.

He has been teaching our oldest daughter to play the guitar for about a year now. She’s getting really good!

My middle daughter plays the drums, which I am able to teach her. She’s a natural!

My 7-year-old is doing her best on the piano, but we have yet to find a local teacher. Their talented cousin helps her out when we visit, and always gives her something to practice at home.

Cousin Elijah imparting some of his amazing knowledge!.

Find out what your kids want to do…You’d be surprised at their interests!

All three of my girls also have had an art curriculum for the last 5 years that I absolutely love .

It’s called Draw Write Now. Next year will be the first year my oldest daughter won’t be using this curriculum, because she’ll be in 7th grade.

There are eight books in the curriculum to choose from. For under twenty bucks including blank workbooks, they receive colorful, easy-to-follow drawing lessons, text for practicing handwriting, theme-related questions, answers, and book lists in a child-friendly format. It’s awesome!

This is what it looks like

McKenna in Kindergarten with her first 'Draw Write Now' picture!

So, there it is. Diversity at it’s finest! I hope this encourages all of you home-school families, educates those of you contemplating the idea, or at least is entertaining for those of you content with your school situation! What are some of your extra-curricular activities?


3 Responses to “Extra Extra! Read all about it!”

  1. Aunt Kick Says:

    Cool and wonderful ideas. I don’t homeschool but many of these ideas can be added to what we do outside of the traditional schooling. Thanks for the tips.

  2. Laura Says:

    I was just thinking of things I want to do with Samuel this coming year. That workbook looks awesome. I think Im going to let Rob try to teach Samuel the guitar. We will see how that goes and Im going to put him in a sport activity. He will also be going to Royal Rangers on Wed. nights at the church. I so hope he likes that. I love that his “schooling” will not just be from 8-3 and that I get the great pleasure of teaching him. I am sooo excited. I also find it odd that whenever God places something about homeschooling or my children on my heart you end up writing about it on your blog…hmmmmm. Thanks Janine

  3. Kelly Says:

    I’m going to start calling my kids’ chores, “home economics.” I like that. 😉

    Seems like you’re doing a fantastic job giving your girls a well-rounded education.

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