This week we are talking about getting dad involved in your homeschool. Read the opening to this series here. You can find the links to the other days here also (as they are posted).
So how can dad take on an active role in your homeschool? No matter how busy dad is with work and family responsibilities, there are still ways to be active in the kids’ education.
A great way for a busy dad to get more involved in homeschooling is to help with subject review. An easy way to do this is to play an educational game or drill some flashcards several times per week.
This does not mean you have to formally plan out games and rills. This means dad can plan into his busy schedule two or three nights (or days, whatever works for his schedule) where he takes 30 minutes or 60 minutes or whatever he can spare and plays games with the children to review the subjects or basic educational knowledge.
So what kinds of games? You probably have some on hand but it doesn’t have to be anything special. Get out Monopoly and work on counting money, play Yahtzee and work on math, or Scrabble and work on spelling and vocabulary. If you have older children, these games still work or try trivia games. here are some games appropriate for various age groups:
- Toddler/Preschool – Chutes and Ladders, Memory, Candy Land, Go Fish (make your own Memory or Go Fish game with number or alphabet cards), Color/Shape matching games
- Elementary – Sight Word Go Fish, Spelling Word Go Fish, Jr. Scrabble, Scrabble, Yahtzee
- Middle School/ High School – Monopoly, Risk, Battleship, Yahtzee, Scrabble, trivia games
You may also wish to spend some time drilling flashcards or memory work. Maybe you play a game twice a week and drill flashcards twice a week. If your child is studying math, drill facts flashcards; learning a language, then quiz them on new words; or even work on spelling or vocabulary words. There is no need for a set schedule unless you want or need one. Just pick something based on need or the time you have.
Let’s face it – life gets in the way at time. Even if you only have 15 minutes, your kids will benefit from the quality time you spend. Quality will always outweigh quantity.
So what if you have multiple kids representing many age groups – how d you find the time? Thirty minutes with each child could add up to 5 hours quickly. Your best bet is to find games that include multiple ages. Make up your own game and quiz them on what they need on their turn. There are many ways you can do this. Or just pick a game each night or two and work with a particular child and switch up the children that it helps. The older kids will benefit from review and enjoy the interaction and the little kids can be on “dad’s team” against the older kids. There are many ways you can do this to make it fun and educational for everyone. And remember — sometimes the goal is to help the kids feel that dad is engaged and interested in their schooling and spending quality time with dad, not just drilling spelling words. Don’t fret, just invest a little time and see the benefits multiply.
Does dad participate in educational games in your homeschool? What are your favorite family learning games?