Guest Author - Alissa Moy
Last week I offered ideas for homeschool co-ops for children in grades Pre-k through second. This week I am focusing on the older elementary students, in grades two through five. Cooperative classes are a wonderful way to share your expertise and knowledge with not only your home schooled child, but also with his or her peers. Many parents are reluctant to teach a class, but you don't need to know it all to help children learn. All you need are some creative ideas for a class and dedication to teaching the children. Below you will find a list of potential class ideas for you, or perhaps you and another mom can team up to teach.
1. "Magic Tree House Club"- This super series is a perfect theme for a homeschool co-op class. Assign either a few chapters a week, a book a week, or a variation of these. Tailor the assignments to the grade level of your group. Each book is filled with ideas to spark your imagination, based on Jack and Annie's adventures. The website for The Magic Tree House has a vast array of ideas for both teachers and parents. This can be found below:
2. "Don't Bug Me!"- Make insects the star of your class! Get a variety of books on various bugs, as well as hands on examples. If anyone has an Ant Farm bring it in to share. Plan to make edible buggy treats like buggy jello (green jello with gummy bugs).
3. "Sing Out Loud"- Have a choral class for the homeschoolers who want to sing. Bring your IPOD with speakers with background music or choral music for students to sing along to. Print a songbook out with popular tunes, ranging from Yankee Doodle to holiday songs. Practice as a group and hold a concert at the end of the co-op session.
4. "Poetry Pizza"- Using an empty and clean pizza box as a storage box for your children's poetry, create a container full of a variety of poetic writing. Teach your students how to write rhymes, couplets, Acrostic poems, Limericks and more. A super reference book is Writing Poetry with Children by Jo Ellen Moore. This can be found below:
5. Habitats Around the World"- Explore the habitats/biomes around the world with your class. Learn about the weather in these places, animals and plants. Explore the polar regions, jungle, forests and deserts. You can have the children create shoebox dioramas to represent each habitat. Some reference ideas are below: