Guest Author - Alissa Moy
Homeschool co-ops are a wonderful way to share ideas and learning with a group of fellow homeschoolers. Thinking of class ideas to teach at homeschool co-ops can be challenging, however. Many moms and dads have a hard time coming up with ideas for what they can successfully teach to not only their children, but also other homeschooled kids. While many cooperative groups offer ideas, as well as curriculum that has been purchased for the groups, many groups welcome creative and new class ideas form members. Here is a list of educational and exciting ideas to base a homeschool co-op class around. I have grouped them by ages, but as with most homeschool activities, classes can be adapted as needed. This first set of class ideas will be for the early elementary crowd.
Preschool through First Grade:
1. "Mother Goose Mayhem"- Use Nursery Rhymes as a base for this fun class. Plan to read several aloud each week, sing them with the kiddos, and act out the rhymes too. Crafts can be made to go alongside the rhymes you choose. DLTK offers a wonderful variety of crafts for both nursery rhymes and fairy tales that can be found at the link below.
2. "Games Kids Play"- Outdoor games are great for kids of all ages, but the younger elementary crew loves learning these time honored activities. Teach the children how to play Duck Duck Goose, Red Rover, Red Light-Green Light, Ring Around the Rosie and The Hokey Pokey. Choose five to ten new games a week to learn, and revisit the old ones, too. A great resource for game ideas is The Great Big Book of Children's Games by Debra Wise. There are fantastic outdoor and indoor game ideas. You can find this book below:
3. "Five In A Row"- Five in a Row is a superb curriculum that incorporates a cross curricular approach and reading classic books. The lesson plans are easy to understand, able to be customized and detailed. Your child will really love learning about science, social studies and math based on a classic, age appropriate book. Below you will find the Five in a Row (FIAR) curriculum, and you can try this unique program out with your homeschool co-op:
4. "Author of the Week"- Choose a different author each week for a fabulous story time. Beloved authors like H.A. Rey, Eric Carle, Norman Bridwell and Dr. Seuss are perfect authors to feature. You can find plenty of books at your local library and share several stories with your class each week. Have the students keep a journal of the author each week that is explored, and draw a picture of their favorite scene from the book they liked best.
5. "Happy About Holidays"- Celebrate a different holiday each week, reviewing when it occurs during the year, what it entails, and how it is celebrated. For example, have the students learn about May Day and have a fun May Pole game. Other holidays which are lesser known by the younger homeschool crew include Groundhog Day, St. Patrick's Day and Presidents Day. Below you can find several holiday books that you can share with your class: