Posts Tagged ‘unit studies for homeschool’

Unit Studies for Homeschool

Friday, September 26th, 2014


Have you considered unit studies for homeschool? Last night I did a live interview about unit studies:

Here are some of the questions we covered. We ended up talking about high school and other topics, too! We never got around to the burnout question, but I’ll cover it in a future hangout:

1. What is a unit study?

When you pull together all kinds of fun activities for one topic of study, you have a unit study. Homeschoolers will do unit studies about a certain time period in history or a science topic their children want to explore. When all subjects (besides math) are tied together, retention is higher. For a Renaissance unit study, you could enjoy watching Shakespeare in the park, write poetry, read about Leonardo da Vinci, and create your own invention.

2. How do you put together a unit study?

First you would collect books from the library about this topic. I always look for supporting DVD’s, which you have to be careful to preview before showing your kids. You can decorate a notebook about that topic, and have your children do fun writing assignments about what they are learning. Create field trips and hands-on learning experiences to go along with your study, and you will have mastered that topic.

3. How can you get ahead on academics through unit studies? How does that work?

You can definitely get ahead academically through unit studies in the content areas. Those would be history and science. We covered all the time periods in history several times, and we covered each topic in science in-depth. We ran out of science topics, and my kids were ready for high school science at age 10 because we had gone so in-depth on each of the topics. My son Stephen began high school Biology at age 10 and aced all his Biology exams. He now wants to be a microbiologist.

4. Do you have to do crafts if you use unit studies?

No, you do not need to do crafts if you do unit studies. But part of what unit studies stands for is hands-on learning. So you can cook a meal from the time period you are studying (that’s not a craft), or go on a field trip that correlated with that topic (which is also not a craft). Many families who do unit studies don’t do any crafts but instead create a notebook where they can bring to life that topic through drawings, creative writing, or 3-dimensional pages that have fold-outs or envelopes that you put something into.

5. How do you not burn out while doing unit studies?

That’s a great question and one that I’m asked a lot. I do unit studies in spurts. We might only read living books for 3 weeks, and then on the fourth week we do a ton of hands-on activities all back-to-back. If you’ve just had a new baby, you can read to the kids for a while. One year when I was exhausted from a new baby (or some other trauma in my life), I read great classic works of literature for the Middle Ages, and it wasn’t until I regained my strength by the end of the year that we did tons of hands-on activities like a Medieval feast and a huge cardboard castle. So you can homeschool with unit studies, and it doesn’t have to be labor intensive.

Unit Studies for Homeschool

Friday, December 7th, 2012


Where can you find unit studies for homeschool? Some of you were asking for a tour of my huge Unit Study Treasure Vault. It’s loaded with almost 1,000 rich pages of fun material for unit studies, all instantly available when you join as a member. Over 100 unit studies are there, with supporting articles and embedded videos. Here are some of the unit studies:

  • Pond Life Unit Study
  • Human Body Unit Study
  • Astronomy Unit Study
  • Microscope Unit Study
  • DNA Unit Study
  • Genetics Unit Study
  • Birds Unit Study
  • Hatching an Egg
  • Bridge Unit Study
  • Dry Ice Unit Study
  • Mushroom Unit Study
  • Earthworms Unit Study
  • Engines Unit Study
  • Fossils Unit Study
  • The Cell Unit Study
  • Chemistry Unit Study
  • Insect Unit Study
  • Butterfly Unit Study
  • Inventions Unit Study
  • Horses Unit Study
  • Underwater Sea Creatures Unit Study
  • Aquarium Field Trip
  • Plants Unit Study
  • Classification of Animals
  • Rocks and Minerals Unit Study
  • Caves and Mines Unit Study
  • Simple Machines Unit Study
  • Weather Unit Study
  • Swiss Family Robinson Unit Study
  • Peter Pan Unit Study
  • Homer Price Unit Study
  • Beowulf Unit Study
  • Mystery Dinner
  • Map-Making
  • Neighborhood Map
  • Geocaching
  • Studying Your State
  • Luau Unit Study
  • Japan Unit Study
  • China Unit Study
  • India Unit Study
  • Mexico Unit Study
  • Australia Unit Study
  • Israel Unit Study
  • Bank Field Trip
  • Newspaper Field Trip
  • Circus Field Trip
  • Train Field Trip
  • Race Car Unit Study
  • Construction Unit Study
  • Around the World Unit Study
  • Learning to Draw
  • Pottery Unit Study
  • Wood Crafts Unit Study
  • Mosaics Unit Study
  • Mask-Making Unit Study
  • Paper Bag Puppets
  • Art Party
  • Nature Crafts
  • Feast of Tabernacles Unit Study
  • Ruth Unit Study
  • Make Your Own Bible Games
  • Ancient Egypt Unit Study
  • King Tut Mask
  • Egyptian Feast
  • Ancient Greece Unit Study
  • Greek Feast
  • Ancient Rome Unit Study
  • Middle Ages Unit Study
  • Medieval Feast
  • Cardboard Castles
  • Renaissance Fair
  • Vikings Unit Study
  • Cathedrals Unit Study
  • Renaissance Unit Study
  • Explorers Unit Study
  • American Revolution Unit Study
  • Native Americans Unit Study
  • Presidents Unit Study
  • Wild West Unit Study
  • Civil War Unit Study
  • Modern History Unit Study

Wouldn’t it be great to have access to all these unit studies instantly? Why not join the Unit Study Treasure Vault today?

Unit Studies for Homeschool

Friday, September 7th, 2012

unit-studies-for-homeschoolI’m on the edge of my seat, about to launch the biggest project I’ve ever done, which has grown way beyond what I imagined. It’s the fruition of 20 years’ worth of work, since I’ve been an educator for two decades. It’s a membership site where all my unit studies are in categories, with supporting materials beneath them, usually in the form of video demonstrations. It includes over 100 unit studies for homeschool. There are well over 1,000 supporting videos and articles, showing you how to homeschool your children with unit studies.

I’ve had people e-mailing me, asking for the book list for each of my unit study time periods. It took me many hours to track down all the books that I used, but these lists are now in my Unit Study Treasure Vault, followed by a list of activities in the order I did them while homeschooling my own children.

The science section has subject headings, and all the articles, videos, and field trips I did for each subject are under each heading. And I’ve added more high quality videos from the best of what the internet has to offer. I will be filming three exclusive demonstration videos found nowhere else on earth but in my Treasure Vault each month, plus I will continuously be adding to each category.

There’s a geography section, a literature section, an art section, a field trip section, and I will be adding more sections in the upcoming months. But each section is substantial and large already. That’s the crazy thing about it. And it will only be growing.

The Bible section is one of my favorite sections. Years ago I wrote Charlotte Mason style summaries for each book of the Bible, turning them in to my pastor for a class that took two years. My own father was a pastor and a missionary for 30 years (as well as a seminary professor), and he and my mother are helping me to edit the summaries and upload them to the Bible section of the Treasure Vault. Under each book of the Bible, I will be creating wonderful activities. This one section will eventually have hundreds of original hands-on learning activities. Even though I’m creating all these materials for homeschool moms, Sunday school teachers would also benefit from it. It might become so huge that it will need a whole separate Bible Treasure Vault. Who knows? The whole thing gives me so much joy, I can hardly contain it.

In fact, the whole idea for this Treasure Vault was birthed in joy. My husband had taken the kids swimming one evening, and I sat there in silence in the house, asking God what He wanted me to do with my business. I opened my heart to God and waited. Suddenly the idea for the Unit Study Treasure Vault came to me, and the individual ideas came like a waterfall, hundreds of ideas, and I had so much joy in the Spirit. I am exactly in the center of the will of God right now. In God’s presence is fullness of joy.

My husband is a computer programmer who happens to be my webmaster, so he has been writing computer code all summer long. I’m not kidding. He’s hardly been sleeping at all the last few weeks in preparation for this launch. My husband told me last night, “This is the biggest thing you’ve ever done, and you’re blogging about a hammock. We’re days from launching. I’m surprised you haven’t been getting e-mails saying, ‘What’s going on?’”

“Oh, I’m getting e-mails, and I’m answering each of them one by one. Those women are excited about the Vault and can’t wait.”

We have a couple of small glitches which are being worked out. We might launch tonight. Or Monday. The time is near…

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The Unit Study Treasure Vault is now open!!