This year in our homeschool, we are dedicating Fridays to ‘fun learning’. We have tried to have Fun Friday in the past, but it never worked out. I finally figured out why and came up with a plan for this year!
In the past, I stuck with a rule (that I made up) that before we could start Fun Friday, everyone had to be caught up with their work for the week. Well…you can probably guess what happened there. We would end up catching up on undone work Friday morning and run out of time for our fun learning resources.
So my new rule this year, is that if we are behind on our work at the end of the day Thursday there are two options. If it was because I scheduled too much, then the work will just get pushed to the next week. If a child is behind on his work because he has been procrastinating, then he will have to make-up the work on his own time. Regardless, Fun Friday will not be affected by missing work!
So now that we got that figured out, here are the fun homeschool resources we will be using…
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Countries of the World Unit Studies
This summer we shared with our readers eleven different Country Unit Studies! Well, we only got through a few of them ourselves so we are going to be using them this school year to visit one continent a month! We will incorporate some of the books into our ‘academic’ reading, but will use Fridays to watch videos, make hands on projects, and cook food from each of the countries. First up, will be Africa with DR Congo and Egypt. And my youngest will be reading one of our favorite books, A Long Walk to Water, which is set in Sudan.
Timely Topic Unit Studies
We will also use Fridays to dive deeper into timely topics. This might be something fun like Roald Dahl day (Sept. 13th) or Monarch migration (fall). Or something that is more academic like the election. (Hopefully, this won’t break our Fun Friday rule too much! 🙂 ) I have purchased What Was the Declaration of Independence? and What Is the Constitution? for this fall and will plan more as we go.
Musicals and Other Movies
As part of our Music In Our Homeschool Plus Membership, we have access to their Intro to Musicals for Elementary Students. First, we will spend some time learning What is a Musical? Then, we will choose one musical a month from the 10 different musicals included. First, up is James and the Giant Peach, The Musical, which we will compare with the movie.
Fridays will also be a good day (or night) to watch movies related to our other studies such as our Country Unit Studies or books we are reading. It is always interesting to compare books to the movie. Not to mention, it builds good analytical skills!
More James and the Giant Peach ideas:
Fun, Educational Games
We own so many games in our home, but often by the time we are done schooling and I am done working for the day, I don’t have much desire to play them. So we are going to play at least one game every Friday. during school time. I just ordered this new game that works on math skills and will help us understand our election process better:
Arts and Crafts
Art is the subject that falls off our schedule every year…sigh. So we will plan on working some art projects into our Fun Fridays. Some will be part of our unit studies.
When we don’t have a project related to a unit study to do, we will probably fall back on our lazy approach to art. Get out our drawing books and colored pencils, and watch some Art for Kids Hub drawing videos!
Cooking and Other Life Skills
We occasionally cook together as a family, but honestly I often want the kitchen to myself! 🙂 But, both my boys enjoy it and want to learn more so we are going to create time on Fridays in the kitchen. Some days we may cook food to go with one of our Country Unit Studies. Or we may pick a recipe out of The Complete Cookbook for Young Chefs from America’s Test Kitchen that we bought them for Christmas.
If you want to cook with your kids more, but your eye gets twitchy, check out Eight Stress-Reducing Tips for Cooking with Kids. And here are skills children learn when cooking! Following directions in going to be our area of focus this year!
We will also work in some gardening and other life skills on Fridays, I am sure.
Learning Computer Apps
This one I just threw in at the end when I came across a list of 25 FREE Apps that students can use to create projects. My plan is to play around with some in a fun way on a Fun Friday. Then, the boys could use their new knowledge to create a more academic project with the app during the week, if appropriate. Techie Homeschool Mom has a course for parents on how to use digital projects with our children that I may take to help me with this plan.
What other activities would you included in Fun Friday?