Ideas and Activities for Homeschooling in North Conway, NH
Lots of folks in New Hampshire do online homeschooling.
I am going to get creative and show you examples of how you can make homeschooling fun and engaging without doing all of the subjects online. Trust me, homeschooling is much more successful if you do lots of crafts, experiments, exploring and group activities!
Four Seasons Lodge is offering discounted midweek dates for small homeschooling groups that want to shake things up a bit. Enjoy our heated INDOOR pool and 10 bedrooms!
Here is our 3 day break down for each grade while homeschooling in North Conway, NH on vacation.
I know that most of you are doing online homeschooling in NH but I think hands on is better for many subjects.
I realize that this experience with remote learning is new to a lot of families, but I am a veteran. I'm here to help you use the vast list of things to do in North Conway to keep your kids learning and engaged.
Times are strange, and school may be stranger. With every state doing its own thing between homeschooling, online schooling, and with one week in person and one week remotely, we all need to be open to a little bit of innovation!
As a mom who homeschooled her son for his entire grade school career, I have tried many methods and tactics. Once we found something that worked, we stuck with it! Everyone learns differently and that's why there are so many ways to homeschool.
Between reading, testing, visual learning, physical learning, and the handful of kids that actually thrive within the school system we are left with a lot of options.
The key to homeschooling success is to learn how your kid learns. Once you do that you just have to put their learning style into practice.
Now, I've found that the best teacher is action. Something you can see, touch and do will leave a longer lasting impression than something you just read in a book or be told in a class.
Here are some ideas on how to homeschool while you're on vacation. I'm going to break everything down into a 3-day lesson plan for elementary, middle and high schoolers so that you can still learn while on vacation.
Language Arts is a subject that is easy to create games with.
One the first day of homeschooling, head outside with a large blanket and some notebooks and have everyone lay down and close their eyes. Have the kids listen to their surroundings and then write down what they hear.
This activity is great for using their auditory skills plus learning to use adjectives!
Now, it's the second day. We're going to use their descriptions from day one and write a short story about it. Whether it's about nature, people, airplanes or dogs–there are no wrong answers.
As day 3 rolls around find a short storybook that has to do with the outdoors. Pick some items from the book that the kids can find and bring to you, or you can follow them (like...if it's a tree or something).
It's a great way for the kids to get active and to work on their word associations. You can also have them spell the things they find (without looking at the book)!
Social Studies can be tough to make fun, but it's not impossible! Go out and buy some outdoor chalk and head out to the driveway.
Have them draw the United States (or you can) and then have them name all 50 states!
Actually, my favorite was playing a card game called "5 State Rummy". My son and I played it so often that we wore out the cards.
On day 2, if it hasn't rained, go a little further with your map of the United States. It's time to add state capitals, or maybe even their governors!
Once you're onto day 3, get out that chalk one more time - because we're going to travel beyond the United States and have them name all of the continents.
You can have them draw it, or you can draw the outline and have them color in each continent. You can include your map of the US as well!
Science is my favorite subject, and it's outrageously easy to make fun. Put on your hiking shoes, grab some crayons, paper and a clipboard and go leaf hunting.
Have the kids pick up leaves and make etchings by putting the leaf on a clip board, a piece of paper over the leaf, and rubbing the side of the crayon on the paper which will create an imprint of the leaf. Have the kids identify which type of tree the leaf came from, or maybe have them find the tree!
Once they've done that make sure they write down what type of tree the leaf belongs to. You can even add an extra challenge to see if they can find any animal prints.
Just be sure to avoid poison oak and poison ivy! That's a lot less fun...
On day 2 set up a small motion censored camera and see if you can catch any photos of wildlife. You can have the kids write a short explanation on what they think they'll find based on what types of animals live in the area.
Once day 3 arrives have them look through the photos and see what they've captured. They can then draw the animals and write a short description of the animal and its habitat. Who knows? Maybe you'll see a mouse or the ever elusive bobcat?!
Math, surprisingly, has a lot of great activities that will get the kids moving. Since it's still going to be warm out for a spell try out the math water balloon game!
Grab some paper, with some plastic covering (or laminate them), balloons, a sharpie and some water and you're ready to go! All you have to do is pick numbers to put on the paper as targets. Write equations on the balloons that equals the target numbers and get ready to toss them around!
The goal is to throw the balloons at the correct answers (or targets).
Once you're ready to move onto day 2, grab your marshmallow shooter. If you don't have one, or access to a Bed, Bath and Beyond then make one! They're super easy to make. Once you have a shooter and a bag full of marshmallow ammo then you're ready to go.
Have the kids shoot the marshmallows and then use a measuring tape to determine how far they got. The one who gets a marshmallow to go the furthest distance wins a prize!
Now that it's day 3 it's time to get serious–with bugs. Have the little ones help you in the garden and tell them to count all of the bugs they can find. It's a great way for them to use their memory and they might help you dig a hole or two!
English, like I mentioned earlier, is an easy subject to make fun. Let's start off the week with an easy one!
Make a word wheel. You can add things like draw it, act it out, say a synonym, rhyme it, use it in a sentence, define it, and/or name the part of speech. Make it as easy or as hard as you want.
On day 2 move onto a build a story scavenger hunt. This activity can be done outdoors or indoors. Scatter little pieces of paper around the area with random nouns, verbs and adjectives.
Have the kids find 3 words from each category and then have them write a story using those words.
As day 3 hits it's time to get out the Play-Doh for some Play-Doh Pictionary! It's a great way to utilize practicing nouns, verbs and adjectives.
Social Studies provides us with so many subjects that it can be hard to choose an activity. For the first day we're going to start with sports.
Just using the nickname for the sports team (for instance: Dolphins, Patriots, Yankees, etc.) have the kids guess which city those teams are from and then have them locate the city on a map.
On day 2, add an extra challenge and have them figure out the significance between the teams name and the town. Make sure they back up their theories!
They should research geographical, historical and cultural information.
Now that we're on day 3, it's time to draw a map. Pick a spot you frequently visit, like school, the playground or even grandma's house!
Have them draw/color a proper map from that location to home. Make sure they include a key and a compass!
Science is always super easy to make active. Let's start day 1 with a balloon test.
Fill a plastic water bottle with vinegar, and a deflated balloon with baking soda. Place the balloon on the top of the bottle and then shake the baking soda down to the vinegar.
Now you can watch the balloon inflate "all on its own!"
This experiment demonstrates the difference between acids and bases.
Move onto density on day 2. In one glass, layer different types of liquids like honey, dish soap, water, rubbing alcohol, and cooking oil and watch them not mix together.
Day 3 is a great day to use one more water bottle and some more cool substances. Make your own lava lamp! They're super easy to make and super fun!
All you need is Alka Seltzer, a water bottle with a cap, vegetable oil, water and food coloring.
Math and Algebra 1 can be tough to make fun and different, but the most important thing to focus on is getting off the computer. One of the best tools for learning math is to create different games.
On day 1 you get to be a little creative. Make some cards that match the Taboo card game, but make sure they're all math related.
Follow the basic rules for Taboo but keep them guessing mathematical terms.
Moving onto game day 2, you get to create the same type of exercise but with Scattergories. Make the list items as simple or as difficult as you want. You can print math lists off the internet or make your own!
There's even an online Scattergories die that you can use.
Now that you're on day 3 it's time to get serious again... with having the kids invent their own games! Whatever your last lesson was on, have them team up or fly solo, and create games that utilize the math from that lesson.
You can make one too. That way everyone has different games to play and there's no better way to learn than to teach others. Once they make the game they'll have to teach everyone how to play!
English can be really fun for high schoolers!
The trick is to make the activities hard enough that they stay enthusiastic. If you have more than one kid, try this Jeopardy style game called the Unfair Game.
Set up a point system, questions and numbers. The only different from Jeopardy is that they know if the points are going their own team or the others if they get it right. Only the teacher knows!
Once you've worn them out on day 1, have them each direct a scene from a Shakespeare play. The best way to grasp the Bards complex language is to act it out!
Give them options of different scenes and they have to be each others actors. If you are only homeschooling one kid, then it's time to brush up your Shakespeare!
Shakespeare is quite the project so on day 3 give them something a little easier with the game Codenames. You can play online, with the physical game or you can make it yourself.
It's a great game that can be quite difficult, even for adults! So get the whole family in on it.
History can be one of the most boring subjects to learn as it's mostly reading and memorizing dates. However, if you're homeschooling you have tons of resources at your fingertips.
The most important thing is to make it interactive. On day one, head into the kitchen.
You can find ancient and old style recipes all over the internet. First, I highly recommend that every one watches "Cooked" on Netflix.
It's an amazing documentary that really breaks down the traditions of food from different cultures and how those lessons are passed down through family members for generations! You can start with cooking a dish from your own heritage, and discuss the historical and cultural significance of that dish.
You might not realize it but culture, agriculture and time really do impact food. You can go even older and try to make some ancient bread which requires extreme patience and concentration.
Once you're all full and happy we're onto day 2! If you have an old game set of Guess Who sitting around well now is your chance to make it even harder!
Write the names (or print pictures) of famous people from history and put them in all of the slots. The kids have to ask a series of questions to cancel out who you re not. It's a great way to exercise their memory on different figures throughout history.
Homeschooling history can be done outdoors too!
Head outside and look for old cemeteries, historical sites, historical museums, boundary walls in New England and much more. Research some of the names from the cemeteries and museums.
It's all much easier to grasp when you see the headstones and plaques on historical houses. It'll impact their brains so much more than if they just read them out of a book.
Day 3 is another day you can head outside. I don't know if you know this but the Pilgrims landed in New England. We have an abundance of dark, but interesting history throughout the north east.
North Conway has many historic sites around town, including old buildings, bridges and monuments. However, I am going to recommend the Flume Gorge.
It's packed with history and is truly beautiful. There is no better way to learn about history than to go walk around in it!
Math can be tricky to make fun for high schoolers. Now, we're going to make them feel real ol' fashioned with math Bingo! You can make it as easy or as hard as you want.
It's fun, easy and you can give them a prize at the end.
Once the second day rolls around it's time to talk about movies. Try this Box Office Problem. The breakdown is a little long, so just click the link and set it up!
Now that day 3 has finally arrived, try this print out game called What's the Factor. It's another one with a more complex description but it'll get their brains moving with factoring equations.
Science, is last but not least. We're going to start with another spin on a classic game and play Battle Ship - based off the Periodic Table of Elements.
It's pretty easy to set up. Just print out 4 sets of the periodic table and set it up like Battleship (if you have the game you can use the boxes and the ships)! They call out coordinates: atomic numbers, atomic symbols, or element names, to try and sink their opponents ships.
On day 2 it's time to give the true crime enthusiasts their day! And, if you don't think there are true crime enthusiasts in high school than you're lying to yourself! Maybe one of your kids wants to be a forensic pathologist – they might not know! Use the PDF It's Forensics in Chemistry as a guide and have them solve the murder.
On the last day, do this fun activity that has to do with esters and organic synthesis. It's a complex system that requires a sense of smell and some serious brain power.
Congratulations! You Made It!
You're teaching your homeschooler in new and exciting ways that will keep them engaged and enthralled with learning.
Now, let them refresh their minds and souls and enjoy North Conway. Utilize our beautiful natural surroundings, historic sites, animals and refreshing pool to take a break from all the hard word (and get some P.E. in... hehe).
Four Seasons Lodge is a terrific lodge to host a homeschooling gathering.
When I homeschooled my son it was so helpful to have a group to do an experiment, dissect a frog, or whatever, with.
We all, even the kids, have so much knowledge to share with each other! I watched as older kids would help out the young'uns and times when the young whipper snappers helped out the high school kids!
Four seasons Lodge has Zoom-able WiFi and the gym is right here in the house. I Bet you won't have to "do" game for a week with all the swimming they will do.
Have fun - don't stress, and just do the best you can do. No one can teach them everything. I always strived to allow my son to find the answers rather than give them to him. I believe finding the answers is a very valuable life skill!
Four Seasons Lodge
31 Whiskiers Lane
North Conway, NH 03860
(603) 662 - 5391