There are many online resources, curriculum and programs available to homeschoolers. I won’t even pretend to know most of them, haha, but I do want to share how we use the internet in our homeschool. I want a healthy mix of hands-on and online learning for my son who is 14-years old. I think it’s important to learn how to balance both in today’s day and age.
Five years or so ago, we discovered an amazing distance education that we truly love. It is a perfect fit for our family. It’s through an LDS-based private school called, Liahona Preparatory Academy, and this is a big chunk of the way we homeschool.
We like Liahona because they film and stream their classes live, which is fun, but there is always the option to watch a previously-recorded class anytime, making this online learning quite flexible. It’s also personal because he can instant message and email his teachers, who have met him and our family. He is welcome to participate in many of the school’s activities such as youth conference, prom and super trips (we are going on a super trip at the end of May). Students may be unaccredited or accredited, God is fully included, there are no classes on Fridays, and assignments and tests are minimal (solely given on the subject matter taught).
This year, Marcus is taking three classes through Liahona: math (a combination geometry/algebra 2 class), earth science, and history.
English, music, art, more history and science- these are subjects we mesh and tackle together through hands-on learning, such as notebooking, unit studies, classics we read a-loud, poetry tea times, nature walks, fieldtrips, etc. We use online resources in conjunction with these activities, only as we need them or find them useful to complete the whole picture.
For example, right now we are in the middle of an early state history unit. As part of this unit, we are watching the history of the United States unfold through a wonderful BYUtv show called, American Ride. We started at season one and now we’re into season three. Marcus streams each episode for us on his Kindle, and we watch on our TV. After each show, we have a little discussion, and then we might pull out a book called, The American Story, by Jennifer Armstrong.
Then at the kitchen table, Marcus works on his state notebook. He creates two pages for each state. He sketches something representing the history of the state on one page, and writes a description underneath his picture. To help with this part, we use the state pages on history.com and ducksters.com. For Tennessee last week, Marcus sketched a guitar and wrote that Elvis was from Tennessee, which is considered the home of blues and country music. And then we used YouTube to listen to a few Elvis songs. We decided Burning Love is our favorite (maybe because of the movies, The Game Plan and Lilo & Stitch?)
I also found an excellent printable USA map from mrprintables.com.
This is our fabulous timeline. It was my daughter’s idea to use a poster board since we don’t have enough wall space.
♥ So that is how we use online learning in our homeschool. Thanks for reading! What is your favorite online resource or program in your homeschool? What is your favorite Elvis song? ♥