4 reasons to take a summer break
There are some families who homeschool year round and take their breaks in a different way. This post isn't for them. It's for those who follow the traditional schedule of September to May/June.
1. Kids need time to be bored
Some parents feel that if they aren't doing school in the summer then the children will get bored. Yes, they WILL get bored- that's the point! Kids need these hours in order to foster their creativity. They can't think up things to do if we are always doing it for them. When they come and tell you they are bored, tell them, "Woohooo!! Finally! Yipeee! What are you going to do about it?"
I know other parents who offer a list of things to do or even suggest chores. Figure out what works for you, but let them come up with the solution.
2. It gives you time to research an plan for the fall
If you never take a break then it's easy to just keep going with the curriculum you are already using whether or not it is working. Often times homeschooling conventions take place in the summer or workshops and these help you to see other options for schooling. It's common for used curriculum fairs to take place as well, allowing you a chance to get discounted materials.
3. Children learn what they are interested in
Most of the time we, as parents, plan what the children are learning. The break allows them time to learn something they have been interested in. Maybe they are going to learn to swim, or fish, or to play tennis. They might be interested in the stars or gardening or in how to build a fort.
Our family is fortunate to be able to camp all summer. Our kids learned about the different wildlife we saw, learned to pitch a tent and build a fire. They learned to swim, ride a bike, and use a compass. They even learned to use a map!
4. You deserve a break!
Seriously, this homeschooling stuff takes energy and sometimes we just get worn out. Taking an extended break allows you time to read a book, organize a closet, or just sit and do nothing. You will find that after a few weeks you will be recharged and ready to take on the huge task of educating your children at home.
Things NOT to take a break from:
Reading to the kids
Everyone reading independently (don't assign this, just model it)
Testimonial: all of my 5 children had summer breaks and, would you believe, graduated from college knowing their math facts! Take a break!
You are a blessing to your children. Thanks for taking on the task of educating them!
Keep it up, your kids will thank you.