One of the benefits of homeschooling is that the learning never ends. Even when "summer break" is here, learning still happens. In fact, this year we will be starting a "year round" type of school routine. Now, I should share that we have always done this, but I've not been proactive about it. School typically went well in to the summer simply because we are very relaxed here and took a lot of days off throughout the year. It would take us until the end of July or August simply to meet the number of days we need for our school year.
However, this year I was a bit more disciplined in getting our school days in. In fact, for the first time in a while, we will be "done" with school this week. It's a week after the public schools have ended and the earliest by at least a month that we've been done.
As a result, I do not want the boys to take off the next three months for a couple of reasons. One, we have some skills that need to be honed and brushed up on. If we take off the next few months, we'll miss that opportunity. I also don't want them to forget anything they learned over the last year. We'll continue with "light school" through the summer in order to accomplish all I would like. Lastly, the Schoolhouse Review Crew has changed up the year. Typically we took off some of the summer. However, the new year will run from January to November. As a result, we have a some "gap time" that's being filled and I still have lots of review products coming in. We need to keep our school routine so we can review these great items.
But that doesn't mean we'll be hitting the books day in and day out with no time for fun! After all, we live in the northeast and winters are tough. We rarely go far and it's hard to plan for anything not knowing what the weather will be. That means before the cold winter weather hits, we go on lots of field trips. It also means we take full advantage of the summer months as well.
In fact, since last August we have gone on 17 field trips and I have a couple more really great ones planned for this summer. We're going to have a very busy July & August and I can't wait!
At the end of July we'll be heading to Massachusetts to visit with a friend. I'll be hitting up a used curriculum sale while there (that's my idea of a great vacation!). Then I'll head over to my aunt's house. She lives near the ocean so I'm hoping we get some beach time in. My brother will be here from California for a visit and some of our cousins will be there as well.
We're all taking a day to go in to Boston to walk The Freedom Trail. I've wanted to do that with my boys for awhile. Now that they are all older, it should be a bit easier to accomplish. We've also started working on American History so this will all tie in nicely.
Later in August we have the opportunity to visit with a friend in Pennsylvania. We'll be staying right outside of Philadelphia so the plans are shaping up to take in some of the educational opportunities of being near a big city.
One day will definitely be spent at the zoo. We have never, ever, ever been to a large zoo of any kind anywhere. I think I'm looking forward to this even a bit more than the kids! Another day will be spent checking out things in the city like the Liberty Bell and the Franklin Institute. We're still finalizing plans, but we'll essentially being doing three days straight of field trips and calling it vacation. I love it.
And we are planning a trip to Washington, D.C. for next year. I can't wait for that one!
Curious as to other great ways to spend your summer and get some field trip ideas? The Schoolhouse Review Crew will be sharing their ideas on the Blog Cruise that will go live on Tuesday, the 19th. Be sure to stop over and check out all the other ideas.