Imparting information and seeing your child grasp it is one thing, but that knowledge will only take root when the information the child has learned is applied. Application is key. You can teach your child all day long about the mechanics of riding a bicycle, but until your child gets on the bike and rides it by himself, he will not completely understand what it means to ride a bike.
So how can you take classroom learning and successfully apply it to real life situations? By watching for everyday opportunities to link learning to life.
Turn everyday life experiences into practical teaching opportunities that your children will enjoy.
After teaching about rocks, take your children outdoors to look for rocks. You can do this as you work through the curriculum, but remember that everywhere you take your children, there’s an opportunity to review what you all learned about rocks in the classroom. The lake, a stream, the street, a playground: these are all places where rocks are found.
Take the time to collect a few rocks from each place, label them, and back in “the lab” (home or classroom), compare and contrast the rocks. How are the features of the rocks taken from the lake or a stream different from those collected from the street or road and playground? And don’t merely guess; refer to previously taught materials when making assertions.
Marilyn Buehrer was a public-school English teacher in Washington, California, and Arizona, a national motivational speaker and educator to home schoolers for nearly a decade, as well as a workshop speaker at home school conventions nationwide and at public middle school consortia in Arizona. She is the developer of Lyric Power Publishing’s comprehensive Workbooks and Activity Sheets.