Planning Homeschool Lessons using School Subjects as a Framework
© Beverley Paine
A really popular way of home educating is using unit studies, or project-based learning. When I was a kid at school we simply called them projects. Here's an example of one my kids did many years ago. The plan was mine, cobbled together halfway through the project, after interest had been sparked in the topic following a conversation with the children's grandfather. While staying with us he had told them about watching Spitfires and Messerschmitts battling it out in the sky overhead as a young lad.
I used traditional school subjects as an outline as it is the way we usually think about education when starting out on the homeschool path. It is a very easy way to plan.
You can do this with any topic or theme. Underneath traditional school subject headings, list all the possible activities related to the theme or topic you can think of - in effect, brainstorm using the subject headings as a guide. As well as mathematics, science and English, remember health, personal development, physical education, music, visual arts, performance arts, other languages, technology studies, media studies, geography, history, study of other cultures, etc.
AEROPLANES June 1996
English: Research and reading magazines and books for information about specific topics to do with aeroplanes; recording and presenting information as a project; creative writing; writing letters.
LOTE: Indonesian Learning phrases useful for air travel.
Mathematics: Working out air speeds- comparisons to other transport vehicles; calculating quantities of materials needed for models; comparison of sizes of aeroplanes; reasons for shapes; working out how long to get to different destinations and times of arrival.
Science: Aerodynamic experiments. Simple paper plane and helicopter experiments. Making hot air balloons.
Technology: Designing and drawing plans for balsa wood and paper models. Following instructions to build commercial model. Looking at how propellers and wings work and designing and building working models. Radio controlled aeroplanes.
Humanities and Social Sciences: Different uses of aeroplanes - transport, military, medical, space shuttle, sport... Geography: Air travel routes; which countries build planes and why. History: The development of aeroplanes and other air vehicles.
Health & Safety: How do they keep people safe in the air, emergencies, accident prevention and investigations, occupations.
Art and Crafts: Painting and drawing planes, illustrating project, finishing models.
Drama: Playing aeroplanes, both role playing game and using miniature toys (matchbox planes, Lego, models).
Physical: Model aeroplane flying.
Music: Using the synthesizer on the computer to simulate aeroplane noises (and crashes!), researching songs about planes, maybe learning to play a tune, or sing.
You can also list your objectives, resources and evaluation indicators on your plan. Highlight the learning in skills and understandings for each curriculum area, in addition to knowledge. And outline of a learning plan can be developed for any topic.
And remember, go with the flow. The children may or may not be interested to follow through all the ideas you originally brainstorm. You may find they steer off course for a while or completely. Record what they covered and move on to the next area of interest. A project like this can last a day, a week or a month, for a child passionate about the topic, several years!
If you are writing a learning plan for a whole year, simply select up to a dozen different topics that are likely to be of high interest to your children. Add a few that are important to you. It is easy to cover learning across the whole curriculum with this approach to learning.
Was this article helpful? Was it worth $1.00 to you?
Your gift of $1 or more helps to keep this site operating
and reassurance to families
better outcomes for their children.
Beverley Paine with her children, and their home educated children, relaxing at home.
Together with the support of my family, my aim is to help parents educate their children in stress-free, nurturing environments. In addition to building and maintaing this website, I continue to create and manage local and national home educating networks, help to organise conferences and camps, as well as write for, edit and produce newsletters, resource directories and magazines. I am an active supporter of national, state, regional and local home education groups.
"You've been an inspiration to me, I love the way
you really listen to people." Vanessa
"Whenever I read your writing I always come away
with increased confidence in my ability to provide and
share a wonderful learning journey with my family!" Davina
"Your guidance, understanding, support and words of
wisdom changed our lives. We now offer support and
organise many homeschooling events for others." Lesley
"Thank you once again for your prompt and friendly service.
I am convinced that your books are going to add
quality and peace of mind to my journey of teaching my kids
at home! Just from studying your website, until almost
in the morning, I 've been encouraged!" Louisa
"Thank you for all your many,many reassuring words
over many, many years. You probably don't know exactly how
valuable you are to the Australian Home Education community.
I've been reading your stuff for maybe 8 years or more now.
And I'm very grateful." Gythaa
Want to learn how to write your own education plans to suit
your unique children's
individual learning needs?
Looking for quality curriculum and teaching tips ?
Over 1000 reassuring and
informative articles to help
build your confidence as an Educating Parent
Welcome to the World of Home Education
and Learning without School!
We began educating our children in 1985, when our eldest was five. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn since they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. We hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was! Beverley Paine
The information on this website is of a general nature only and is not intended as personal or professional advice. This site merges and incorporates 'Homeschool Australia' and 'Unschool Australia'.
The Educating Parent acknowledges the Traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Owners, the Custodians of Australia, and pay our respects to Elders past and present and extend that respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people viewing this website.
Over 30 presentations!
For $29 you get
lifetime access to recordings
of all the workshops, all associated resource guides, dDownload all video and mp3 files
Amazing homeschooling help!
ESSENTIAL STEP BY STEP GUIDES
Let experienced home educators Beverley, Tamara and April walk you through HOW to create a learning plan that builds on solid foundations that works for YOUR family AND ticks all the boxes for home educaton registration!
"Your guidance, understanding, support & words of wisdom changed our lives." Leslie
"I feel specially inspired by Beverley's words and, the more I read her comments, the more inspired I feel, since
my need for support, respect for different parenting styles, and information are fully met." Marijo
Home education is a legal alternative
to school education in Australia.
State and Territory governments are responsible
for regulating home education and have different
requirements, however home educating families
are able to develop curriculum and learning programs
to suit the individual needs of their children.
Without revenue from advertising
by educational suppliers and Google Ads
we could not continue to provide information
to home educators. Please support us by letting
our advertisers know that you found them on
The Educating Parent. Thanks!