Top 5 Reasons I Love Unit Studies

I had never heard of unit studies before I started homeschooling. But, once I tried one, that was it. I was hooked! There was no turning back. We went from doing just one for fun here and there to making it the spine of our curriculum. What’s to love about unit studies? I’ll tell you…

1.They take the “boring” out of school and make learning more fun! In so doing, they have gotten my kids excited about learning! With unit studies, I have never heard them once say, “This is boring, Mom.” But, I have often rejoiced when they’ve exclaimed, “We love homeschooling!” To be honest, though, it’s not just about the kids. Unit studies have provided ME with a more enjoyable teaching tool that has made homeschooling so much more fun!

2.Unit studies have made my life easier because they allow me to connect different subjects to the main topic. With the exception of math, grammar, and spelling (though they too are often connected), I no longer have to keep up with multiple textbooks for each of my children. Instead, they learn about the same topic together, even though they’re six years apart!

While we were learning about Lewis & Clark, for instance, my kids were studying not only history, but science as well. They each replicated Meriwether Lewis’ journal, learned about various plants and animals, and recorded them in their journals just like Lewis had! They read living books about the expedition and biographies about the men (and woman) involved. Their writing assignments pertained to the study, as did arts & crafts and a host of other subjects. Even our family devotional focused on the character traits important to the expedition, as we discussed the importance of those traits in our lives, as well. Yep! Fewer textbooks have definitely made my life far less stressful.

3.Their creative hands-on approach has also helped us build precious family memories. My kids don’t remember the specific names of textbooks we’ve used, but they do remember the living books we’ve enjoyed together, the tee-pee painting party we invited friends to, the time they reenacted a battle from the Revolutionary War, and our chocolately-delicious pioneer soddie home (complete with Playmobile figures). Each of these memories also helped reinforce what they were learning.

4.I also love the fact that unit studies naturally accommodate different learning styles. That way, each of my children enjoys and excels using this method.

5.And, more importantly, because we are all learning together, we are building relationships and developing strong family bonds. Unit studies have allowed my boys to interact with each other and become the best of friends because they are learning together. Getting everyone’s noses out of the textbooks has given them the pleasure of “actively” learning and, in the process, has enabled us all to stop and smell the homeschool roses and rejoice in the journey we’re on.

(Both of my sons are now grown and college graduates. I taught them using unit studies as the spine of my curriculum all the way through high school. )

2 thoughts on “Top 5 Reasons I Love Unit Studies

  1. Linda says:

    I will start homeschooling my son in the fall. He is dyslexic. Do you have any experience in that area? I will be using a public charter because i need the resources. Do you typically use faith-base curriculum?

    • sharon@homeschoollegacy.com says:

      Hi Linda!

      How exciting. A homeschool journey is a delight, but it can also be challenging, especially with a a child who is learning disabled. But, not to worry. It is doable. It will just take you a little more time and require more patience on your part. But, that’s just fine! We’re not in a race. That’s the beauty of homeschooling. You can let your child lead you according to his individual ability. He will also display his strengths, so be sure to spend lots of time in the areas where he excels and give him much encouragement (in both his weaknesses and strengths) along the way.

      One of my sons was somewhat dyslexic. I found allowing him to choose his own “living books” from the library and offering him high interest living books, which pertained to our unit studies, helped him tremendously. But, it sounds like your son may be more dyslexic than mine, since you are needing the charter school’s resources. With that in mind, you will be reading aloud many books, which is great! You will also want to utilize a good assortment of audio books. This will be a great way to get classics and award-winning literature into him.

      Once-a-Week Unit Studies’ hands-on activities will also be highly beneficial to him in that they will provide him (and you) with a nice respite from books and offer him a fun alternative to reinforce what he is learning.

      Homeschool Successfully When Life Happens, which is in the Homeschool Helps Bundle being offered in this week’s Build Your Bundle Sale, would be a terrific resource for you. It addresses many issues, including dyslexia.

      Yes, I have always used faith-based curriculum and my Once-a-Week Unit Studies are as well.

      God’s best to you as you begin your adventure. Remember…while academics are important, they are not the most important thing. Relationships are.

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