Integrate Your Kids’ Passions with Homeschool {Giveaway}

If you haven’t noticed, it’s Super Bowl week.Β  Our family loves football, so I always tried to integrate that passion in their homeschool.Β  Over the next several days I’ll share some activities we did during Super Bowl week.

super-bowl-activities-football-kids-passionsMaybe your family doesn’t like sports…

What are your kids’ passions?

How are you integrating those passions in your homeschool?

Post a comment & you’ll be entered to win our ebook, Keeping Kids Busy:Β  Activities, Crafts & Treats for Kids.

I’ll be choosing 5 random winners after the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb 3, so post your comment before Sunday night.

If you love sports like our family, share a way you integrate sports into your homeschool.

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  1. My 5 year old twins LOVE anything to do with the sky. Stars, planets, the moon, the sun, airplanes, clouds, etc. We use that to talk about tons of subjects. Creation, technology, astrology, art, imagination, etc. You can count them, spell them, sort them, sing about them, describe them, etc. etc. Thanks for the encouragement and GOD’S BLESSINGS on your new website.

    1. Deb,
      I remember doing some unit studies on astronomy when my kids were younger. We read books, did projects & wrote about what we learned. Fun topic.

  2. We’re not really a sports-y family, although we’ll watch the Super Bowl, so I haven’t tied anything school-wise into the game on Sunday. When my kids show an interest in something, usually, we get library books and read, read, read. Our co-op is studying American History this year (and so are we and loving it), but my daughter has shown a passion for Ancient Egypt…so we are diving into that and reading all kinds of books on that too.

    Every once in a while, I may come up with a little game, activity or at the least a coloring page (which is their favorite for some reason) and we’ll do that, but mostly we just read books together!

    1. Lindsay,
      I know not everyone is into sports. Thanks for sharing about Egypt. When I started homeschooling, we did not have as many resources as today. I’m sure you can find some fun coloring pages on any topic these days. Thanks for sharing.

  3. All 4 of my children have different passions and sometimes it’s challenging to get the needed stuff in with passion stuff, however, I feel the kids will learn if they have a passion, so Friday is just for passion. We welcome in those activities as often as possible through the week by encouraging the kids to do them whenever they have a free minute, but Fridays we try to leave open for them to plan their day with the things that thrill them to learn. Painting, making jewelry, reading, legos, etc.

    1. I love the idea of a 4 day school week, leaving Friday for a variety of activities. Some years we had co-op on Friday and others I tried to plan fun educational activities. Thanks for the reminder, Dolly.

  4. We are not big sports fans, but we are stepping out and hosting our Sunday school class’ Super Bowl fellowship. We love the Lord and enjoy getting together with friends.

    Our children’s passions and how we integrate them into our homeschool:

    Teenaged child loves computers—teaching himself a computer programing language. He just did it on his own. He’s constantly learning about computers!

    Youngest child loves dolphins—since she was 4 years old, she said she wants to be a whale trainer at Seaworld. We use the library and bring home lots of books about the ocean and sea creatures. We get other topics too, things like Magic School Bus and Berenstain Bears books. She just read her 200th book for this current school year today!

    We use an electic mix of things, but reading is tops!

    1. Beverly,
      Thanks for sharing. I loved dolphins growing up. My kids loved Magic School Bus…in fact they came to Texas A&M when our kids were younger. We loved going to their show. I think eclectic ROCKS!

  5. My DD 11 always wants to come up with new ways to start a business and make money. I am not the entrepreneur but, my husband is. So they are always working on different projects and come up with ideas for a new business. Personally I am totally clueless, so I guess I am learning along with my dd.

    1. Nancy,
      When my son was about 11yo, he wanted to have a dog business. So, my hubby had him make a list of at least 10 businesses he could do with dogs. Although he never did those businesses, it was a great activity. Instead, he started making/selling marshmallow guns. He even wrote a book about his business that will probably go on sale this semester.

  6. Thanks for th giveaway ! Ok, my girls are into dance now, well Ballet to be specific. From books to movies to dolls to dress up, lots of ballet here! Even choreography and video making ! So I decided to add Art into it and introduce the grat artist Degas to their list of must know painters, read books (directed to their age level) about him and his era, study his paintings ( wich all include ballerinas) and his medium, add classical music used to perform and their composers, and let them try on a painting of their own (self-portrait or copying Degas’ work), choosing a composer number for their own little recital. I think this is worth stopping our regular Art curriculum to do this instead for a little bit. πŸ™‚

    1. Love the integration of dance & Degas. Have you read Ballet Shoes? I discovered this book when my girls were older, but it sounds like a great integration of ballet & reading. Just a thought.

  7. My kids probably don’t even know what football is. We don’t watch it because we are too busy. They love to play play play!

    1. That is so great. Kids should be outside playing. My son has always loved balls, so he played with footballs, basketballs, soccer balls, baseballs, nerf balls (& guns), plastic balls. I’m serious…he loves balls. I remember reading his history lesson aloud when he was 11-12yo. He was throwing a ball in the air & catching it in his glove. Guess that helped him pay attention πŸ™‚

  8. My daughter loves animals, big and small. I have gone on Youtube to find silly animal videos for her to watch then she has made a list of action verbs that come to mind. She has written stories about animals using her vocabulary/spelling words and literary tools we are learning (i.e. simile, metaphor, alliteration). My youngest son LOVES spiders and anything Spiderman. We have used Spiderman comics to make a list of onomatopoeias and action verbs. We used his Spiderman suit as the subject in an alliteration activity and we have read so many informative books on spiders, he actually identified an immature black widow (hourglass on abdomen had not developed yet) while visiting at a friends home, he was only four at the time. Thanks for an opportunity to share!

    1. Stephanie,
      Great ideas. When my son was young, he loved the jungle. He wrote an ABC book called ABC Jungle Book. Each letter represented an animal in the jungle. It took him about 1 year…26 paragraphs at the age of 8-9yo. It was a great way to integrate animals, reading, art, writing, research.

  9. My daughter is interested in jewelry making so we now have a “class” called Entrepreneurship and she’ll be learning about business as she sells her own creations!

  10. With 8 children we have too many passions to list here and I would love to do a little more pursuit of them. I have visions of reading books under trees and chasing butterflies and visiting science museums with my dear “students” all day but our principal (Daddy!) prefers a more structured curriculum (And he’s right, it’s probably more practical for our family right now) so we stay pretty traditional with reading, writing and ‘rithmatic during the weekdays then pursue passions with “field trips” on weekends. πŸ™‚

    1. Kerrie,
      Sounds like a plan to me, especially if both mom & dad are happy. I remember taking a picture one day 9 (about 15 yrs ago) when my kids were sitting in front of the fire, reading. It was something I always imagined, but never did. Thought I should grab a photo quickly so I could remember that time. Field trips are also wonderful. I think we should have a field trip Blog Candy Contest this year :-).

  11. My son LOVES plants, flowers, insects, trees…God’s Creation, in general! πŸ™‚ We integrate this into our school by letting him pick out lots and lots of library books on his interests. Right now he has about 5 gardening books checked out from the library, a caterpillar habitat that will soon flourish with butterflies, after he is done with lessons for the day I allow him to plant/transplant flowers and plants. We also have “cutlets” off of vine plants in a jar with water and we are experimenting with propagatioin of these types of plants. All of this at only 6 years old! πŸ˜‰ In a nutshell, we learn, learn, learn all about what interests him! And we try to take many fieldtrips, even if it’s as simple as going to the neighborhood nursery to check out what plants and trees they are selling.

    1. Shannon,
      With spring around the corner, this is so appropriate. Thanks for sharing. I agree…learn about what interests him. One year, my son did all his writing assignments about Derek Jeter (NY Yankees) because he was interested in him. He learned topic sentence, clinchers, and ways to dress up his paragraph…and had a better essay because he was INTERESTED.

  12. My son loves video games (he even tries reading guidebooks as his independent reading). So I found a lesson-based program that teaches basic programming. When he is completely finished with his daily work, he learns how to program basic games. The ironic thing is he went from being forced to sit for more than 10 minutes, to sitting for hours try to finish a whole week’s worth of work into a few days, so, he can spend the remainder of his week learning how to program!

    1. What a cool testimony! Just goes to show how much more we learn when we are interested in the topic. Thanks for sharing

  13. My daughters love art…..One way that I have included their passion for drawing is I bought them each a “story” notebook, the top part of the page is blank and the bottom part lined for writing. I read them a Proverb of the day in the morning and as I am reading it they privately choose a verse to portray in a picture. They draw a picture and then color it, usually giggling with joy the entire time. When they are finished drawing they show each other and me their picture and I re-read the Proverb. We try to guess which Proverb they drew. After we guess it, they write the verse, neatly, at the bottom of the page along with a sentence of what that verse means to them. We really enjoy their notebooks…..=o) I am so happy to reinforce time in God’s word this way.

  14. I have three boys. Two love to swim and one does not. I am not a swimmer myself, but I have supported the two who do by helping out during the swim meets by doing the concession stands for the last three years. The other son who does not like to swim, my husband and I have allowed him to just hang out. My son is okay with that. In the mean time, when he wants to try something, we let him. Some people think we should force him to stay with something, but we don’t push. Everybody is happy.

    1. Pamela,
      It is so interesting to see the different passions of each child. I agree that kids should try different things as they are growing up. When our kids chose to try an activity, they had to complete it for the time period chosen. After that, they could switch to something els.

  15. My boys all love nerf, so we have developed nerf games to respresent WWI battles. They get to play nerf, relive the battle and learn at the same time.

    1. Oh my! Every family with boys should read this. My son loved nerf guns, as well as paint ball guns. They would spend hours in battle. I wish I had thought to tie it together with a historical battle.

  16. My dd (almost 7) loves to work with her hands and create. I often have her draw a picture of a part of a story that we are reading so she can create and I know she is paying attention on some level.

    1. I had a child who needed to be doing something with his hands to listen to our read aloud time. I completely understand.

  17. I have 2 sons. My oldest’s (8) passion is many things. He loves being outside, trying to understand God and Legos. My youngest’s (4) passion is terrorizing his older brother and growing his hair long like all the Jesus pictures in the house.

  18. My children love soccer. They also love any kind of art project. Thanks for the giveaway! I would love to win. I had a question also about the Valentine promotion. I’m getting the emails, but never rec’d the free book for signing up. I have been having trouble with my yahoo account. I was wondering if you could resend it to me? Thanks so much!

    1. Michele,
      I will ask my assistant to send it again to your address on this comment. Let me know if you still don’t receive it.

  19. My daughter (8) loves Little House on the Prairie, so this year is the “Prairie Year”. We are (re-)reading the books and have been blessed to move near Living History Farms where we can see “Laura’s” life in action.

    My son (4) I think has gained a passion from our reading toward the end of last year. Since “Paddle to the Sea” he has been building sawmills with legos. They seem to keep getting more elaborate!

    1. Jacqueline,
      That brings back so many fond memories when my daughters loved Laura & Little House. I always wished we could visit some of the actual cities Laura lived, but never made it.
      This is so ironic. My son loved Paddle to The Sea….and the other Geography books from Beautiful Feet.

  20. My children all love birds, so we have put up a birdfeeder that my son and husband made. It has been great fun to learn how to keep squirrels away, discuss what kinds of seed to use to attract particular birds and attempt to identify the birds that visit the feeder.

    1. Birds are a great topic, especially if you have some in your yard. One year my son stayed with my parents for a week in May. There were 2 bird nests at that time. They watched the eggs, the babies & the flying the nest. What a cool experience.

  21. My daughter passions are animals and art. My sons is building. And yes we integrate those into our homeschool just about everyday. My daughter picks and animal of the month and we take time to study it in depth and also learn about the continent it lives on.

    1. Kathy,
      I love the idea of pick of the month. That allows you to integrate a different aspect of your child’s interest each month. Thanks for sharing.

  22. My boys like cross country skiing, so we have had 2 field trips going skiing, one was a lesson and the other just for fun exercise outdoors.

    1. When we lived in Idaho, I never thought about adding skiing to our homeschool. We had homeschool ski days on Friday, but I probably could have tied it altogether. I’ve never tried cross-country skiing, only downhill. I love it!

  23. My daughter loves all animals and especially enjoys rabbits. When she was about 12 she started breeding her rabbit. We had just bought a digital camera and when the baby rabbits were born, my daughter taught herself to use the camera and took pictures of their daily growth. She also journaled about their progress, using IEW ideas for her paragraphs. She put it all together for a science fair project and won a prize. She also later wrote a manual on rabbit care for people who bought her baby bunnies, again using what she had learned from IEW. All my other five children benefited from her passion for rabbits and one of my best homeschooling memories is sitting outside reading aloud while we each held a gorgeous baby bunny on our laps.

  24. We also did 4H w/ my son, therefore integrating Science in the care & handling of his pigs & horses, English & Literature in his essays & research & when it came to PE, he would head out, saddle up- whether it was helping his cousins round up the cattle or just a leisure ride- it qualified… Plus it made coming back to his other studies much more doable because he knew the opportunity to do it again was right out the door – now that we are getting ready to homeschool our grandson we will apply the numerous activities we enjoyed that offer non- conventional learning opportunities-

    1. I think you are so wise to have your son “saddle up” for PE. I completely agree that kids (especially boys) need a break outside. Sitting at a desk all day is hard enough for me. I’m sure it’s hard for kids too. Love your integration of 4H with Science, Literature, & English. I wish I had thought of that when my daughter was in 4H.

  25. My youngest son is an excellent artist and I found online art instruction and self-teaching videos for him. It is amazing how many free instruction videos can be found, and there are some great deals for online classes. His skill has improved tremendously since beginning this form of instruction. I also encourage him to use his art in every school subject (yes, even math) and in other opportunities, such as volunteer projects, clubs and church.

    1. YEA! What great ideas. My oldest daughter loves art, so I found art classes for her. She took watercolor classes from a local artist who had his own gallery. I can definitely see how art can integrate into Math. Do you have any suggestions for art instruction? I liked using Visual Manna and Barry Stebbing’s books. But, we also used cartoon drawing books and Draw Squad. I let my kids draw while we read aloud, too

  26. We love to watch football, so I can’t wait to see what is in the activity guide. Thanks, so much, for providing it.

    1. You’re welcome. Let me know if you have any problems downloading it. Would love some feedback about the activities.

  27. My kids have different passions. Art, sports, drama, hard labor. It is hard to incorporate them all but they all get a their time to shine.

  28. In our family, we’re soccer fans (my husband is Argentine). So we’ve done lots of geography and history work, for example, centered around the countries that were playing in the World Cup. This made it so much more interesting for them.

  29. My son loves all sports so this is interesting. My daughter has a passion for history which we have Drive Thru History which she LOVES!! Then we go to the library to find everything we can on what we studying and read, read, read.

  30. I think this is a lovely idea! While I’m not a big sports fan myself, my husband is (especially since our home team is going to the superbowl) & this would be a great way to promote learning & bonding between my daughter & her father.

  31. My parents own goats and chickens and I make sure my 4 year old has time to go and help care for them every day! We also garden a lot and love the out doors. So sometimes that means dropping school work to go out and enjoy and other times it means doing school outside! Thanks for the giveaway!!

    1. Great idea. Flexibility & relaxing are so important. Whatever you choose to do with your time shows your kids what is important to you – including outside times! Congrats on being outside the box.

  32. My daughter loves piano and basketball. She has been struggling with memorization lately, so we have started hanging up her memorization work so that she can study while practicing her dribbling.

  33. My son enjoys leading role playing games. I’ve given him a chart and asked him to chart all the things he’s learning while doing it so I can give him credit. He researched the elements to decide what powers different dragons would have. He’s using story telling to invent the different adventures his group goes on. He’s using math as he adds up points for each player at the end of a session. He’s practicing leadership skills by being the game master. It’s truly a learning activity.

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