Homeschooling Tips That Start With G. Games, Goals, Groups, Graduation, Government, Grading

Welcome back! This week in our Homeschooling Tips from A to Z series, is the letter G. 

Homeschooling Tip #1: Games

Games. Who doesn’t love games?

Games are a great way to reinforce and review the topics that you have been studying in your homeschool. 

You don’t have to buy expensive pre-made games, even though they are good, your kids can make their own games, rules, and content themselves. In this way, they can review while they make their game, and then reinforce the information while they play competitively. 

Types of Games

This list of game types can help you and your kids get inspired in their game creation.

  1. Board Games
  2. Piece-based Games (like Jenga)
  3. Dice Games (Yatzee)
  4. Card Games
  5. Pen and Paper Games (Hangman, Tic-Tack-Toe)
  6. Outside Games (Horse shoes, Bocce Ball)
  7. Puzzle Games – mazes, riddles, etc.
  8. Other homemade styles (answer a question correctly and the child gets to do an activity for points – like, throw a rock into cups and whichever cup it goes into is the amount of points they get.)

Game Creation Supplies

If your kids get serious about making their own games, here are some game components that you may want to keep on hand.

  1. Old game boards (yard sales or Goodwill sells old games for cheap)
  2. Dice – different sizes, colors, and dots
  3. Cardstock – to make cards with
  4. Counters, spinners, timers, etc.
  5. Playing tokens – buttons, dimes and even old hands-on math counting objects that a Kindergartener would use to count with. (bears, frogs, etc.)
  6. Art & Craft supplies: Markers, colored pens, colored pencils, scissors, tape, stapler, ruler, etc.
  7. If your child is creative on the computer, they can use Microsoft Word, or something similar, and then create their board game and cards with that and then print it. 

Games from Homeschooling Highway

I’ve been blessed to be able to create a few games that, I hope, will be a blessing for you too. Feel free to click on each title for more information and to sign up for your own free copy.

  1. Outdoor Scavenger Hunt: Use your Bible to uncover the clue.
  2. Indoor Scavenger Hunt: Use your Bible to uncover the clue.
  3. Zonk – A review game for any subject.
  4. Themed Sword Drill #1: Dealing with Fear
  5. Themed Sword Drill #2: Love
  6. Themed Sword Drill #3: Prayer
  7. Printable board game and blank cards template

Homeschooling Tip #2: Goal Setting

Goal setting requires evaluation. Evaluation requires critiquing, and I’ve always felt that since I wanted to do well homeschooling my kids, that I needed to routinely critique, evaluate, and then set goals for myself and my kids. 

If you’re an overachiever, then be careful that you’re not setting goals that are too hard for you and your children to obtain. There’s nothing worse then feeling disappointed because you didn’t get everything done that you wanted to. 

Types of Homeschooling Goals

  • School subjects: What subjects do you think are important for your children at this time? Is there any school related information that your child needs to catch up on and learn?
  • Home: What areas around the house can your kids help out with more?
  • Habits: Are there any bad habits that need stopped? Are there any good habits that need started?
  • Character: Are there any character traits that  your children need to improve? 
  • Spiritual: Any spiritual improvements or habits that need to be improved or started?
Homeschool Tips that begin with the letter G

Implementing Your Homeschooling Goals

Usually before the school year starts, I sit down with my kids and goal over the goals that I thought of. Depending on your child, you may only want to concentrate on one or two goals at a time. 

You and your child can then decide how to reach this goal in the best possible manner. Is this something that will be worked on each day? Once a week? 

Having a reward system set up can work wonders and be a great incentive to make a habit goal last. 

Rewards can be as simple as acknowledging a good behavior verbally, placing a sticker on a math sheet that got an “A”, checking off a box on a chart, or sharing the completed goal with friends or family.

Evaluating your Homeschooling Goals

Personally, I like to make my goals at the beginning of the school year.

In the middle of the year I reevaluate those goals and see how we’re doing. You can do this with your child, if you want to. 

If something needs changed or new goals need to be made for the second half of the school year, then I make those changes. 

Homeschooling Tip #3: Groups

We’ve covered groups a little bit with our Homeschooling Tips that Start with the Letter C post. In that post, we discussed Co-ops. This is where a group of homeschool students get together to study or create something together as a group. 

Depending on the rules of the group, moms take turns teaching or coming up with a craft, experiment, or something else fun to do. 

It’s a great time for the kids to make friends and learn something new too. 

Homeschooling Tip #4: Graduation

Graduation will soon be upon us. 

My son has already graduated from our homeschool, and my oldest daughter will be graduating in a couple of weeks.

Our church provides us with the oversight requirement needed for my state. Being part of their oversight, and following their policies, procedures, and requirements, they give our seniors a high school diploma. 

At the end of the school year, our church has a special time of recognition for each child that is moving on to the next grade. They each receive a special certification of promotion, and they get to walk up front to receive it. The congregation applauds and makes each child feel special. 

The graduate(s) come up also when it is their turn to receive their diploma. The church also gives them a good study Bible with their name engraved on it.

After the service, we have a church picnic under the pavilion for the church congregation and for the friends and family of the graduate. 

There’s tons of food, a special cake, presents, and decorations. 

Homeschooling Tip #5: Government

When I was in public school, I couldn’t stand my Civics class. I don’t know why, but I just didn’t like it. 

Homeschooling Tips that start with the letter G

Unfortunately, I wish I had learned more about how the government works, how a bill becomes a law, the different branches of government, etc.

Now, I am having to learn it with my kids. But that’s not a bad thing. They can see, because of me, how important it is to know these topics.

I’ve always taken my kids with me when I vote. I even let them fill in the circle on my ballet, if they’re old enough. As I discuss the candidates with my husband, I try to include my kids so that way they know the items that we are looking for in our candidates. 

If you are unfortunate enough to have to go to a traffic court, take the kids along. It’s a good eye opener and you can also put this down as a field trip!

Homeschooling Tip #6: Grading

Depending on your state requirements, grading and evaluating your child’s learning can be done in different ways.

When my kids were in the elementary ages our oversight said that we didn’t have to give alphabet letter grades. So we just said Outstanding, Satisfactory, or Needs Improvement.

When you need to give an alphabet grade, I’ve seen two different ways. The way I do for my kids, a 90-100 is an A,  80-89 is a B,  70-79 is a C,  60-69 is a D, and any thing under that is a failing grade.

In some instances I’ve seen the grading scale be more strict with a 95-100 being an A,  90-94 is a B, etc.

If you’re child does not need a test score or grade for a subject, then there are other ways to assess competency. 

Your child could retell the information in their own words, write a detailed report or essay, or just get a 100% on a worksheet. 

Homeschooling Tip #7: Geography

Don’t get me wrong, I love the technology of the day, but I feel it is also making our kids miss out on some necessary skills that they may need in an emergency.

I’m talking here about Map Skills. Beyond the basics of north, south, east, and west; latitude and longitude; the location of countries, states, provinces; I think kids are missing out on how to read a map.  Could our kids survive without our beloved GPS device?

Can you think of any other homeschooling tips that begin with the letter G? If so, just write them in the comment section. I always love hearing from my readers.

If you missed last week’s posts from other wonderful homeschool bloggers, I’ll put their posts and links below. 

You don’t want to miss out on reading them, they’re very good. 

Lego ABC’s: F is for Farm, by Our Homeschool Notebook
For the Children’s Sake, by Every Bed of Roses
Footprint Casts, by Every Bed of Roses
Fire Safety Resources, by Every Bed of Roses
Fire Services Museum Victoria, by Every Bed of Roses
Free Homeschool Resources, by Every Bed of Roses
Field Trips – 10 in Melbourne, by Every Bed of Roses
F is for Face (Pie Face), by Our Homeschool Notebook
F is for Fort Sumter, by A Mom’s Quest to Teach
F is for Fire Safety, by A Mom’s Quest to Teach
Discovering the “F” Rabbits of the World, by At Home Pets
F: How to Feed Rabbits, by A Net in Time
F is for Frogs, by A Net in Time
Faure’ – Composers ABC’s, by At Home: Where Life Happens

If you’d like to look at this week’s “G” posts, just click on the link below.

Blogging Through the Alphabet: The Letter G

If you would like to read more Homeschooling Tips from A to Z, just click on the alphabet letter below. 

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  1. We love games in our homeschool, and geography is one of my favorite subjects to learn about. I’m definitely not a geography expert, not even close, but it’s so interesting for me to learn about!

    1. Ellen@HomeschoolingHighway says:

      Yes, me too. Thank you for commenting, Megan!

  2. Desiree W. says:

    I was the same way learning about government as a kid/teen. I wasn’t really into it. I am now starting to learn and study about it myself. Also, that’s really cool that your church has a homeschool recognition program. Thanks for the tips!

    1. Ellen@HomeschoolingHighway says:

      Your welcome, Desiree. Thank you for commenting.

  3. Once more, lots of great thoughts and ideas included in your letter G listing. This time of year, graduation is all around us. We just did our Senior Sunday at church where they present a Bible and pray specifically for the seniors on Sunday morning, the Sunday evening lesson is directed towards seniors, and the after worship Sunday evening we have a fellowship meal and the seniors are presented with a hand-made quilt that the ladies of the congregation have designed and created just for each young person. Sending them out into the world is a momentous time and we hope that each young person sees and feels that their church family has their back so they can face the world for God.

    1. Ellen@HomeschoolingHighway says:

      Awww, that Senior Sunday sounds so nice. I can’t believe that the ladies make a quilt for each senior. That is so sweet.

  4. I really love all these topics! As I was reading through I was thinking about which one or two I wanted to comment upon but it is not easy. After reading your tips about graduation, I am a bit sad that our church doesn’t really focus upon homeschooling. I would love it if they had sometime special and fun for the graduating homeschoolers (or even just all the graduating kids – public, private, or homeschool).

    1. Ellen@HomeschoolingHighway says:

      Yes, Kristen, it is wonderful that the church recognizes the students every year. Maybe you could start a new tradition there, even if it’s just reading their names out loud and having them stand up.

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