Sometimes as homeschoolers we struggle with fitting in electives and enrichment activities and subjects – the extras. Well, in our house we call them the extras because they are the really fun part of homeschooling. The icing on the homeschool cake. The things we look forward to like art, nature study, music appreciation and more. But I feel strongly that mixing in a balance of enriching subjects makes for a happy child and a happy mama. A well educated child.
So today our authors are sharing with you their favorite resources for electives and enrichment. And we have also gathered together a basket full of extras to give away to one blessed Curriculum Choice reader!
What is included in our Electives and Enrichment Basket Giveaway?
1. A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels ebook – Looking for an easy way to add art to your days? With A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels ebook – just add chalk pastels and paper! This ebook includes art lessons that can be completed in 10-15 minutes; 100 pages of tutorials, photos, tips; 45 tutorials in all. For more details please see A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels.
2. One box of 24 chalk pastels.
3. Late Spring NaturExplorers Bundles from Shining Dawn Books – Spring is so full of life! Birds noisily fetch food for their young and teach them diligently to fly; wildflowers can be found just about anywhere you look; and signs of erosion abound after all the rain of early spring. Use this bundle to help you fully enjoy the wonders of spring with your children!
4. Copywork Quotes from the American Revolution- Have your child practice writing while copying famous quotes from the American Revolution. Quotes by Benjamin Franklin, John Adam, Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and more.
5. Maestro Classics – My Name is Handel – “My Name is Handel includes a 24-page activity book included with the CD contains the history of the harpsichord and organ, words to a sing-along song, information about Handel’s life, puzzles, and more. MP3 download from Maestro Classics website includes a PDF of the activity booklet.”
More Resources for Adding Enrichment to Your Homeschool
Five Days of How to Fit in All the Homeschool Extras including declaring an ‘Extras Day’, the extras within sight, time management and more. “There just might be some of us pulling along a big bag of guilt for not getting to certain things in our homeschool. Do you have curriculum still sitting on your shelf – yet to crack it open? It’s okay.”
How to Fit in All the Extras and Survive A schedule, of sorts, for the extras “We sort of have certain days of the week we enjoy the extras: Every day, while the children eat lunch, I read Manners Made Easy. Also sometimes a Proverb and a selection from 365 Days of Celebration and Praise…”
One More Thing After Lunch “One more thing after lunch. One more thing after lunch. This is the one thing that really changed our homeschool. When the children were all little we could usually get most of our learning completed before lunch. As they grew and the needs of the age range grew as well, I struggled to fit it all in.”
Seasoned Mom Tip #1: Balance Academic and Project-Driven Learning: “Traditional Monday through Friday schedule with mornings for academics and afternoons for projects and exploring interests. This plan for homeschooling in high school allows a daily balance between academic learning and personal interests.”
Finding Time for Nature Study, Art, Music, Poetry and PE in High School: “Finding time for these subjects has provided the balance my boys crave in their high school years. These subjects provide a sort of a relief valve in their day.”
Nature Study: Struggling With Consistency and Focus: “Don’t feel you have to spend big blocks of time outdoors…everyone can spare fifteen minutes.” Includes a free nature study encouragement printable.
Battle Homeschool Boredom with Extras- “This is the time of year when we all seem to be feeling a bit burned out, uninspired and down right exhausted. Realize that as homeschoolers you do so much. Don’t let the midyear dull drums discourage you or keep your homeschool from soaring to new heights. Instead see it as a chance to breathe new life into your program.”
5 Easy Steps to a Unit Study– “Use the S~P~I~N~E method to build your our unit study with extras to boot! S=Select a Spine, P=Pick a Reader, I= Incorporate Subjects, N= Next Read Aloud, and E= End with a project.”
Reasons to Nature Journal– “Learning to do a nature notebook or nature journal is a process. You discover the best way to have a nature notebook by just getting out in nature, observing it and then recording what you see… You may only have a chance to do nature study once a week. But over a year or two you will have accumulated a wonderful collection of entries.”
Why We’ve Never Joined a Co-op – Many homeschooling families love co-ops, but such group learning has never worked for us. There are many reasons: logistics, time, distance, learning styles, and more. When I wrote this post two years ago, I thought we might soon join a co-op, but we never did. Instead, we explored other ways of adding enrichment to our homeschool:
Beyond the Basics: Making ‘Extras’ Work in Your Homeschool-When you focus on providing a rigorous education for your children, you are very busy. So are your kids. There seems to be little time and energy left for extras like life skills, personal projects, rabbit trails, art, music, nature, reading aloud, volunteering, and competitions. It is, however, important to find extras that will work for your family and to fit them into your homeschool.
Our Guidelines for Going Out– We use these guidelines when considering an out-of-the-home learning opportunity. This list has really simplified decision making for our family.
Why So Many Activities?- Years ago, I discussed the advantages for kids, parents, and families of being involved in fewer outside activities. This mindset has been a real blessing to our family.
More review team features
Special Discount Code for Curriculum Choice Readers!
Southern Hodgepodge is offering $5 off the purchase of A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels. Just use discount code CurriculumChoice at checkout. Offer good through 4/30/2013.
Now for the basket giveaway!
One reader will win the contents of the basket pictured above. (Basket not included). The box of chalk pastels and CD will be mailed to the winner (arriving in separate packages). All ebooks will be delivered via email to the winner.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Don’t miss all the basket giveaways with iHomeschool Network! Click over to enter the other basket giveaways!
(1) Mad Scientist Basket from Milk and Cookies
(2)†”See the Light” Easter Art Basket from Classic Housewife
(3)†Tea Time Basket from See Jamie Blog
(4)†Butterfly Basket from Spell Outloud
(5)†Family Movie Night Basket from Jennifer A. Janes
(6) Pamper the Homeschool Mom Basket from Granola Mom 4 God
(7) Freezer Cooking Basket from Motherhood on a Dime
(8) Hodgepodge Basket from Hodgepodge
(9) Healthy Living and Fitness Basket from Forever, For Always, No Matter What
(10) Making Writing Fun Basket from This Reading Mama
(11) Coffee: Fuel for Homeschooling Moms Basket from Homeschoolin’ Mama
(12) Mom’s Quiet Time Basket from Upside Down Homeschooling
(13) Missionary Basket from Our Journey Westward
(14) Happy Mom Basket from Habits for a Happy Home
(15) Crafty Goodness Basket from Mamas Learning Corner
(16) Rejuvenate the Mom Basket from Spoonful of Imagination
(17) Beginner’s Math Manipulatives Basket from Meet Penny
(18) Welcome Spring: Gardening Basket from Abundant Life
(19) Healthy Living Basket from The Encouraging Home
(20) Mom’s Pampering Basket from Teaching Mama
(21) Kid’s Gardening Basket from Momma Hopper
(22) The Gift of Parenting Basket from Teachers of Good Things
(23) Preschool Crafts Basket from It’s Gravy, Baby!
(24) All the Extras – Electives and Enrichment Basket from Curriculum Choice
(25) Homeschool Mom Basket Case Basket from Classic Housewife
Unit Studies by Amanda Bennett: Your Passport to Learning Adventures!
Southern Gal says
I’d love to add music and art appreciation. My son takes music and art lessons, but I’d love to do more in the day to day. Thanks for the chance!
Nicole M says
I would like to add more interesting projects to our school…especially for my son who has Aspergers:)
Rachel N. says
We’re really looking forward to getting in a lot of nature study this spring. The nature books included in this basket would be a great addition to the walks we’ve planned!
Karen Rogers says
As always, you ladies are an inspiration! All of the items in this Easter basket look so wonderful–just what we need to encourage us to make time for the “icing on the cake”. Thanks for the chance!
Stephanie Pruiett says
We need more art and have never done music. This is only our second year though.
Rebekah Shaver says
I would LOVE to add music and art to our studies, so this basket would be GREAT!! 🙂
More nature study!
Kim @ Homesteader's Heart says
That looks wonderful. I really want to add art as both my boys love to draw and paint and such. I just really didn’t know where to start. Thanks for the chance to enter.
Wendi S says
Looking forward to adding more nature study in this spring…
Carlyn Canady says
I want to add music appreciation and some nature study.
What a cool idea! We don’t get to alot of this topics, but would love too.
I am looking forward to receiving the Nature bundle or the chalk pastels 🙂
Thank you for this post. Information I needed! I struggle with fitting in the extras which are very often the “good stuff” that adds so much to our homeschool.
sherrie mckinney says
I would love to add more music/music history for my children.
It is so true that it’s hard to find time for the “extras”–in homeschooling and life! i love thinking of it as the icing. Hopefully I can teach my kids to find just the right amount of icing in their education!
I have several things ready to add to our homeschool, just haven’t figured out how to squeeze them in yet! Poetry, hymns, Shakespeare, nature study, and extra things like embroidery and knitting are all waiting in the shadows!
I’d love to add art studies to our week. I find the extras often get lost in the day to day business.
OH WOW, I would love to win any of these great baskets. What a wonderful idea……..
Wendy Pierce says
Music….been looking at Maestro Classics as well as Confessions of a Homeschooler’s Composer Study.
kristy michelle says
I would love to add more classical composers and artists studies.
Any basket would be great.
The extras in this basket would add so much to our new homeschool!!
Melissa D says
We have a gospel bluegrass band, so my daughter knows about THAT kind of music, but I’d like to expand into more genres.
Pam Frohn says
I need to put nature study back in. It apparently got put on ice this winter!
Marsha Nixon says
Looking forward to adding some fun to this homeschool! :o)
I am always searching for ideas & what going to work best for my girls for school.
Sabrina L says
I would love to add more music, art, wood working, and more cooking.
What an amazing giveaway!!! I would love to have one of these baskets! Bloggers that give with love receive so much more when they give. I read some of your blog……AWESOME stuff!!
Our biggest challenge is art. I have been better about it this year, but really want to amp it up a little next year!
Nature studies, now that it is spring!
We want to do more music and outdoor nature studies complete with drawings on the spot for art. We are very excited to get started and can’t wait for spring! Thank you for the chance at your beautiful basket.
We are starting a new homeschool, so it would ALL be new! I’m especially hoping to include lots of art and music study 🙂
Phyllis at All Things Beautiful says
We have sure missed the extras since we have been doing just the basics with the moving around and my diagnosis. I am looking forward to adding back in the art, music, nature studies and the like.
I’ve been debating which art history and music curriculum to use, I’ve seen the discs that is in the basket and would love to win thanks
I’d love to do more art with my boys.
Brenda T. says
This would be wonderful!
Angela Hall says
I am not artistic at all, but my oldest daughter is and she is always wanting to do art. I just give the kids paint and let them go. So this would be great!
Connie lee says
Wow, what a basket! I’m impressed and inspired by your homeschool blog!
Christine M says
The nature study – my kids love it, but we never seem to fit it in!
more nature and music
I would add art and music.
Vicki B. says
I have attempted to add art to our learning several times but it always gets swept aside.
[email protected] says
Music – we don’t do enough of that around here!
I’ve been wanting to focus more on art and music lately. Such a great giveaway!
I want to begin an art elective. Your basket give away would be a great start to doing more art.
Quinna B says
I love adding in little extras to make the day better!
Pastels, chalk, art of any kind — I need more color hanging on my walls by my favorite artist:)
would love this!
My boys love art and music…this would bring a whole new level to our homeschooling that I haven’t pursued yet.
I would love the music cd to add music to our hs days!
We do so many extras in the form of activities outside our home that we forget extras at home too. We are not very good at art or nature studies. I’ve been trying, but time just seems to get away from us.
I’m excited about the Maestro Cds
Oh the pastels book and pastels would be such a huge hit with my girls. Great giveaway!
Such a wonderful giveaway. I love all of the items!
I would love my kids to try more art. These pastels would be awesome.
What a great giveaway! We’ve got new music lovers over here…we would love some classical!
Jessica W says
I am hoping to implement art and music with my kids next year, and I look forward to teaching them Spanish one day!
Art and the pastels book and pastels look great
We are just getting started. My daughter turned 3 last Saturday. I have been researching everything that is out there. Everything you have listed here is on my list to try to include in our homeschooling experience. We would be thrilled to win it!
Christy T says
We are planning to begin homeschooling in the fall. I hope to include art, music & nature studies into our days.
Vicki MacRoberts says
What a great basket!
Angie D says
I have wanted to introduce more nature study. What a vastly beautiful world God created, and I need to do more with the kids in exploration. Even better if we do more homeschool extras WHILE being surrounded by nature. 🙂
Tiffany M says
I would like to add more art study in our homeschool.
I have been really wanting to try that music program, just can’t spend the money on it right now, would love to get it, thanks
i’d love to add more art because my 5 year old daughter adores art.
My children have been asking to add a Nature Study enrichment course to our homeschool so that is my goal…something we can also learn from and enjoy!
I’m hoping to add more fine arts…museum visits, children’s theater, puppet theater and musical performances.
Okay, first, THANKS for the giveaway! I’m glad I found it b/c this looks like a great blog that I will frequent!
Secondly, we have young ones and my oldest loves art…but I never make quite enough time to get to it regularly…so more art focus. I hope to build our own curriculum centered around much of that and nature studies 🙂
Amy P says
I would like to add more music study – last year did a little more of that, but haven’t fit it in as much this year. Want to do composer and orchestra study, as well as hymn study.
We love extras – in spite of my best intentions it just seems hard to fit them in sometimes! Winning your basket would be just the push I need! Thanks for the opportunity! =)
Theresa Christophersen says
We have been trying to implement art study and art projects into our homeschool week, but haven’t succeeded yet. Great basket giveaway!!
abi cochran says
History books are my favorite
Next year we are adding French so when we go to France, my kids can have a clue what is going on.
barb sheffer says
Teaching my kids to sing in parts.
Love adding extras into our school day, but I unfortunately don’t always find as much time as I would like! Winning this basket would give me the motivation I need! Thank you for the opportunity! =)
Tracey M. says
I really need to add in nature study into our homeschool day. I tend to slack in this department due to lack of resources and ideas. The NaturExplorers Bundle would be of great help! My daughter loves birds and flowers so she will find these units particularly enjoyable. I have been eyeing the bird study for quite some time and winning this giveaway would give us the chance to try it (them). The erosion study would be great to incorporate into our day as well. I am also looking for ways to supplement our music study – Handel is actually one of the composers we are studying this year. I would like to try Maestro Classics. I saw their booth at a homeschool conference but was unable to purchase any items at the time. The chalk art looks like loads of fun! My daughter would get a kick out of the book projects.
Nancy S. says
Though one son does take some outside music lessons, I would like to have more music within our home. I’d also like to incorporate more art. Thanks for the chance to win! 🙂
I want to add nature study to our homeschool.
Thanks to your great tutorials and encouragement, we are actively working to add more art to our schedule!
Amy H. says
The chalk pastels look great! I remember using them when I was a child and loving them.
Shannon H says
We haven’t started homeschooling yet (my oldest is just now 4 years old), but I want to make sure we include music, both appreciation and learning an instrument.
We’ve been trying to start adding nature study into our homeschool
Alicia Charmbury says
I am hoping to add even more nature study in the way of art and music appreciation in my homeschool studies with my children!
With spring and summer coming we want to add alot more outside stuff. I’m thinking nature journaling.
Sarah D says
I would love to add art next year. I have a very creative and artistic oldest who would benefit from learning techniques to add to his creativity.
I really want to find a way to include more art projects… and music history as well!
I would definitely love to add more art to our homeschool week. I would also like to add more group phys. ed. and more FUN!
I really want to add art- I am intimidated by it and I know we should just do it!
I love everything in the basket! Would really enjoy winning it!
Jessica A. says
I will be adding music and art this year!
What a lovely give away. I think we would totally love the pastels!
Sarah MK says
I would love to add more music to our homeschooling!
This is great! Thank you.
Karen MP says
Starting to homeschool in the fall, this would be perfect for us!
Erica @ Spoonful of Imagination says
I need more science and history next year!
Becky M says
We desperately need to add more art & crafts into our homeschool.
I hope I win.
Alicia @ La Famille says
We need more music study!
Whitney S. says
I’d love to do more art!
What a great prize package!
Art and music
Kathy Lundberg says
Daughter takes piano lessons, is involved in chorus & musical drama theater in one of our local homeschool coop. Would love to win this basket, the items would be so timely for our daughter.
I want to add more nature!
Dina Marie Beard (Geraldine) says
Would be a great addition to our plans!
We want to enjoy the great outdoors more (Nature study)!
Jennah S says
I am hoping to add pottery this year..
This looks like lots of fun to win!
Kel H says
Always like to add more art activities to our school year and all year long:)
Tara S. says
I would like to add a drawing class this next year…I have a budding artist who needs some training.
Jessica Andrews says
I want to add more music appreciation through such items as Maestro Classics.
Chelle Thompson says
Arts and crafts
I’d like to add in a study of classical composers/music
Jalynn Patterson says
Some nature study would be nice.
Pick me! Pick me!
Would love some new pastels and some nature exploring ebooks!
Jennifer Cantner says
I always struggle with art. I don’t feel gifted in that area, so it’s easy for me to forget it!
I want to get more art into our curriculum, so this is just what I need 🙂
I’d love to add more nature study to our days. We live in Alaska, so much of the year is the same but I can feel spring trying to crack through!
I love this!
Angie Peterson says
The classical music would be great to incorporate in class!
We haven’t started homeschooling yet, but can see how electives or a unit study of our children’s interests would be helpful from the dreary book work.
Wendy Clark says
I really want to add music to our school day. I think it would be so interesting. And nice to have playing and learn about what is playing.
Rebecca Barry says
We need more music and art! The kids love it but it is unfortunately the first thing to get dropped when we run out of time :v
Literary Mom says
music/art appreciation, nature study, cooking
Rachel Rentas says
I would love to add more real art…not just occasional crafts.
I really need more art and music!
Great post! Loved your insights on outside activity and co-ops, thank you for sharing! Finding ways to incorporate the very best music AND art is a high priority for our homeschool.
What great ideas! I’m planning to implement more art appreciation into our days next year.
Dawn O says
Thanks for the inspiration. We really needed this to get out of our rutt!
I would like to add more art and music. My son would like to add in handicrafts–carving. Both kids have asked about sewing.
Hands on History and science!
I’d like to add music lessons, as well as art.
Hoping to add nature drawing
That’s quite a basket!
Jenny Shannon says
I want more art and music appreciation 🙂
Sarah Hall says
I am planning to implement a better math program. The one we tried this year was too much.
Kimberly H says
Definitely need to spice up our Nature/Art studies. It doesn’t take much to fall into a “Routine Rut”.
Michelle B. says
we are hoping to do more art
Kathleen P. says
I plan to add more art and music.
Donna Bailey says
This looks like soooo much fun
Fun giveaway! We are just about finishing up our school year. We’re planning a short break – where the only school we do is the extras. 🙂
I REALLY need to incorporate Nature Study.
Ashley Patterson says
I would like to add more Art & Music. :b
Elizabeth B says
I want to start teaching my girls more about music. They have such an interest, I just don’t quite know where to begin…
Kat Riley says
We have started doing geocaching, especially the earthcaches which usually relate to some geology fact.
Music is an important enrichment to add. By doing so, you include lots of history and with a little effort, science as well. And it’s fun.
Music is an important enrichment to add. By doing so, you include lots of history and, with a little effort, science as well. And it’s fun.
What a great incentive to fit in those wonderful homeschooling extras each day. Thanks for the chance to win and blessings.
Rebecca K says
i want to start doing ART again!
I would like to add more art and start a music program.
I’d really like to help my girls keep nature journals.
Alvina Castro says
more focus on writing
We love music around here, but I would love to add more art. We did study a few artists this year, just like we study composers. What a great giveaway basket too!! We would love to win. 🙂
We love art and music around here!
RaShell S says
We are waiting on our order of chalks to start learning! That’s what is new around our place right now. 🙂
Awesome basket. Thanks for offering this.
I love doing the extras in school….art (especially drawing), music, gardening….
Art and music.
Sandra M. says
We plan to add more music education.
Tammy Kindig says
I would like to have our son start a Natural Journal
i would like to add more art and nature study
Getting extras can be our challenge — we have not done much music this year.
I would love to add more art and music to our homeschool.
We’re hoping to add music and more art into our routine. This basket looks fun!
This is a sweet basket indeed, we are certainly in need of instructional materials, these may be ‘extras’ but they are so valuable.
I’d love to incorporate music in a little better!!
My kiddo’s would LOVE this!!
Sarah Evener says
We are new to homeschooling. Everything at this point enriches our days.
Jasmine Bowman says
I would love to add more science experiments!
Kelly Schmidt says
We need more art 🙂
I love adding new music for my kids to listen to!
This looks amazing!
I’d love to add pastel coloring!
This is super! Working to add more writing into our days.
This is really great. There is so many different ways to do this stuff that it can get overwhelming if you don’t have a place to start. Thanks!