Creating your own customized unit study for your child is much easier than you might think. With a bit of time and planning ( of course Pinterest counts as research) you can immerse your child in something they love-having a passion for your topic makes it natural for you to absorb and learn so much more than a topic you are not interested in.
This is what makes unit studies so great-they are a way to cover your topic in depth, covering every subject. Whether your style is classic, Charlotte Mason, eclectic, or unschooling of some degree unit studies are fun and have a lot to offer. So how do you go about creating one on your own? I have a few simple steps that will help you pull one together in just an afternoon.
How to Create Your Own Unit Study
Pick your topic- Easier said than done because there are so many amazing topics out there to cover. You can create a unit study around science, art, history, and even nature studies.I love to pull from seasons, holidays, or current events as much as possible. For example with an election coming up this year it is the perfect time to study U.S. Presidents, the election process, and anything of that nature.
Gather what you already have- Check your bookshelves and anywhere else you store resources. We have a pretty well stocked bookshelf and can usually find 1 or 2 books at least on most subjects that interest already. Pull from your craft supplies, manipulatives, etc… anything that could fit into your topic.
Search the internet- The internet is of course, as you already know, an invaluable resource for information on every topic under the sun. Search your topic on Google and peruse Pinterest- you are not likely to come up anywhere near empty handed. Here you can gather things to support your unit study like; suggestions for book lists, worksheets, printables, downloadable unit studies, file folder games, lapbooks, apps and online games. Pin anything that might interest you on a specially marked board, later on you can narrow it down and print just what you want.
Use your library- There is still nothing quite like the resources at the library. Not only can you find books on every subject but most libraries have additional resources that may not have known were even available. Studying the human body? Your library may have a full size skeleton available for loan. Within your county you may be able to access items like a microscope, art reproductions, telescopes, and dvds. Call your local library and see if they have a program in place for these resources.
Put it together- Once you decide how long you want your unit study to be pull out your planner ,weekly schedule, or spiral bound notebook and begin to plot out your days, remember to include your base subjects. These are easy to find in your theme especially for the younger kids. But, I have literally just put a couple stickers in the theme on a math worksheet and you would have thought math was a new video game-they were that excited!
No matter what the subject is I have a few more tips that will help your unit study be successful
- Be sure to include hands on activities and field trips.
- Give it chance, but if it’s just not holding interest move on to something else.
- On the other hand, If your child is really enjoying it feel free to lengthen your study by including subtopics and going more in depth.
- Over plan just a bit so you have plenty to choose from.
- It’s okay if you don’t get to everything
- Have fun WITH your child