Sometimes screens get a bad rap when it comes to homeschooling. While there are certainly challenges, there are lots of awesome benefits to using technology in your homeschool too. Today, I want to encourage you to give screens a chance.
If you’re willing to try adding tech to your homeschool lessons, you’ll soon find all kinds of new opportunities and adventures online. Tablets, smart watches, YouTube, and live online classes are just a few of the fun ways you can incorporate tech into your homeschool.
Keep reading to discover all my favorite tech options for homeschooling. Plus, pro tips on how to make technology work for you this school year.
Don’t Be Afraid To Add Screens To Your Homeschool
Screens definitely get a bad rap, but they aren’t all bad. Here at The Waldock Way, adding technology to our homeschool has also added a lot of value to the experiences for our entire family with fun apps, documentaries, and the discovery of gameschooling. I want to encourage you not to be afraid to add screens to your homeschool lesson plans. There are so many unique opportunities for learning with tech!
For starters, incorporating screens in your homeschool lessons has all kinds of cool outcomes! You might find that even your most reluctant learners are more engaged when you add screens. Plus, young learners seem to retain more of the information they learn from videos and apps than they would from listening to a lecture.
How We Use Technology In Our Homeschool
Don’t be afraid to use technology in your homeschool this year. I’m totally sold on adding screens and technology to our lessons here. In fact, tech definitely helped us all survive 2020 with some valuable opportunities for socialization and independent learning when we were all stuck under one roof.
Every Waldock Way unit study includes options for incorporating technology into your homeschool. You’ll get custom-curated YouTube playlists, videos, and gaming options you can use to take your lessons to the next level.
Want to discover more of our favorite ways to use technology while homeschooling? Check out some of our favorite tech options below.
Emily has her own tablet she can use for reading and learning on the go. This tool has been an important part of our homeschool experience. There are so many great educational apps she can practice math, grammar, spelling, writing, foreign language, and more independently.
She can use her tablet to watch an educational video or YouTube playlist during our learning lunches too. This is a great way for Emily to learn while I have some quiet time to take care of things I need to do in another room too. You can learn more about our learning lunch routine in my Homeschool Routine: Day in the Life post.
We also made the choice to upgrade to a Kindle Paperwhite so she can read for longer periods of time without it hurting her eyes. Plus, it’s way more convenient to load books on the Kindle rather than trying to pack them all. We love it for long road trips!
The Paperwhite also makes it really easy for Emily to read at night in her room while protecting her eyes. I also love that we can use it in the pool because it’s waterproof. That makes learning during the summer months in our Florida home a lot easier!
There are lots of great online curriculum options for homeschoolers you can tap into with some tech in your homeschool. For example, we really love Teaching Textbooks. It’s a computer-based math program for kids from elementary school through high school. You can read more about Why We Love Teaching Textbooks and decide if it’s right for your family in my post all about why it’s our number one choice for homeschooling math.
Live Online Classes
So many awesome online class platforms for kids have started in the last few years! We really like Outschool but there are a few other really great online class sites for kids too. Outschool classes allow Emily to interact with other kids all over the states.
These classes are a great way to get extra socialization with her peers since Emily is an only child. What we really love about them is their ability to enhance our homeschool lessons with new opportunities for her to explore, be curious, and learn about her passions.
Want to learn more about how we use online classes in our homeschool? Discover Online Classes We Love including classes on space, veterinary science, and the Magic Treehouse book series too.
How can you incorporate Fitbit into your homeschool activities? We use it as motivation to get up and get moving. It’s a great way to make sure you’re getting PE credits too.
Fitbits are a lot of fun for family challenges too. We love comparing how many steps we’ve all achieved after a hike or nature walk. You can add a Fitbit challenge to see how many steps everyone accumulates during the week for a little friendly competition.
I’m a big fan of using YouTube in our interest-led unit studies and homeschool lessons throughout the week. We have lots of favorite channels you can explore and learn more about in my latest post. Plus, discover How We Use YouTube in Our Homeschool for all kinds of great tips about how to make this video platform work for you this school year.
We love watching documentaries as a part of our homeschool learning experience too. Documentaries are great for low-pressure learning days after a long weekend or when we aren’t feeling well. We also enjoy watching them together as a family.
These days there are lots of great streaming services you can use to stream documentaries for your homeschoolers at home. Here are a few of our favorites: Netflix, Disney Plus, Prime, Discovery, and Curiosity Stream.
The main reason we like Curiosity Stream is that it’s all educational documentaries and nothing else. It’s filled with Amazing Documentaries for Your Homeschool like Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin and Going Nuts: Tales from Squirrel World.
Make Technology Work For Your Needs
Using technology in your homeschool lessons doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing thing. You don’t need to have a tech plan for every day or even every subject. Instead, pick and choose what works best for you and your homeschool.
I’ve put together a guide to help you get started adding technology to your homeschool lesson plans this year. It’s filled with all my favorite ways to add fun and learning with screens and other tech options. Get my FREE Guide to Using Technology in Your Homeschool to begin learning with screens this year.
Do you have a favorite tech option you like to use with your homeschoolers that I didn’t mention? I’d love to read more about it in the comments! I’m always on the lookout for more fun ways to incorporate tech into our homeschool lesson plans and create new learning opportunities for Emily.