In Cathy Duffy’s Book, 100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum, she outlines a few key learning styles. One of those styles she calls, “Sociable Sue.” If your child loves interaction, is warm and responsive, interested in people, motivated by relationships, and care what others think of them, they may be a “Sociable Sue.” (Or Sam!)
Duffy says in her book, and I agree, that most children have more than one learning style to some degree. However, one of my girls, Coco, is definitely a Sociable Sue. It took some trial and error on my part to find what worked best for her when I took her out of a school she was very happy in and began to teach her at home, where she was with just me and her six year old sister all day.
I have found much information for hands-on learners, visual or audio learners, and independent learners. When it comes to social learners, there just doesn’t seem to be as many ideas for the homeschool mom. The most information I could find was: Work in groups. Well, then. That doesn’t quite work for the homeschool mom of two, does it?
I have put together a list of 10 things you may want to incorporate into your social learner’s day:
Reading aloud. Even my teenager still likes when we sit and read aloud together. She also reads independently each day, which is just as important, but reading together meets the need to interact. Mostly, I’ll do the reading, but sometimes I’ll have her do it.
Presentations. I try to regularly give an opportunity to showcase her work, whether it is her latest book report or history timeline. We keep it simple and it’s just her parents and sister watching, but she puts a great deal of detail and thought into these presentations.
Reciting Poetry or Verses. I do this with my 6yo, who is actually not such a social learner, and I find that it is helping her, too. She is still a bit shy, but we keep it casual and she’s beginning to look forward to the evenings when she gets to recite a poem.
Discussions. Every week or so, I will put a card in Coco’s workbox that says, “Discuss History with mom.” Then, we’ll simply sit on the couch and talk about what we’ve learned that week.
Let her teach. Often, I’ll ask her to teach me something she’s learned. It not only gives her one more chance to interact, it reinforces what she’s learned.
Plan get-togethers. We are big party-planners around here. Often, I’ll recruit the kids for ideas for our next gathering. Planning around a history theme can be great fun, and again reinforces all they’ve learned.
Monthly book club. Once a month, Coco gets together with other students from one of our homeschool groups and they discuss novels. Look for opportunities like this in your area, or start your own.
Blogging. Coco started a blog a while back, and while I choose to have her blog anonymously, she still enjoys the interaction with readers via comments.
Games. Finding educational games is so easy these days! They’re not just good for hands on learners. I’ll often put a pack of cards for a hand of rummy, or math bingo in one of Coco’s workboxes. Even silly, quick games like Old Maid break up those times where she needs to be working independently.
Field Trips. We have some opportunities for field trips with the groups we belong to, but I also plan my own. Besides being fun, these give Coco the opportunity to be out of the house, ask someone else questions, and oftentimes interact with a group.
Do you have any ideas for social learners?
Angela can be found writing at Homegrown Mom.
This post is linked to Works for Me Wednesday.
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