Teaching our children to become healthy individuals is an integral aspect of both homeschooling and general parenting. While we know that we should incorporate physical education and health courses into our homeschool curriculum, we also need to make sure we take a unified approach to helping our children learn how to pursue physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and environmental (specifically home and organizational) health. Here are some thoughts to consider for Beginning to Understand stage of learning (5th through 8th grade).
Healthy Activities for the Beginning to Understand Stage
Even when homeschooling, it can be difficult to protect children from the information onslaught that pervades our society. This challenges every aspect of a family’s health! During this stage, children begin to grasp cause-and-effect and deeper nuances of the facts they learned in their younger years. Take advantage of that and encourage discussions that help them learn how to process attacks on every aspect of their health.
- Take field trips to doctors’ offices, hospitals, etc. to help take some of the mystery and fear out of these locations.
- As your student begins to understand more about why he or she thinks certain things or feels certain ways, show him or her how to observe those same signals in others. Just as we looked for underlying causes in our children in the previous stage, we can teach them to look for the same causes in others as they begin to understand better.
- Don’t hesitate to teach children how to disagree well. Although we need to be careful about outright fighting in front of our children, it is also important for them to observe disagreements and see how those disagreements can be resolved in a healthy manner.
- Teach your child how to use a planner and set daily routines, including chores, aspects of self care, and personal enrichment.
- Continue growing the daily devotional habit.
- Find opportunities for your child to help care for, teach, or engage with younger children, even while continuing to nourish social engagement with peers, older children, and adults.