How to Use the Library as a Family Resource for Homeschooling
Homeschooling is not for the weak. It is very demanding, and requires dedication from all parties involved.
One of the best things about homeschooling is that no matter what your need is, you are guaranteed to find excellent resources at your local library. And the best part? They are FREE (unless you forget to return them on time 😉 )
When things get boring or your curriculum budget is non-existent, you must find a way to keep your children interested and educated. What better way than making a trip to the library? The library is full of all sorts of resources to use during your homeschool journey. Here are some great examples.
Sometimes hearing someone else read a story is all it takes to get your young scholars interested in books and learning. After all, if you were home all day every day with the same person, wouldn’t you look forward to a little bit of change? Many times the audio recordings include fun and lively voices from the narrator.
What if you have an auditory learner? There are so many excellent historical tales, biographies, and adventures to be found and learned from with the audiobooks available today! Select some fantastic living books for your children and allow them to choose some for themselves. While you’re there, pick out a few for yourself!
Check out your library’s audio book section for a change of pace. Some libraries even have digital audiobook loan systems so you can listen through your favorite electronic device.
While you listen to the audiobooks, you can do handicrafts, build with LEGO, or enjoy a relying car trip while the kids listen to the story.
Free DVD Rentals
Books and audiobooks are not the only resources you will find at your local library. Most libraries have added a movie section.
The movies range from kids shows and new releases to educational movies and documentaries. Check out the selection of videos to see which ones you can incorporate into your curriculum.
We are big lovers of documentaries here. The visual/auditory input is perfect for my 8 year old with ADHD. It keeps him involved and immersed in the facts and he loves to watch over and over again till he feels like he’s the “expert”.
We also enjoy the movie versions of classic literature. We often do unit studies around classics like Swiss Family Robinson and Treasure Island and follow it up with the movie! It’s a fun way to cement the learning.
The library computer center is great when you have multiple kiddos and only one computer. Plus, you will not have to foot the bill for the internet.
It’s also a good place for your older children to have quiet study and research time at the grown up computer center while the younger children peruse the children’s book stacks and play on the children’s computers.
Just be sure to bring a little money if you or your researchers intend to print out any pages because you will likely get charged for each page that is printed.
Many libraries have clubs and classes geared toward particular age groups.
Sometimes the book clubs are for adults, but there are also book clubs for older kids and elementary ages. If you have older children take a look at your library’s events calendar to see when the book clubs take place and which books to check out.
Book clubs are a great way to explore the literature, meet new friends, and have some time away from siblings. Most of our kids love each other fiercely, but occasionally need a break! A book club is a fun and educational way for that to happen.
Check out the Play Area
Let’s be honest, some libraries have amazing play areas. and awesome children’s programming.
If you have smaller children, this is a great resource to use. Your little ones can play, while you do school work with some older ones. How awesome is that? Every parent knows that kids LOVE playing with toys that aren’t theirs.
And you get some quiet time with your older children or a few minutes to catch up on your own reading. Everyone wins and you haven’t spent a ton on homeschool curriculum, either!
When it comes down to it, the library is a great FREE place to enjoy a change of scenery as a homeschooling family, research, find new resources, and keep your homeschool budget in check.