A valuable investment for every family with children

By Linda Dobson of Parent at the Helm - home schooling advocate, speaker, and author of multiple titles, including The Art of Education: Reclaiming Your Family, Community, and Self

From the Parent at the Helm website:

Author Nadine Slavinsky earned a Master’s in Education at Harvard and is a lifelong sailor who has enjoyed two long sabbatical with her husband and son, sailing the Atlantic and Pacific oceans while homeschooling. Lesson Plans to Go: Hands-On Learning for Active and Homeschooling Families is her fifth book, and not only does she cover science, math, writing, history, navigation and physical education, each of the ten extensive lessons include age-appropriate adaptations, covering the range of about four- to twelve-year-olds.

From the Lesson Plans to Go Introduction: Natural learning opportunities arise everywhere – at home, on the road, on the beach…Different families will use the materials presented here in different ways. Some will choose to keep things informal, concentrating on the main idea and hands-on activities. Others will dive in, using the text and suggested assignments as part of their homeschooling. This book is not prescriptive: it’s for you to use the way you want, the way that works for your family.

In addition to the age-appropriate adaptations, all units include a section on enrichment for those who would like to extend a topic that has captured your child’s imagination. There are cross-curricular links with important interconnections between subject areas, and resource sections that point out supplementary materials like recommended books and quality educational websites.

Inside Lesson Plans to Go

As if that wasn’t enough, three appendices offer:

  • Other topics for hands-on study
  • Sample unit breakdown
  • Cross-Reference to Academic Standards

Lesson Plans to Go keeps needed material lists as inexpensive as possible, utilizing many items you already have in your home. To that end, this book provides a low cost approach to all of these learning activities:

  • Model the lunar cycle
  • Dissect a fish
  • Try chemistry
  • Graph resource use
  • Study geometry
  • Develop journal, non-fiction, and creative writing skills
  • Bring the voyages of Columbus and Lewis & Clark to life
  • Master compass use and mapping
  • Study heart and exercise

As stated on the back cover, “This book is for any parent interested in taking an active part in their children’s education.” Yes, that includes homeschooling parents, but also all parents who would like to help their children see learning as fun and an inherent aspect of living will get much out of this book. Importantly, Nadine provides enough information, along with the lessons, to help parents learn how to go beyond the ten lessons collected in the book to capture the many learning experiences that greet us daily. That, in itself, makes this book a valuable investment for every family with children.