How to Create A Unit Study
The thought of creating a unit study can be intimidating. I know. But once you take a look at these tips and resources on how to create a unit study, I think you might just try to create one for yourself! It is easier than you think!
In my earlier years of homeschooling I didn’t really try to create anything myself. Then child number three came along and I started chasing her interests all over the map! One day it was bugs, the next teeth, from there panda bears! What I found was that she was learning so much from the units I created around her interests. (The most unschooly I have ever been by the way!)
How to Create a Unit Study
1. Choose a Spine
Spine you say? Yes. Choose a book or resource to be the spine, or center of your study. This should be something that offers you a general overview of what to cover for the topic you have chosen. It will not be your only resources, but a great stemming point to work from.
I often find that heading to the library to check out books on the chosen topic is a good way to find a spine resource to work from. DK Eyewitness Books are great books to use as a spine because they offer an overview of a specific topic of which you can use to branch out and find more specific resources for the topics covered within.
2. Gather Resources
To help you organize your thoughts and resources for a unit study, you can use this FREE Homeschool Unit Study Planner.
Then, as I already said, the library is my first go to place for resources. I usually pick up a stack of books and any videos I can find related to the topic we are looking to study.
My next stop is the Internet. I do a search for the topic of choice, sometimes using the words unit, printables, or resources, along with the topic name to help me narrow my search.
YouTube is also another stop on my list. You can find videos on almost any topic of study. This step can sometimes take a little time because I like to screen any video before I show them to my children. Once I have selected the videos I want to use I create a Playlist so that my children can work right from there.
Some Internet sources I often end up using are from PBS, The History Channel, and National Geographic.
A large part of our unit studies include some sort of notebooking, or lapbooking. One great thing about these is that it offers a means of documenting what you have done. My daughter (age 8) is filling her bookshelf with lapbooks she has made! She loves to take them down and read them over and over again!
There are tons of free resources at Homeschool Share for both notebooking and lapbooking. We also love notebooking pages from The Notebooking Fairy.
Currclick is another resource I use to find affordable unit study components. They often have freebies as well.
3. Be Flexible
The unit study approach is a fun and engaging way to really immerse your children in a topic. Be flexible enough to follow their lead. If they follow a rabbit hole, let them! We have engaged in so many fun projects, watch interesting documentaries, taken field trips, and more all because we go so into a topic that we had to do, see, and learn more!
February 5, 2015 @ 10:47 pm
I’ve been thinking about doing some unit studies with the kids but they are intimidating. I’m a list person so having a checklist like this is super helpful! Thanks!
February 6, 2015 @ 9:25 am
Kalista, so glad this could be of help to you. While they seem intimidating at first, I promise you it isn’t too bad. It is just a matter of compiling the resources and then deciding how to go about working with them. Plus they are lots of fun!
February 9, 2015 @ 10:45 am
Thanks for sharing this information. I’m hoping to homeschool my daughter next year and love the idea of unit studies this will be a great resource as I try and learn how to put them together.
Encouraging Independent Readers, Creating Your Own Unit Study, and More: The Ultimate Homeschool Pinterest Party! | Free Homeschool Deals ©
February 13, 2015 @ 11:53 pm
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