A Moment with The Homeschool Minute ~ The Familyman – Todd Wilson, Familyman Ministries

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The Familyman 

I love hands-on learning. In fact, I think hands-on learning is the best way to learn. Now don’t hear me wrong, I don’t think everything needs to be a unit study, like where you recreate the small intestines out of sheets and blankets, dissect an animal, or eat foods that don’t need as many digestive juices (whew, I get tired just thinking that way).

I’m just of the opinion that kids learn best when they’re doing their “thing” with gentle guidance from their parents. It’s building, experimenting, coloring, cooking, traveling, seeing, playing on things and with things, eating, smelling, and experiencing. Sometimes those powerful lessons happen after the “official school” closes for the day.

Again, this is just me, but sometimes I think educators try too hard to force hands-on learning. Too often, it feels made-up, arbitrary, and extremely difficult to pull off. Real, hands-on learning feels natural.

Take last week. We took the whole family to the local children’s zoo. We didn’t have a plan, and we didn’t make the kids report on what they saw. We just walked from exhibit to exhibit, ahhing and oohing over all the diverse animals. My children will never forget feeding an 18′ tall giraffe, and its incredibly long and gross, purple tongue acting as a hand as it picked the leaves from their hands.

Today, my son Abe (12) was carving a wooden sword from a plank of wood, Ike (14) was figuring out how to wire a 220-volt circuit for his new plasma cutter, and Cal (7) and Jed (5) strategized as they played Settlers of Catan.

That my fellow, homeschooling parent, is real, hands-on learning, the best, God-designed way of learning, that you shouldn’t grade. But it sure is messy.

Be real,


Hey, I’ll be speaking in Columbus, Indiana, this weekend at a homeschool group. Did you know you can see where I’ll be speaking anytime you want? Click here to see. Who knows, I may be right in your neck of the woods. Also, If you live less than FIVE hours from northern Indiana, you can have me speak to your homeschool group or church. It’s easy. Math facts are fun and easy to memorize with the Can Do Kids! Our DVD helps your children learn their basic math facts by combining two subjects: the basic math facts and physical education. Designed for pre-school through 6th grade. We make learning fun and easy! Visit us today

Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it. - Proverbs 22:6

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