Summer “School”

Summer: Take Two

SUMMER is different this year. For starters, many of our kids (collectively speaking) didn’t get one last year. Umm, a summer that is. At least not in the traditional sense. For seconds, this school year was hands down the weirdest ever . . . even for Homeschool families.

Because of all this, I think most of us parents have at least a certain amount of “damage control” on the brain for summer 2021. We want to make up for things our kids missed out on this past year. Like fun, and activities, and experiences, and carefree childhood innocence for that matter. And while it’s a fact that most of our kids missed out at least somewhat socially and experientially this past year, some of our kids may have even struggled academically and have fallen behind in coursework.

Add to all of this the things that our kids may have simultaneously had in overabundance this past year . . . like stress, and anxiety, and uncertainty, and screens . . . and the pressure is really on for summer 2021!

But what do we want our summer itinerary to look like exactly?

Maybe there is a week or two of summer camp. Perhaps a week at Grandma’s. Some beach days. A family vacation. A few lazy days. But then what? How do we want to spend our summer days with our kids this year? What do we want to have to show at summer’s end? What’s our action plan? Our vision? Our creed?

Load up on fun and unload anxiety?

Recover academic loss, and uncover a true love for learning?

Unplug from the world and connect as a family?

Help our child gain practical-life skills and build their self-confidence?

Explore, experiment, and experience with our kids all summer long?

Emrace being wild and free?

Our exact goals may vary, but I think most of us parents are singing just about the same tune these days: LET’S MAKE SUMMER GREAT AGAIN! 😛

We just have to decide . . . um . . . what exactly we’re doing! No biggie, right? Whether you are feeling uninspired in regards to summer plans, or whether you are feeling overwhelmed by too many options and frozen by some serious summer FOMO, this guide is for you . . . and me! (This guide is your guide, this guide is my guide, from California, to the New York Islands . . .)

Today’s post is sort of a tasting menu . . . a summer charcuterie if you will. I’ve laid out seven of our favorite Summer Styles for 2021 and included just a quick glance at each one to whet your appetite and get your creative juices flowing. Throughout the month, I will be posting specifically on each of the summer plans outlined below; packing each post with ideas and resources to make your job as enjoyable and effortless as possible! It is summertime after all . . . and the livin’s easy. My goal for each post in this series is to both inspire and equip you with all you need to have a present and prosperous summer with your kids in whatever style you choose!

I hope you’ll come along with us as we chase down this, our two-for-the-price-of-one summer!

What’s your family’s Summer Style for 2021?

How to use this guide to find your family’s summer style:

1.) Decide how much time you can / would like to devote to scolastic summer activities.

2.) Identify your TARGET SUMMER GOALS:

☀️ = get outside as much as possible, embracing a healthy, active lifestyle

❤️ = inspire a true love for learning

✔️ = catch my child up / advance my child academically

🧠 = keep my child engaged and actively learning

🛠️ = teach my child practical-life skills and build their self-confidence

😊 = have fun, de-stress, and bond as a family

3.) Browse through our seven selected summer style teasers below. Which descriptions resonate with you? Which images inspire you? Which options fit within your time frame? Which styles address your target summer goals? (just look for the corresponding icons below each section’s description!)

4.) Select a summer style or create your family’s own unique fusion!

5.) Stay tuned for a detailed post on each of the summer styles below! All upcoming this month!


~Our Ultimate Summer Read-Aloud Challenge~

*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

This challenge takes “Summer Reading” not only to a whole new level, but brings it into a whole new light as well. Traditional summer reading programs are basically about logging minutes and hours. You know . . . quantity. Our “Ultimate Summer Read-Aloud Challenge” on the other hand is all about quality. Quality books. Quality time. Quality discussion. Also, it’s about LOVE. Love for what you’re reading, and love for who you’re sharing it with. We’re doing three twenty minute windows of read-aloud a day. Yup, just an hour a day! But an hour that will change your child’s relationship with the written word forever.

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 1 hour per day

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ❤️ ✔️ 🧠 😊

~The Unschooled Summer~

*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

There is no better time than summer to give unstructured, spontaneous, self-directed learning a go! Discover for yourself the strange phenomenon of love and learning unleashed the moment you choose to step away from structured lesson plans. This summer, consider letting your child’s inner soul lead you on an unforgettable, wild and free adventure!

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 3 hours per day unstructured learning/activity time

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ☀️ ❤️ 🧠 🛠️ 😊

~Year-Round School (so much better than Summer School)~

*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

If you and your kids find that the school year is too long, but the summer is too boring, you may want to find out why our family has chosen to do year-round school! From a more flexible school schedule, to more regular breaks and breaths, to more consistency and stability all year long, schooling regularly around the calendar may be a welcome change for your family!

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 2+ hours per day learning/activity time

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ✔️ 🧠 😊

~The Soft-Schooled Summer~

*HEY! This two-part series was posted! Check out part one here. Check out part two here.

Also referred to as “Gentle Homeschooling,” the “Soft-Schooled Summer” is more a mindset than an action-plan. Somewhere between the “Unschooled Summer” and “Year-Round School” . . . the “Soft-Schooled Summer” begins with a simple daily schedule, but it maintains ample grace and flexibility for the wiles and whims of the day. It’s a lovely compromise between the traditional lazy summer, marked with the inevitable learning losses, and the rigid, relentless confines of summer school.

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 2 hours+ per day learning/activity time

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ❤️ ✔️ 🧠 😊

~Summer Camp at Home~

*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

Whether your kids will be attending a week of *real* Summer Camp this year or not, you can keep the life-changing magic going all summer long! From epic recreational experiences, to vocational arts & crafts, to inspiring nature adventures, to heritage-rich traditions, Summer Camp has ~Holistic Homeschooling~ written all over it! I can’t think of anything that offers our children a wider variety of experiences, learning opportunities, and good old-fashioned fun!

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 3+ hours per day scheduled experiences and activities

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ☀️ ❤️ 🧠 🛠️ 😊

~Science Camp at Home~

*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

Science comes alive in the summer. From bugs, to beachcombing, to watching the garden grow, summer is the perfect springboard for exploring the scientific wonders of creation with our children! If you are looking for a sneaky way to squeeze in some summer learning, Science Camp at Home may be the perfect solution. And with ready-to-go science units like the ones I will share with you in this upcoming post, Science Camp at Home will be a breeze as well as a blast!

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 1-2 hours per day scheduled experiences and activities

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ☀️ ❤️ ✔️ 🧠 😊


*HEY! This one was posted! To check it out, click here.

Come along with us this summer on a truly transformative journey! We’re taking six weeks to spend some quality time teaching our kids practical-life skills, building independence, inspiring self-confidence, and instilling a deep respect for good, old-fashioned work. Best of all, we’re doing all of the prep and planning for you! Simply tune in each week for everything you need to tackle six selected skill-sets one at a time with your kids! It’s only an hour a day, five days a week, but I assure you it’s effect will be for a lifetime.

TIME REQUIRED: *flexible* ; about 1+ hour per day scheduled skill-building activities

TARGET SUMMER GOALS (see above descriptions): ☀️ ❤️ 🧠 🛠️ 😊

Cheers to a PRESENT & PROSPEROUS summer!

Thanks ever so much for reading!

Love, ~Our Holistic Homeschool~

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