In today’s modern, Amazon Prime, on-demand society we’ve grown accustomed to having virtually any good or commodity delivered to our homes with just a swipe. This level of convenience shelters the consumer from the realities of production, supply, distribution, and the quantity of work that goes into getting these products to us. I feel it’s important to understand, especially for our children, that meat doesn’t come from the back of a grocery store. That carrots and potatoes grow in the dirt and human hands picked every tomato we eat. That every blueberry, strawberry, apple, mango, peach, ect is kissed by a bee as a flower.
There is something vaguely romantic, at least in the platonic sense, of living off the land, raising your own food, surviving on your own. Our ancestors called it living
While we certainly do not live on a huge farm and live self-sufficiently,(and I use and love Amazon Prime for many things) we have been blessed with a few acres on which to create our own small ‘homestead’ and we often use the land and the skills to help in our homeschool. This year I’m planning to have a monthly post that discusses some aspect of our experience and how we are using it to support our homeschool goals.
Over the course of the year I’ll talk about our chickens, 4-H livestock projects, gardening, canning and other endeavors. We believe that these activities benefit our family not only in the obvious tangible ways like eggs and fresh produce. They provide our children with opportunities to better understand the world around them and the science behind how things grow. They understand where their food comes from and the sacrifices made to provide the food that is on the table. They are learning responsibility and dedication. My son has learned business skills as he sells his extra eggs to friends and family. There are so many things to learn by being hands on and providing for our family.
One of our other adventures that has been a learning process for all of us is bee keeping. I’ll talk about why we chose bee keeping, how it helps our homestead, our family, and our schooling. I’ve seen my son really engage in the bee keeping and take such great responsibility for tending the hives and helping with honey extraction.
In addition to our outside ‘homesteading’, I’ll talk a little about the way we use cooking and handicrafts like weaving to add to our lives and our schooling. My daughter just received a loom for Christmas and is working on her new skills and anxious to contribute some great things to our home.
Each of these topics are simple ways which we hope to instill a fundamental understanding of the ‘work’ that goes into our convenience based lives. If you are reading this and thinking that it all sounds great but you don’t have enough land or time I want to encourage you to keep reading the posts. Each month I’ll include simple ways to incorporate some of these ideas even if you do not have land or lots of time. I learned the hard way that it is much better to start small and add one thing at a time so that you do not get overwhelmed. One of our favorite resources is 4H and I encourage you to see what is offered in your area.
I look forward to sharing with you and would love to hear what ideas you might have for incorporating homesteading into your homeschool. Share in the comments what you would love to learn more about.
Books and Resources:
Planting Guide (this is the one for my area but your local cooperative extension will have one for your area as well).
Backyard Chickens (this site has a wealth of information about raising chickens)
When you sign up for our free resource library you will get a link and password to the library, we are adding to the library each month with new items. You will also get a bi-weekly newsletter email to keep you up to date on what we have going on.
This post may contain affiliate or referral links. As always I will never recommend a product that I don’t believe in and you will never be charged more for purchasing through our links. It does help pay for the costs associated with the blog.
This is a great FREE challenge to help get some of that energy out inside even during this crazy weather. Lots of new activities and several age levels to choose from. Don’t forget to go ahead and sign up, It starts Sunday!