Recently we’ve been using some youtube and other video sources, to do our homeschool. And surprisingly enough there are some great resources for parents and kids alike out there. So I thought that today I would share some of our favorites. I would say most of them are Elementary age appropriate, but there’s a lot out there if you just go looking for it.
Videos as Learning
We use videos to supplement our learning. My daughter goes to work with me. Most days we manage to get in all our activities (2-3 reading, 1-2 math, and some other special interest). However, some days that just isn’t possible. I may be getting phone calls out the wazoo or have other tasks that I just cannot ignore.
My boss is great for letting me have her at work with me and I definitely appreciate it, but if we don’t do homeschool while we’re here….the evening is a mess. I end up behind with cooking, cleaning, bedtime, and my own self care. None of which is a good plan. So usually, once (sometimes twice) a week we use videos as a part of our curriculum.
Some are dvds like our language learning series. Most are YouTube or amazon prime videos however. While I mostly plan on covering YouTube content here, I will give an honorable mention to a few other sources and shows we commonly use.
Homeschool Pop is a great channel with a ton of content. The creator is constantly adding to what he has as well. He covers animals, history, geography, and much more. His channel has been my absolute favorite for working with her. They are animated, simple, factual, and fairly engaging.
Just the other day we watched a series on civil rights and a few months ago we started watching their 50 states series. The 50 states series features a video for each state sharing a variety of facts and information from state flag and flower to a bit of history behind it.
Alphablocks is a great series for any kiddos trying to learn their phonics and letters. Each character has their letter above their head as a part of their block and when they come together to form a word they sound it out one by one.
It’s great for young learners because its set up like a story. It’s playful, bright, colorful, and full of fun. My 5 year old still enjoys it and we often use it in our language arts program when I’m having a rough day at work. Best of all, she doesn’t even feel like its a part of homeschool.
Number Blocks is just like Alpha blocks but about numbers and basic math. The characters look like those tiny blocks we used to piece together in base ten math at school. I haven’t watched as many of these with her, but what I have seen I like. We have used it a lot to work on skip counting and we used it when she was just learning her base numbers. Just like alpha blocks it is bright and colorful while telling a story.
Cosmic Kids Yoga
Cosmic Kids Yoga is great for an at home PE routine. This wonderfully fun young lady with fanciful backgrounds tells an interactive story to your children. Each pose contributing to the story. It’s great for short attention spans (most of the videos) and for engagement.
Most of the videos are 5-10 minutes long, though she does have a few that are as long as 30 minutes. A good deal of the stories involve made up characters for her own little yoga world. However, occasionally she does specials with the trolls, frozen, and other popular kids media. She also does seasonal activities and some other content. It’s great and best of all its free and fun. I can do it with her and get my exercise on.
PBS has a good deal of educational video content. We love the Wild Krats, Peg + Cat, Dinosaur Train, Word Girl, Daniel Tiger, to name a few. She loves a lot more of them than I do. I do find some of the programming to be not as great as others. For example, in my personal opinion, Sesame Street today, is rather boring. And I’m not a big fan of Nature Cat either. However, all of their shows are educational to some extent whether it is science, morality, math, or other topics. They do have an app for on the go learning as well as many games.
If you already have Amazon Prime, you also have Prime Video. Which contains a number of documentaries. These are probably better for older elementary kids. They are nearly all live action which can be good depending on your kiddo and how long they will sit still. We’ve been watching a number of documentaries about the ocean and dinosaurs the last few months.
I love supplementing our education with videos. When possible we can watch them together and discuss. If not she often comes to me with questions sparking conversations. It also gives me a bit of time to get something else done when I need to and her still get something education out of her tablet time. I prefer that to a whole lot of what is available for childhood entertainment today.
But I do still do my best to limit our video time because the research out there is saying its just not good for their little brains. But I hope this post helps you realize how many free (mostly) video options for supplementing your own homeschool curriculum.by