How do you do a unit study?
I personally come up with a topic I want to cover. I write 8-10 objectives I want the kids to be able to do surrounding the topic. Then I find something to help accomplish those goals in each of the core subjects.
For example: Topic: Plants. Objectives: The student will be able to 1) explain the life cycle of a plant, 2) disect a seed and label the parts, 3) Explain the differences between a plant cell and an animal cell. Then I find 4-5 experiments for the kids to grow a seedling, actually disect a seed, create a plant cell, etc. Then find 2-3 books about plant life and seeds for informational reading. Find a book like Johny Appleseed or Priscilla and the Hollyhocks for our language arts lessons. Use seeds to create tables and graphs in math class. Look at the history of apples and orcharding in America. Center all of our learning in all of our subjects for about 1-2 weeks.
I'm not really that big on full unit studies, but we have done a couple of them over the years.
Oh and BTW, doesn't sound stupid at all! :-)
Personally, I have curriculum materials that we use for the jist of school. So I don't have experience of doing unit studies for the main portion of school.
However, my kids do get to choose something that they personally want to learn and do a unit study of. They start a new one every other month. They can go as indepth as they wish to go, and use as many resources as they wish. I have never really had to set any objectives for them. They have to present a culmination project at the end of it - pizza night.
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