Copywork for homeschooling

How does copywork help to increase knowledge and skill?  What is copywork?

This is a fantastic tool for teaching in all subject areas.  Most people learn best by doing and repeating tasks, so at first glance copywork is merely a way to improve penmanship.  But look a little deeper and it's more than that.  And hundreds of thousands of homeschoolers are using copywork as their base for developing their own "curriculum".

As children are exposed to great works of literature, you can have them copy specific passages into a notebook.  They will remember the passage more easily by writing it than by hearing it or reading it once through.  They begin to understand the proper flow of English grammar, punctuation, vocabulary usage, and even the creative writing process.

For social studies, they can copy passages from historical documents and really get to know them well – such as the Constitution or other founding charters that were written.

For science, don't go out and buy fancy copies of the periodic table of elements.  Have your children create their own copy. 

Many homeschool parents have revealed that learning is best done by doing.  And by teaching.  Teachers of all kinds know that teaching helps them to grow and learn much more than anything they studied in college.  So, have your children re-teach back to you what they copied down.  This is very effective for math or technical subjects.  They can copy the example section or  "how to" section at the beginning of a math chapter.  This is so much more effective than merely reading it and trying to comprehend the instruction.

After they have retaught what they copied, now you can take the learning even further by having them take the copywork and turn it into something that is in their own words.  Now, they are writing!

How much copywork should your child do each day?  Most homeschoolers suggest no more than 15-20 minutes.  So be sure that you are not asking your child to copy a novel.  Just one passage from the book or text will do. 

Another term for copywork is notebooking.  The Notebooking Nook has a ton of great freebies to help you get started in copywork.  http://www.notebookingnook.com/

What do you use copywork for?

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