Best Educational YouTube Channels for Homeschoolers

Best Educational YouTube Channels for Homeschoolers

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Over the last few years, YouTube has exploded with content made by experts in their field. Some of them are very talented at sharing concepts in creative ways. These channels are the reason it’s fun to make a YouTube Playlist for your students. Today’s post is all about the Best Educational YouTube Channels for Homeschoolers.

As always with internet content, previewing is a good idea. While many of these vloggers have great things to share, you want to be sure it is right for your family.

Math Channels on YouTube

Videos are a great way to enjoy math and these YouTube videographers have some fabulous content for us. Apart from curriculum math, I love the way these channels make us think about math. You’ll find everything from tutorials and instruction to current events and new ways to think about mathematical concepts.

  • ViHart– You may know her from Kahn Academy videos, but she has a style all her own. She has some fast paced videos which are sure to keep your attention and keep you thinking.
  • Numberphile– Just like the name suggests, this guy loves numbers and so will you after spending some time here.
  • Computerphile– A channel about all things computers. I know our youngest would adore this channel!
  • Kahn Academy– There’s a tutorial for everyone here! Math, science, languages, etc. These are individual videos, but on their website you can take courses as well. Our youngest enjoys the courses on computer science.
  • WowMath– This is a harder core lesson channel for high school math. Calculus anyone?
  • Professor Leonard– Another channel dedicated to math education.

This video from ViHart is all about the hexaflexagon. After watching it, our daughter made a bunch of them. Try it!

YouTube Science Channels

Science is an easy video topic with many science enthusiasts making contributions. If you have a favorite not listed here, please share it with us!

    • Mythbusters– Who doesn’t love this fun concept of busting or proving common conceptions (or misconceptions) in the physical world?
    • Vsauce– This guy tackles fun science questions like, “What is the speed of dark?”.
    • MinutePhysics– Fun physics videos that teach us why things are the way they are in the world around us
    • Periodic Videos– These are fun videos based on elements in the Periodic Table of the Elements.
    • SciShow– Fun videos on science concepts with an engaging format.
    • MinuteEarth– A fun look at earth science and conservation concepts
    • Veritasium– An element of truth. A look at science from the angle of misconceptions we may believe.
    • Sixty Symbols– Cool videos on physics and astronomy
    • How It’s Made– Our kids love this show! Now you can view episodes and clips on how everyday objects are made in factories around the world.
    • Cornell Lab of Ornithology– All things birds on this channel. If you are a nature enthusiast, then this is a great place to start.
    • Peterson Field Guides– Add a visual to your birding with these videos
    • BrainCraft– A show about neuroscience. Cool things to learn about our brains and the way they work!
    • ASAPscience– A weekly dose of fun science

Ethan, our 11th grader, suggested this video from VSauce to share with you. It’s a perfect illustration of the fact that many of these YouTube personalities talk about a variety of subjects. Just know that I grouped channels together reasonably well, but you will find these folks stepping out of their niche from time to time. While VSauce is mainly science, this video talks about language and how we use it. This is a fun look at words!

History Content Channels at YouTube

It’s easy to find video web content on historical topics, but it’s nice to have it all in one place. These are a few of our favorites when it comes to history and social studies in general. Sometimes you can catch full episodes of shows and other times, it’s only a clip.

  • CrashCourse– This channel has all sorts of subjects including historical and political content.
  • History Channel– You can find clips and full episodes of shows on the The History Channel.
  • Brain Bubble TV– Be smarter in 60 seconds. All kinds of questions and historical topics covered here. Probably other subjects too.
  • Mental Floss– A weekly trivia channel for knowledge buffs!

Tips for Using YouTube in Your Homeschool

Since most of us probably don’t need another reason for our students to sit in front of a screen, what are some ways to use YouTube effectively?

  • Sick days– You know those days when your kids aren’t totally sacked out, but they aren’t up for doing their regular school work? That’s a great day for a YouTube play list on math or science.
  • Traveling– Educational and reasonable when you have long road trips and you’ve played out the alphabet game
  • Waiting Time– I love to pass the time in doctor’s waiting rooms with a good math video. We’ve had quite a year of therapies and dr’s appts and this keeps the kids thinking.
  • Enhancement– Of a concept they are already looking at. Doing geometry in math? Find a fun video on Pi.
  • Inspiration– ViHart is a great artsy math example for our artsy daughter. She loves to watch math doodling videos and give them a whirl. It’s also good for introducing new vocabulary like, “fractals”.
  • Project Ideas– When our kids are working independently on their own projects, they can find help with a simple search.

Tools for Using YouTube in Your Homeschool

So, what do you need to get started using YouTube channels? Families are in different places with technology. Most people have a desktop computer, but not everyone has a mobile device. Here are some ideas:

  • Desktop Computer– There’s nothing wrong with saddling up and watching at the desk.
  • TV– Using a Wii which can access the internet. This is a great choice if you want a lot of people to see the video at once.
  • Tablets– Like iPads and Kindle Fires. If your family does not have a tablet, then I recommend the Kindle Fire. It’s a very economical way to enter the world of tablet computing and it’s a great product for internet consuming!
  • Mobile Apps– If you do have a tablet or a phone, you can use a YouTube App to view your playlists easily. I was even able to add to my playlists on my phone.
  • Playlists– If you want to have the lists of videos made ahead of time, then you can make a playlist. How to Make a YouTube Playlist is a tutorial on how to do just that!

How to Make a YouTube Playlist

Other Technology Posts at Blog, She Wrote

As I have become a user of some savvy tools in our homeschool, I like to share not only our experience but also how others can make use of the same tools. Enjoy some posts on technology in homeschool:

  • Managing the Internet in Your Home– All about how to use your router to filter content along with how to put access controls in place for your family’s devices. My husband Dan did a great job making this accessible to readers.
  • How to Make a YouTube Playlist– In case you missed this link and want to make customized playlists for school subjects.
  • How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool– Tutorials, lessons, and ideas on using this digital globe.
  • How to Homeschool with a Kindle– This page shares with you all my posts using a Kindle (both the reader and the tablet) in your homeschooling. Most people aren’t aware of all the features a Kindle offers. These have been invaluable in our studies.

What are your favorite YouTube channels? Please share them in the comments!

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How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool

How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool

One of my favorite tools on the internet is Google Earth. Whether your students are young or old, they can use it easily and masterfully for tasks. The best part is letting kids explore it on their own and discover places near and far around the earth. This is your guide on How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool.

What is Google Earth?

Google Earth is a program which allows you to see the world virtually in 3D and control where you go with the touch of a mouse. If you don’t already have it on your computer, click the link to download your own copy. Here are just a few of the features of Google Earth your family can explore.

  • View the earth from space and spin it in any direction or orientation.
  • Fly to various locations around the world from where you start- this is one of my personal favorite features. If you start by looking at the state of Vermont and choose to see South Africa, it will fly you up into space and down again into the new country. That’s just fun!
  • Zoom in to see whole geographical areas or zoom in so far you are on the street level- meaning you can see the images of the street itself and see what it’s really like there.
  • Choose overlays for the maps so you can see weather, landmarks, etc
  • Look at pictures people have uploaded of local landmarks, people, places, etc- when you zoom in you’ll see picture icons you can click on. What a great way to take a virtual field trip!

How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool

Google Earth Resources

There are a lot of ideas, tutorials, and helpful tips on using Google Earth. Here are some of the best that I found in my brief search.

  • Google Earth Lessons while perusing some of my homeschooling bookmarks.
  • Google Earth User Manual for Earth Science Teachers – Just look at the table of contents and you’ll see what I mean. Ok…maybe you won’t. The science teacher in me is definitely making plans for this. Curriculum is being written in my head. Instructional gems just effortlessly coming to the surface as I think of how we could use this in our school.
  • Google Earth for Educators– A Google site all about using Google Earth in the classroom. There are classroom resources, tutorials & tips, showcased work, and a spot to connect with other users.
  • Google Earth Lessons from Juicy Geography– This set shows how versatile your lessons can be with Google Earth
  • Lesson Plan Library– from Google Earth for Educators. I didn’t want you to miss this one. Some of these are fabulous and I think it’s a great place for learning what you can do with Google Earth with your own curriculum and lessons.
  • Teaching with Google Earth– A comprehensive look at how to use this tool
  • Google Earth You Tube Channel– The place for video help on Google Earth. I hope they’ll add more here.
  • Google Earth App– If you are an Android user, you can get Google Earth on your phone or tablet.

How to Use Google Earth in Your Homeschool

 

Google Earth Quick Start Activities

Getting started with Google Earth can feel a little intimidating, so I pulled some activities for getting to know this tool easily. You can choose activities for any age student.

  • Google Earth User Guide– Outlines everything you can do with Google Earth
  • 5 Easy Things to Do in Google Earth– Fun activities like looking up your house, touring the world, and viewing recent historical activity in an area
  • Ready to Use Lessons– from Pedagogy in Action. I think it might be worth doing more posts on specific topics using Google Earth. There’s a lot out there!
  • Find Your House– This one is always fascinating for new Google Earth users.
  • Navigate around Town– This is one my younger kids used to love to do. Have them locate your town and find the places you frequent. My youngest used to make a video game out of it by going to “street view” and finding his way to the grocery store and all the other places in town we go to. Fun activity!
  • Physics Lesson Using a Bus Route– For the older kids you can map bus routes with distances and rates and determine speeds using bus route information.
  • Find Ocean Basins & Other Physical Geography Features– Check out the continental shelves surrounding each continent before the ocean gets super deep. River deltas like those of the Amazon, Nile, and Mississippi are interesting from satellite images as well.

Google Earth is a great tool for your homeschool. There’s a wealth of free resources and information on how to use it to your student’s greatest advantage.  Download it today and let your kids enjoy some virtual geography!

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Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

 This post contains affiliate links. Thanks for your support!

Studying the ocean is one of my favorite homeschool teaching topics. There’s such an expanse of material to enjoy. It’s got all sorts of science from physics (waves) to biology and chemistry. The habitat is complex, the animals diverse and amazing, and there are still unsolved mysteries for scientists to tackle. Oceanography was easily my favorite class in graduate school! After all, I was a scientist taking lots of graduate classes in education- of course my favorite class would be my science electives!

Just like there is no shortage of topics to study in oceanography, you’ll be excited to know that the resources available to help you teach it are no less expansive. Today’s post is all about Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool.

Basic Concepts in Oceanography

Oceanography is a wide area of study with many options, but here is a list of the basic concepts a study in oceans might entail. The older your students, the more in depth you can go with the topics. It’s fascinating to go beyond habitat and ocean life and study how oceans behave. Don’t miss out on learning about large scale ocean behaviors like The Coriolis Effect.

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

 

  • Name and Map the Oceans– Basic ocean geography and definition of an ocean
  • Composition of Ocean Water– What’s in sea water and what’s it made of?
  • Ocean Zones– Light determines a lot about how creatures live in the water. Learn about habitats and characteristics at various ocean depths.
  • Animals and Critters– Study animals and plants found in marine habitats.
  • Ocean behavior– currents, waves, and tides
  • Large Scale Phenomena– The Coriolis Effect, winds
  • Beaches– Erosion, barrier islands
  • Navigating the Ocean– How do people get around? What equipment do they use?
  • Ocean Floor– What’s down there? How do you study it? Can you map it?

 

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

Resources for Oceanography Studies

Below are some of our favorite resources on oceanography including curriculum, notebooking materials, and books.
Sea Life Notebook Pages | Harrington Harmonies

  • Sea Life Notebook Pages– These are fun set of pages which cover any sea animal you’d like to study. If you don’t find the one you need, then there are blank pages for you to use. The boys used their Kindles to do some research and jot down facts on their notebook pages. They are working on an animal report for writing.
  • NorthStar Geography– Middle and high school geography curriculum with a section on physical geography including the hydrosphere and oceans.
  • WinterPromise Sea & Sky– Our 4th and 7th graders are working through Sea & Sky this year. There’s a lot of ocean science involved which is fun for adventurous boys.
  • Amanda Bennett Oceans– A four week study of the world’s oceans.
  • Usborne Discovery Books– On various animals
  • Ocean by DK– Stunning pictures and information on oceans
  • Oceans for Every Kid– A Janice VanCleave book with ocean experiments
  • Awesome Ocean Science– An elementary book on ocean science
  • The Ocean Book– Marine activities from an aquatic center
  • Ocean-Opoly– A board game that plays like Monopoly with lots of ocean facts

 

Oceanography for Middle School

Media Options for Oceanography

It’s fun to watch videos about the ocean. Who doesn’t love seeing the creatures from the deep or sharks in their own habitat. The internet is a treasure trove of underwater exploration.

These are just a few examples of the wealth of information and fun videos you can find using YouTube. Do you know how to make a YouTube play list? It’s a great way to line up great videos for your kids for school.

Other Blog, She Wrote Posts Related to Oceanography

This isn’t the first time we’ve encountered the ocean in our studies. Here’s a look back at some recent and not so recent experiences from the past.

With a little time and some basic resources, your family can engage in a comprehensive study of Oceanography.

Geography bundle -- North Star Geography and WonderMaps

 

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