Since it's the middle of the traditional school year, I thought I would take some time to see how our homeschooling in reality compared to the plans that I made this summer. The following was my plan. In bold face is what we really did.
Here is my plan for the coming "school" year:
8:00 - 8:30 Get up! Ha, Ha I tried I really did, but usually it was more like 9am. I know, I know. Don't hate me because I am a lazy homeschoolin' mama!
note: I am a night owl, so this is sometimes hard for me. The girls get usually get up around this time. Sometimes they are up earlier, sometimes later. They are pretty self sufficient in the mornings, so I don't have to get up with them anymore :)
8:30 - 9 Exercise Um, sometimes...
Remind girls to do morning chores: "Have you made your beds, yet?"
9 - 9:30 Shower Yep, I did manage to shower every day :) but not usually at 9am
Remind again:"Did you brush your teach?"
9:30 - 10 Breakfast and computer time for me Ok sometimes the computer time lasted more than a half an hour. Gotta work on that.
Final reminder: "Are you dressed? Did you eat breakfast?"
10:00 School Time (about 1 hour)Well, since I didn't get up at 8am and I usually spend more time on the computer, we started school more like 11am. OK, 12 sometimes, but at least we managed to get to doing some school on the days we were home. Last year if it got to be lunch time before I could get organized, I would call the day a wash and skip doing school.
Each day we will start with one of the following: learn a word from English From the Roots Up, do a Mindbender, learn a spelling rule, read a scripture story, learn a saying from the Core Knowledge Series, etc. We did these for the first month, but then we got busy and these got skipped. I will try to reinstate these as we get back into "real" school mode next week.
Then we will read books and do projects based on our current "topic". Topics include areas of interest from Science, History, Art, and Music. We do one topic at a time. When we are done, we move onto another topic. This works so much better than trying to fit everything into a day or even a week. By the end of the "school" year we seem to have covered a balance of each subject. This we are good at doing. The girls love listening to books and doing projects. We didn't get as far in my list of topics as I thought we would. There were just so many great picture books about countries around the world that it has taken us a while to get through them all. But that is the beauty of homeschooling, right? We can take as much time as we need to explore different topics.
Copywork 3x a week / free writing 1x/week (5 - 10 minutes) Freewriting never happened, but the copywork is going well.
Break until lunch
Lunch around noon
After Lunch, More School (30 - 60 minutes)
Math - every day most days
Spelling/Grammar on alternating days as often as we had time, but got cut if we were busy.
Phonics for 4 year old. Um, not often, just when she asked. When we decided that the older girls would go to OPTIONS on Tuesdays, I planned to work with Arwen while they were gone, but then ended up working in the OPTIONS child care, so that plan when out the window. Gotta add that back in, too.
Afternoons - free play Oh, yeah! We're good at free play.
In an effort to encourage independent learning and responsibility for my 9 year old, I plan to make a chart for her to mark when she has done the following: Practice piano 5x a week, typing CD rom 3x a week, and Rosetta Stone Spanish 3x a week, Math computer game 1x a week. Nope, didn't happen. The math game I got wasn't very good. I didn't get the typing Cd rom until November and I never got motivated to set up Rosetta Stone. Sierra did practice her piano though. That should count for something. I do have making the chart on my list of things to do. Kali is taking piano lessons now, too, and wants her own chart.
I plan to take a nature walk or have a poetry tea time at least once a month during the afternoon. Nope, didn't happen. Never, not once... We did go to park day lots. Does that count? And I taught a poetry class at co-op.
We listen to books on CD in the car and I read bedtime stories, sometimes picture books and sometime chapter books. Yep, books on CD are good! And so are bedtime stories.
Dinner around 6pm
Clean up Rooms starting around 7:30 or 8pm depending on if it is bath night.
8:30pm Bedtime Stories Most nights. We had to skip it if the girls took too long to clean up their rooms or we had evening activities.
Bed time 9pm
Younger girls can read in bed until 9:30
Oldest can read until 10pm.
I usually go to sleep around midnight and then we get up and start all over again...
Note: We are involved in a co-op that meets on Wednesdays, so this is our M, T, Th, F schedule. Also, we have a Park Day on Fridays, so we will need to get any school work done by noon on Fridays if we want to go to Park Day.
So, not too bad. There are a few things that I let slide that I would like to add back into our schedule and others like the nature walk and poetry tea that we just don't have time for since we are doing co-op and OPTIONS. Maybe next year...