Homeschooling – planning out your days

Right now, Kaia is in school 3 days a week and home schooled two.  Though there are definitely those hair pulling times, we are really enjoying ourselves and looking forward to all the things we can do together.  So, we are actually thinking of home schooling full time.  It’s something we had thought about doing when she was first born, but house building, jobs, life happened and she ended up in a private school.  But, this past summer, when she was out of school, our days flowed so nicely!  We enjoyed each others company, doing projects together, reading together…

Right now, I’m kind of following the private schools curriculum and we cover similar things on her ‘home’ days.  I’m curious, though, how you home schoolers out there plan out your curriculum?  Do you take some time before the ‘school year’ starts and plan what you will go over for the year??  Do you sit down on Sunday night and plan out the week ahead?  I like to plan things, even if the week doesn’t go as planned, so I’d love to hear how you make your lesson plans for your kids?  If you write about it on your blog, please let me know!!

7 thoughts on “Homeschooling – planning out your days

  1. it depends on my time and mood…sometimes i plan ahead (usually the thur before so i have time to request books from the library). other times, we wing it. illinois doesn’t require us to keep records but i do anyway but i’m loose on what i consider ‘school’…sometimes she just wants me to spell out words while she writes them down or wants me to read a bunch of books to her.

    also, while we are driving, we’ll count and play i-spy and other games that can usually count towards our daily lessons too…i try to work on a math lesson every day but the last week, i’ve been printing off review sheets for her to work on.

    i’m really conflicted though because i like the waldorf philosophy but i also like the well trained mind stuff as well…need to work on balancing all that out!

    i try daily to sit down and write what we worked on that day so i can see if we need to work more on something that we’ve been skipping.

    i’m sure as she gets older, this will all change too but for now, it works for us!

  2. we do not homeschool but I wish we could have an option where they attend school 3 days and homeschool the rest. How absolutely wonderful you are able to do just that. It would be so nice to have my children home more during the week and be more involved in their curriculum.
    You are very lucky to have that option. Is it only with a private school or is that an option to be had with public where you are?
    It is nice for them to be in school since not many children of their age live around here. Oh how I so envy those extra days you have with your children.

  3. Farm Chick – It is a wonderful option for us that we are able to have Kaia in school part time. The laws in NC are flexible regarding homeschooling, so this particular school (private) uses it to their advantage and offers a 5 day, 3 day, and 1 day program. If the kids are in part time programs then they are considered home schoolers with supplemental classes. It’s the only school that I know of that does this. We’ve enjoyed it a lot! Not just the flexibility, the the teachers are fabulous and Kaia has really flourished. Unfortunately, it’s expensive. It’s also 30 minutes away, so I’m in the car 2 hours on school days driving back and forth. It’s also very hard to get all our homeschooling into 2 days and coordinate it to their curriculum. We end up spending a lot of time trying to get her into a rhythm that always gets broken as soon as the three school days start again. This past summer, our days flowed so nicely and she really enjoyed herself, but when school began, it all went kaput. I think we will still keep her in the one day/friday school option. That way she can still see her friends, play, do fun projects at the school…

  4. Maria- It was so good to see you earlier this fall. I just found your blog (took me a while to remember what it was called!!). We homeschool Isabella and Andre and love it. We mainly “unschool” and find that there are learning opportunities everywhere that we look. I don’t do any lesson planning…at all.

    We homeschool through the local public school system. They have many enrichment classes (and a core curriculum class for lower elementary, upper elementary, junior high and high school). We also meet with a consultant teacher every month. I have a folder where I keep miscellaneous scraps of paper that look like they qualify as “schoolwork”. As the date of our consultant meeting nears, I gather evidence of learning to bring with me. Each month, I am amazed at how much we have done in all of the scholastic areas (language arts, math, science, social studies, art, music, PE). Someday, I may decide to plan, but for now, this works for us really well.

    Say “hi” to the chickens for us! We miss Kris and Kent’s gang of 8!!

  5. Every single kid I knew growing up who was home schooled was kind of a weirdo. Every single one of them. And not in that aloof, good, “everybody else is messed up so isn’t it a good thing they’re different?” kind of way. More of a terribly socially awkward, “oh man, they’re going to have a miserable, hard time being around people in the world” kind of way. That’s not to say every home schooled kid turns into a weirdo. That’s just my experience. There was also a lot of isolating religious extremism in the mix for all of those kids, so I’m sure that played a role. Still, my totally irrelevant opinion (they’re your kids, raise them however you think is best) is that they will adjust to society better if they have at least part time interaction with other kids. School is a very rough, trying, but (imo) necessary social tempering. It seems like you can take the figurative beating in school or take the beating out in the world when you’re an adult, but I think the longer you wait the harder it is. That being said, teaching them at home at least part time gives you the opportunity to fill in the gaps that are left in public schools. From volunteering with at-risk kids once a week after school, I can tell you that here at least, those gaps are in math and science. I would strongly encourage you to push the envelope with math, chemistry, technology, and physics. Teach Kaia some simple BASIC or other simple programming language. Show them how an electric circuit works. Take apart a small solar panel from a calculator and talk about how it works. How does a car engine work? How is coal fired or nuclear power generated? What is good an bad about that? How do the cells in the heart know to grow to perform heart functions as opposed to skin cells, that know how to perform skin functions, etc.? What causes current to flow in a wire? What is magnetic force? How is it like or different from gravitational force? At least give them the opportunity to really get their feet wet and see if there’s an interest there. I’m fairly certain they won’t get that in public school.

  6. Hey Mark!

    Thanks for your comments. I do appreciate you voicing your concerns!

    It’s interesting that many people assume that kids who are home schooled are socially isolated. That’s very far from the truth (if it’s done right). Yes, kids can be socially awkward if not given the chance to socialize, but around here there are so many opportunities for interaction that you have to hold yourself back so the kids don’t get over loaded. There are group homeschooler field trips, sports clubs (with state leagues), park days, supplementary homeschool (group) classes (including woodworking, electronics, mechanics, etc.), craft clubs, and much more. And we are also very lucky that Kaia’s best friend is also home schooled, so they will be getting together for group lessons occasionally.

    But, as far as being weird… well, I don’t think our kids have a chance. I mean, they like to eat seaweed, they have pet chickens and wooly worms, they know how to use a nail gun, they don’t like Hannah Montana, and they have us as parents (and you as an ‘uncle’)! According to the standard American they are already weird!! :-)

  7. i am socially awkward and i went to public school. my 5 yo is a social butterfly and knows no stranger. she is home schooled.

    i’d say it’s more of the chemical make up than the social setting. :)

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