Friday, August 10, 2012

Planning {Without Planning}

As the month of September draws ever nearer, I find my thoughts turning to curriculum and planning.  Only, what do you do when you don't follow a plan very well at all?  In fact, I am a planning failure.  I have planned out whole school years gleefully, but then the rigidity of the plan sabotages me. Scheduling out my days leaves me feeling suffocated instead of motivated!

We are definitely interest led in our learning.  And so this year, this third year of homeschooling, I am going to embrace this unique learning style rather than struggle against it!

I read an inspiring blog post about recording versus planning and I decided to adopt that mindset for myself too.  There won't be any lessons plans...eeek!!!  I will be recording what we have learned each day in a simple notebook.

So without further ado, the school year plan {without planning}:

Bible:  As a good friend of mine observed, Bible shouldn't be something that is relegated to just school.  We want to instill a lifelong love of the Word in our children, so we will be reading and observing the scriptures each day of the week.  I want to have at least one day of the week that we do a study together as a family. We will be focusing on practical application in our lives and memorization.

Math:  I have yet to find a suitable math curriculum for my two boys.  Mr. I (age 8) loves math and is quite proficient.  Mr. J (age 9) struggles a little in math and doesn't enjoy it as much.  I want to find a curriculum that I can do with both of them but allows them to learn at their own pace.  Is that too much to ask for? ;)

Language Arts:  We will be doing one lesson of Write Shop a week as most of our writing will be utilized with notebooking.  Reading will be done in large volumes because our history curriculum is largely based on reading well-written historically accurate literature.  And simply because the our family loves to read! ;)

History & Geography:  This year we are trying out TruthQuest History and we are loving it!  We will be reading wonderful accounts of real history regarding the United States' early history.  Currently we are studying the Revolutionary War (as per my children's request). Geography is a natural partner with history,  and so we will be learning about the United States primarily, but American history is wrapped up in European geography too!  

Spanish:  Even though Papa is completely fluent in Spanish, our children are not.  And I am only conversant.  So we will be using Hooked on Spanish to learn more!  This particular program is geared towards the younger set.  We might surpass that learning level quickly so I will have to be researching where to go from here!

Science:  This is our most favorite subject as a family.  Science creeps into casual discussions all the time, so I won't be putting a huge focus on this one.  We are raising ducks and starting a garden, so I figure those practical applications will keep us busy for a while. ;)  Astronomy is also a favorite of ours, so we will be sure to include some of the starry heavens in our studies too.

Art:  See the Light caught my eye recently.  Papa and I are blessed to have extremely artistic children (we run out of pens and paper ALL the time).  So I haven't focused on art in the past years.  But I want to cultivate this unique gifting in my children and to teach them new art techniques and concepts.  See the Light is done from a Christian perspective, which I love!  And she makes it simple and approachable for those of us who are not Da Vinci's by nature. ;)

So that about wraps up my plans {without planning}!  I am excited to see what we learn this year and how this new learning style meshes with our family.

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