Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Homeschool Planning 2013-2014 Part I

Dear Lord, is it really that time of year again?  We are wrapping up the current “school year'’ and that means we must plan out the next one.  Ack, ick, and ugh.  Best to approach this like getting into a cold pool…just dive on in, honey.  I’m going to first review all the resources we used for this year and decide what worked, what bombed and what I completely forgot I had.  Sadly, that happens more than I like to admit.

Math:  Both boys started off with the appropriate level of Math Mammoth, and worked together on the Clock and Money workbooks.  We are finishing off the year with Abeka.  Math Mammoth is great, and I would use it again, it’s just that there are too many levels and subjects.  With Abeka there is one book covering a whole year in an orderly fashion.

Language Arts:  Ds3 (12yo 6th grade) has been following a free program I found online, Scott Foresman Grade Six Grammar and Reading.  It has been just what we needed, a simple approach to grammar and how to use it in writing.  I bought First Language Lessons and All About Spelling for ds4 (8yo 2nd/3rd grade) and regret both.  We did a few of the FLL lessons and enjoyed them, but they are SUPER repetitive and slow.  I never even did one lesson with ABS.  Too complicated!  Index cards, little letter magnets, too much effort and learning on my part.  I learned that ds4 did great just listening in on ds3’s lessons.  Also used a word a day vocabulary program.

Geography:  I bought Trail Guide to World Geography and the companion workbook for both boys to use.  We got off to a late start with this as it is not terribly user friendly.  I seriously couldn’t figure out how to plan our days and how to set up the notebook at first, but now we are in a good groove and really enjoy the series.  (This is the one I forgot I had lol.  Fortunately, the lady who owns the site gave me a refund when I purchased it the second time.)

History:  Confession time.  We did a few lessons to continue on with our SOTW series (book 2) but when our lives got a little hairy and I had to pare down the subjects I covered, history was dumped.  I had the chance to pick back up with it earlier this year, but honestly we are all bored with the curriculum and the subject matter.  It’s time to move on.  Since it was an election year we did do a unit on elections and one on the Olympics.

Reading:  As always, I pick several age appropriate classic books to read to the boys and we have casual discussion based lessons based on the books.  I let the boys pick the last few selections themselves (Robin Hood and My Side of the Mountain) to round out the year.

Science:  I had planned on doing a few themed units instead of following a prescribed curriculum.  We did cover weather, dinosaurs and magnets but I did not plan ahead enough and when life got tough, science was one of the subjects we dropped for a while.  I will plan more in advance this time.

PE:  I purchased Family Time Fitness Basketball and we did about 10 of the lessons.  It’s okay but still not the thing I’m looking for in  a PE program.

I think despite the trials and tribulations of the past year, we had a pretty good homeschooling season.  Time now to prepare for the next stage.

1 comment:

  1. I am doing this now except I have one boy in 1st grade and a girl in Pre-K, K and a toddler and a baby. Homeschooling is fun even though I use up every spare moment on it. WELL except Facebook and Pinterest. 0:) I like your blog name.


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