Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Homeschool Chronicles {the new year}

Homeschool  Chronicles Yesterday I was feeling overwhelmed, Aria was demanding, Liam whiny... it definitely wasn't an ideal first day of school.  But, oh well.  Life happens.  The kids hadn't had enough sleep that night, which apparently, definitely matters.  Good thing we get to try again.  And So Soon, haha.

Here we are at the beginning of a fresh new year, and truly, we're all excited.  The chalkboard is back out with the week's work all laid out in color-coded rows for my little planner's convenience.   Someday I'm sure she'll be doing all the planning herself, with my input, rather than the other way around.  But, for now I still get to sketch the master plan.

How do I plan?  Well, since we do a block system, I begin by mapping out the year's blocks for each of my kids.  Liam (first grade) will alternate months of math with months of language arts.  Aria (third grade) alternates math and history, with language arts and science going all the time.  Some subjects we do as a family and some things are individualized for each kid.  Oh, and December is "project month" where each child gets to choose his or her own focus of study, though it looks like they both want to do a unit study on China.  Sounds good to me!

first day - Homeschool Chronicles

After looking at the big picture - what I want to accomplish each month - I map out our weekly school rhythm.  We do different things on different days (ex.  Liam does handwriting on Monday and phonics on Thursday/Friday).  That probably sound crazy-complicated to some, but I find all the diversity in our schedule, both on a weekly and monthly basis, to be highly energizing.  The kids seem to as well!   Having the schedule posted on the chalk board helps me keep track too, as we get used to our rhythm.

Since inquiring minds want to know, here are the resources we'll be using this year. Remember, we don't use these all at the same time.  No way!  For this family, variety is the spice of life.

as a Family

for Aria (third grade)
for Liam (first grade)

Liam caught is first fishy
Believing it best, we wait until first grade to formally teach reading.  Now Liam and I have started spending time in the afternoon slowly sounding our way through part of a Dr. Seuss book.  It's hard work for the little guy to juggle all those sounds, but his delight when he gets it right is so rewarding for both of us.  I love getting to be a part of those moments!  Aria and I are both super-eager for the day when Liam can enjoy reading to himself, because we know how much he's going to love it.   Yay books!

p.s.  Look who caught his first fish. Not a keeper, but darn cute anyways.


  1. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. I am sorry I could not share a review for the homeschooling course as I was having a baby, but it meant so much to both my husband and myself. Thank you for demonstrating the JOY and EXCITEMENT that teaching your children can bring. Many parents these days can be such downers about school/spending time with their children in general. I love to spend time with mine, and thank you for inspiring a joyful teaching experience (even if there is some whininess/craziness : )!) -Jen Baumgard

  2. I'm so pleased you're doing this series. This will begin my 6th year home schooling, and I've made a couple of changes to my old favorites as a result of researching your curriculum list. Thank you!


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