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2014-2015 planning thread


Forum: Homeschooling

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  • 1 Post By Frackel

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  #1  
July 23rd, 2014, 01:37 AM
Spider123's Avatar Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 368
What is everybody getting excited about for the coming school year? New curriculum? New classes? Conferences? Co-ops? Park Days? Pretty new plan books and rock bottom prices on pencils?

Inquiring minds want to network.
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  #2  
July 24th, 2014, 08:25 PM
Frackel's Avatar DOh!
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: In my house :p
Posts: 1,288
Haha, well, we plan our year about a year in advance, or, in some cases, 4-6 months in advance. The only stuff I have to buy, right now, is basic school supplies(but who doesn't? lol)

All of our course work is piece-parted together from sources I find on the internet, or things we already have. The library is not a viable option for us, since we live nowhere within walking distance to one. For most of their courses, I lay out the basic work. I get an idea of what they need to know, or should be learning, at the grade level(s) they'll be studying. Once i have the basics, I fine tune them down, add in sub-topics, added extras, and all of the nitty gritty. At this point we have their curriculum pretty well planned out. We are going to do a block schedule of sorts, in that we will take a couple of weeks to a month off here and there. It seems the last couple of years have worked out this way without even trying, and we've been rather successful with it. We have state requirements and local requirements we have to meet, so those are the first things I cover(which is the basic outline). This year we'll also be doing something a little bit different with their subjects, within the block schedule. For instance, our first block will begin and end in August, yes, just one single month. The first block is pretty much review and consists entirely of Language Arts and Math subjects. All of the blocks will include Language Arts and Math, of course, but some blocks will include other subjects. I believe this one will work out best for us, because we are finding our school year nearly over by March every.single.year. That's a bit too early to end the school year, and we're not so fond of spending April and May doing entirely review or trying to piece-part more supplemental stuff in, because we ran out of subjects to cover. I probably could stretch things out more, but the kids seem extremely disinterested in doing so. They're not fond of the slow pace.(another bit of proof as to why no brick and mortar school I've ever come across would fit well with them, lol).

I can break the blocks down here, pardon the length of this post, but, it'll be long.

For reference sake...Alexis is 15-16 in November, she *should be in 10th grade this year, however she is doing 12th grade course work. Alyssia is 13, she *should be in 8th grade this year, she'll be doing 10th grade course work. Leo is 10-11 at the end of August, he *should be in 6th grade this year, he will be doing 7th and 8th grade course work.
*should=the grade they would be in had we stayed within the public school system in our area

First block-August 2014
Alexis
Language Arts-Literature,English
Math-Algebra Review, Trigonometry, Calculus

Alyssia
Language Arts-Literature, English, Composition
Math-Algebra I Review, Algebra II, Geometry

Leo
Language Arts-Literature, English, Composition
Math-Geometry, Algebra

Second Block-October 1

Alexis
Language Arts-Literature, English, Poetry
Math-Trigonometry, Calculus
History-World
Science-Biology, Chemistry

Alyssia
Language Arts-Literature(hers includes poetry), English, Composition
Math-Algebra II
History-World, US
Science-Biology, Chemistry

Leo
Language Arts-Literature, English, Composition
Math-Algebra, Geometry
History-World, US
Science-Biology, Chemistry

Third Block- January 12

Alexis
Language Arts-Literature, English
Math-Calculus, Trigonometry, more Algebra review
History-US
Science-Geology, undecided(they will pick another topic)

Alyssia
Language Arts-Literature, English
Math-Algebra II
History-World
Science-Geology, undecided

Leo
Language Arts-Literature, English, Poetry
Math-Geometry, Algebra
History-World
Science-Geology, undecided

In addition to these, which are set in stone(minus the undecided Science) they will also have these subjects which are not fully planned out, but will be incorporated when and where necessary...
P.E
Music- this is something incorporated into every day, how much and what they learn, will vary
Home Ec- again, not actually a course, but incorporated daily
Foreign Language-Spanish is the one chosen, but it won't be a full course like most as they have already taken Spanish. This is more for filler purposes and we'll be focusing far less on the more tradition and formal Spanish. Instead, we will focus on different dialects, slang terms, etc.. that are actually useful in daily conversation.
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  #3  
July 27th, 2014, 04:13 PM
Spider123's Avatar Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2013
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You're amazing, Michelle; I wanna be you when I grow up.



Kindy isn't mandatory in my state, so this will technically be my first year homeschooling or else my 18th. It makes my head hurt to think about it, though, so I try not to.

My health has tanked so I'm having to let go of a lot of grandiose toddler parent fantasies and think about what I can realistically accomplish in a day or let go of without beating myself up over it.

I don't remember a lot about the primary years with my olders because I was going through a lot of marital/coparenting issues that I'd just as soon forget. I don't remember planning the year in advance other than reading reviews and skipping meals to pay for curriculum.

I remember and miss my 4AM-8AM mommy time and planning time that enabled me to enjoy staying three weeks ahead of my kids in all their lessons and make sure I had all the materials necessary for hands on stuff.

Except for Liquid Laundry Starch. I never did find Liquid Laundry Starch, even after many, many days of canceling school to drive all over the state looking for it. I think I have PTSD about Liquid Laundry Starch.

I also didn't appreciate the all weekend every weekend free babysitting, since dxh wasn't the slightest bit dear back then and the kids always came back with bad attittudes that pretty much ruined Monday as far as learning anything was concerned.

It's still an adjustment not having the planning time. I bought a lot of the latest and greatest used and ILL'd more of it last year, but somewhere last spring I had a huge paradigm shift and decided to use the "souvenirs" of homeschooling in the '90s and '00s that I had left over or fished out of the dollar bin instead because....well...I like them better.

So my tentative Fall lineup looks something like this, even though it STILL feels like way too much:

Reading: read alouds in the morning before screen time/chore time and at bedtime, Ball-Stick-Bird, ETC 2, selected games from Ruth Beechik's 3Rs book and Peggy Kaye's Games For Reading

'Riting: HWT redshirted because of fine motor co-ordination delay that runs in my family and also general philosophical disagreement with the current public school fad (Goals 2000 or whateverthebleep they call it now), ds wants to do dictation, some sort of creative writing even if it's just me scribing, and Mad Libs

'Rithmetic: Saxon 1, Life of Fred from the library, and I've got a zillion games based math books we could use too, I just haven't had a chance to pick through them and plan yet.

Everything else: secularize and hack the poop out of the '89 edition of Konos I

I have no interest whatsoever in buying more stuff! We're drowning in stuff, what I need is more time!



Who's next?
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  #4  
July 29th, 2014, 12:52 AM
Frackel's Avatar DOh!
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Location: In my house :p
Posts: 1,288
I can completely understand how you feel. My childrens'...erm....father, has absolutely no interest in their upbringing, especially their education. We have a rather interesting situation in this house though. Those stresses can be, well, awful, to deal with.

Insomnia is the main thing I can blame my excessive planning ahead of time on. Otherwise, we tend to fly by the seat of our pants. That's actually why September is an off month. The kids will be with my mother while I am out of town for three weeks. It's just easier to let them take a vacation, since I never quite know when these trips will pop up. I just had one back in April/May as well.

I'm one of those, oh, I'll just go ahead and say it, cheapies, who refuses to pay for curriculum. It's not so much that I'm cheap(though I an extremely frugal), it's merely that I believe education doesn't need to cost an arm and a leg. That coming from someone who is also currently enrolled in college herself and understands that most folks don't seem to share her opinion on that matter.(can we say student loans...oh, yes, we can, and we don't like them either)

I love the idea of using older materials, personally. I am not a fan of newer stuff, most especially not newer handwriting. Although I agree that standards need to be set, for most public schools anyway, I don't agree with how they are set, or met, but I suppose that's a discussion for a different day...and likely a different forum. My opinion on the matter isn't often taken as kindly as it's given, since I apply it to far more than public schools

There is another reason why I prepare ahead of time though, it's not so that we can be prepared, but rather so I can meet the anal retentive requirements our school board and state put forth. Although the state isn't too bad(though still not very welcoming), our local school district is horrendous and beyond...I'll be nice...they take it above and beyond simple scrutiny. They're just awful, to say the least. Most people rarely, if ever, have to deal with a local district as well as their state/area. We, on the other hand, are not that lucky. I think they're just angry that in the last 3 years time, they've lost 350+ students to either homeschooling, or other nearby districts(that doesn't include families that have moved, just those who have yanked kids out). Just in our area alone the homeschool population has grown tremendously. When we first began in 2010 there were maybe 3-5 other families within a 5-10 mile radius. Now, there is easily 50-60, but that does include a few who send their kids to the schools for specific classes. I won't do that, because I hate this district, and I'm not making my kiddos walk 2+ miles to school for an hour or two a day or two a week, lol.

I really love homeschooling, as do my children, it has been such an amazing experience for all four of us. I really do wish we had decided to begin at a younger age, though. I say we, because my children were the ones who made the final decision. I'm an odd ball and let them have most of the say when it comes to their educational path. I just guide, support, encourage and help them. It's ultimately their path, though.

Younger ages are so much fun, structure isn't even needed(unless someone wants it). Learning through play is so much easier when you start at a younger age
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