It’s that time of year again. When a homeschooling mom’s thoughts turn to lesson plans, scheduling, curriculum choices, and keeping the liquor medicine cabinet well stocked with Wine Excedrin.
As I mentioned a couple of days ago, we will be starting back to school next month. We began homeschooling year round a couple of years ago, because I discovered that too much down time for my children = a nervous breakdown by September for me.
Plus I found that everything I was teaching them had a way of draining out of their head if too much time lapsed. Therefore, we will have 4 quarters with 9 weeks per quarter. We’ll work for 9 weeks and take 2 weeks off. And we take all of December and June off.
In years past, I’ve pulled together curriculum that matched my children’s learning styles and interests. Which I think is an awesome way to go. We homeschooling moms have a lot of wonderful curriculum choices and teaching styles at our fingertips.
But for me, especially knowing that I would be adding an entity known as Jensen into the mix, the planning was killing me.
This year I’m going with a curriculum that is all put together for me. My girlfriend Diana turned me on to Accelerated Christian Education. (It has worked wonderfully with her 2 children, as they are both bright and articulate and especially well mannered. I’m just shooting for “articulate”, but a mom can dream.)
Anyhoo. Accelerated Christian Education (A.C.E.) provides all the core curriculum needed, plus testing as a way to keep track of what the kids are actually retaining.
And the wonderful thing is, we will proceed at our own pace. We don’t move on until a concept is mastered. I could have joined Lighthouse Christian Academy as a way to help with record keeping, testing, and advising. But since I’m good at organizing and keeping records, grades, and portfolios, I’m going to wait until Emme gets closer to middle or high school.
We’ll have our core subjects: Math, English, Creative Writing & Literature, Word Building, Science, Social Studies plus some extra Bible thrown in for good measure. I also got the CD-Rom so they can do some of their work on the computer, such as Typing, Math Drills, and Word Building.
Now. How am I going to upsell them on all of this?
My SIL sent me a link to a website that uses a Workbox System. Go check out the link. I think this is brilliant. There are many ways to implement this, and we’re using a set of drawers. I can include their work in each drawer (one for every subject) plus a fun hands-on project when it applies to what they are studying.
I’m still setting the system up, but I found my drawers at Target. They are 12 x 12 and have 7 drawers each. (I got a 3 drawer organizer for Jensen, who will be an official preschooler. Oh Lord help me.)
(These are the 12 x 12 drawers I found at Target. One for Emme and one for Cailey.)
(Implementing the Workbox System Workstrip. I will insert extra activities where the blanks are each day.)
(I’m using crates from Wal•Mart to keep my curriculum organized. My crate (with answer keys) is the hot pink one. Because I’m sassy. Emme’s is black because she’s 9 going on 74. Guess who has the fairy pink?)
(I print up my own journal pages using free downloads from Donna Young’s site. LOVE HER.)
(I made up my own Daily Planning Pages using iWorks on my Mac. Makes me look like I know what I’m doing.)
Also, I found a great website that offers a download file of folder games for Preschool through 4th grade. I think I got the deluxe set for around $30.00. That will provide some fun hands on learning and games.
Because my curriculum is already set up, I’ll have time to pull together fun learning activities to help keep their attention. The premise of the Workbox system is to encourage them to accomplish goals and work more independently. I really think it will help motivate them. And keep me organized.
Okay, your turn. I love hearing about what everyone else is using! If you’re posting your own curriculum roundup, please feel free to post the link on Mr. Linky and then link back here. I’ll leave it open for a week or thereabouts so you can join in.
Or of course you can leave your curriculum roundup in the comments section.
Just remember, if you have the heart and desire to homeschool your children, you only have to stay one day smarter than they are. 😯