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Planning for an upcoming school year can seem so daunting and overwhelming, hence why I’m writing this post. I need to break it down for myself! The best way to buckle down and get it done is to break it down into manageable steps.
Set Goals for Your Children
What specific areas would you like your children to concentrate on? Say you’d like to strengthen reading skills in one child and writing skills in another. This is a good time to jot these goals down so when you go through your curriculum, you can focus your efforts on these areas with your specific children. You can also choose to supplement curriculum in that area to help strengthen that skill. Here are some broader goals for the atmosphere for our upcoming year:
- Focus on Bible and spiritual growth
- Do a little more hands on
- Open the whole day to the possibility of learning (rather then segregating parts of it)
- Make learning a bit more lighthearted and less drudgery
Choose the Best Curriculum
Because I have many children with different learning styles and needs, my selections of curricula are very eclectic. We tend to lean toward the Charlotte Mason style, with a Classical twist.
In previous years, we have done Tapestry of Grace, and while still a very good, solid curriculum, I needed a change and something a little more exciting for my boys.
Next Monday, during the Not Back to Homeschool Hop, I will share all the specifics with you.
Don’t have a big budget? Thats OK, too! There are lots of cheap and free resources out there to help you educate your child. I recommend checking out Free Homeschool Deals to start.
Don’t know what curriculum to choose? My advice is to allow others to recommend something. Check out blogger reviews or ask your homeschool group, whether it’s local or online. Write down a few ideas and do some research. Choose something that will match your child’s personality.
Map Out Lessons
Get a good planner, such as Debra Bell’s Ultimate Homeschool Planner (my favorite!) or if you prefer an electronic planner where you can type in and print it out, you can purchase this fantastic planner that grows with you. Purchase it once and use it every year!
I sit down and map out the lessons for each child. They will all be a little different and vary in quantity. In the past, I have planned out an entire year, entire quarters, entire months, gone down to weeks, and even a day at a time. Plan out as much in advance as what works for you and your family.
Update the Schedule
Tweak your schedule to meet the needs of your children’s learning capacities. My older children can take in more then my younger children. So I need to adjust my schedule to reflect that. My younger children will also require more one-on-one time. I need to be sure I make myself available to them in a larger capacity as well.