Friday, October 24, 2008

Our New Plan

As I promised you yesterday, here is our new homeschooling plan, based on the reality that I cannot read aloud for any lengthy period of time. I can, however, read aloud for short, well-timed periods and I can listen to lots of narrations of independent reading the children have done.

After breakfast, everyone does independent seat work. At this point, I am available for helping, but not for anything too involved if baby is awake. (Our oldest daughter, 14yo, is working almost completely independently doing Sonlight curriculum this year. Of course, I still listen to/read plenty of narrations.)

Independent seat work includes:
  • Math
  • Copywork/Italic Handwriting book
  • Spanish (Rosetta Stone on the computer)
  • Typing (Mavis Beacon on the computer)
If they finish, they can either go off to play for awhile until baby goes for his nap or they can do some independent reading. Currently, I have decided to assign each child 4 books (2 historical and 2 literature) from their corresponding year at AmblesideOnline. They are required to do at least one reading a day (generally a chapter) with, of course, a narration, but often they will do two or more since they like the books so much. Most narrations are just straight oral narrations, but older kids need to do at least 1 written narration/wk. Sometimes, my older daughter will take dictation of a narration while she types, giving her typing and proofreading practice. The narration can then be printed and placed in their Book of Centuries. They are also reading good-quality literature on their own. I love that about is impossible to separate 'school' and non-school time.

As soon as baby goes down for his nap, we drop everything and make a mad dash for the Bible. We are currently reading according to the schedule in Greenleaf Guide to Old Testament History. I read and listen to narrations most of the time. Sometimes the older kids will do a digital scrapbooking narration to include in their Bible portfolio (which is essentially a collection of scrapbook narrations!). We use this program, which we love. Occasionally, we look at a corresponding map or I will assign something for the kids to research in a Bible reference book.

At some point, I will sit down with my almost 5yo and do her math and reading lesson.

We often don't eat lunch until 1-2pm, but most of our must-do work is done at this point. After lunch, we spend 1/2 hour on home blessing (cleaning!) and then, hopefully, do a special activity.
  • Mondays: Art (mostly painting, working through these great online lessons)
  • Tuesdays: Nature walk (using the Outdoor Hour Challenges)
  • Wednesdays: Drawing (doing 'Sketch Tuesday')
  • Thursdays: Tea Time with poetry (where we drink tea and pass around the poetry book, taking turns reading -- we actually do this more than once a week, sometimes)
  • Fridays: We don't necessarily homeschool this day, but are usually in-town running errands/going to appointments
And, that is it. What about you? What does your 'school day' include? How do you arrange your time?


  1. What a beautiful schedule, Christine. It's one thing to aspire to the ideal, but reality is so much different. It looks like you've found a way to keep your home school vibrant, consistent (in the unexpected way that any family is with small children in the mix), and full of grace for yourself and your children.
    I'd love to hear more about your digital scrapbooking narrations. I really can't even picture what that would look like. Maybe a future post?
    Blessings to you in the blogging endeavour.

  2. Thank you, Jennifer! Grace is exactly what I have tried to build into my schedule.

    Doing a future post on digital scrapbooking narrations is a fabulous idea. I will add that to my list of ideas and get to work on it. :)