Not a Homeschool School Plan

Miss me?  It’s been a busy summer, but I’m back!

As most people who either know me or have been following my blogs for awhile know – we are not homeschoolers.  We’re proud public schoolers who are lucky enough to have a great public school option full of dedicated teachers, opportunities and good community support.  However, I don’t believe that I get to pack up my kid and forget about their education 180 days of the year.  I still love more classical approaches to education like Charlotte Mason and general Classical education and I do wish I had a classical program to choose from locally, but you make do with what you have.  I don’t believe any school is perfect, but I also don’t believe school is meant to stand on it’s own.  School and home, in my mind, are symbiotic and one needs to support the other.  I send my kids to get instruction in the basics – math, reading, writing, along with some music, art and physical exercise thrown in.  If I want more for my kids, I need to work to provide it.  After all – I’ve done the math; my kids will spend in a year: 6 months sleeping, 2 months at school and 4 months at home.  There’s plenty of time to work in other experiences and subjects without over burdening them.

I’m not strict – my kids don’t come home to four more hours of course work at night.  I just use other available resources to help guide our interests through the year.  For instance, I really like the Classical approach to history so I use books compiled from various homeschool programs to guide our library selections.  I appreciate Charlotte Mason’s “Living Book” philosophy and that guides my read aloud and audiobook selections.  It’s not oppressive, it’s just intentional:  intentional inspired learning.

This is a year I’ve been waiting for.  My son is starting 1st grade which is when most classical programs really start introducing history, so I’ve already started bringing home library books about early civilizations.

Using various curriculums and book lists for inspiration this is what I’ve got my eye set on this year:

History:

  • Using various homeschool booklists to inspire our library selection – focusing on introducing early history (Egyptians, Rome, Greece, Celts, Vikings and hopefully find more on Asian, Pacific and early American history)
  • Finally getting into the Story of the World Cd’s I bought last year (long story short we barely used them because the car we ended up using most often doesn’t have a cd player – our new van does though!)  I’m also considering get it as a Kindle book to help us get through it too.

Read Alouds:

Supplementing:

  • Star Wars workbooks:  Since he’s reading chapter books I skipped the reading one, but got us Handwriting and Math Skills.

  • Bedtime Math: okay, a big part of me feels this is ridiculously, but the kid loves these books so why not!


Nature Study:

  • He’s starting to gain my love of amature birding so I’m hoping to set up more feeders and keep tracking our spotting.  It’s nice to have something to do together as a hobby.  We use these cards to track our spots.

Music:

  • I recently invested in a turntable so we can go through my old records and explore some new oldies.  I saw on an Instagram post a little while ago about records being a fun way to do music, plus being so cheap in thrift stores to make in an affordable quirk.

That’s really it for now, even though it might seem like a lot it’s just supplements – things to do when he’s on a roll and things to have on hand if we struggle or need a little inspiration.

6 thoughts on “Not a Homeschool School Plan

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  1. Love this! Thanks for sharing. Would love to hear more about how you use the bird cards. They’ve been on my Amazon wishlist forever but I feel like they’d get tossed aside and forgotten quickly.

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  2. Hi! I am usually a quiet reader of your blog, but I was wondering if you’d be able to give some suggestions about the homeschool booklists that you used, and the early history books you might be getting from the library? We are also proud public schoolers (here in Canada), but I also work hard to ensure that we have a lot of fun, educational material here at home to fill in the gaps.
    Thanks so much!

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  3. I just found your blog and love it! This post in particular is great! As a Catholic mom, I’m starting too feel a lot of pressure from friends/family to homeschool, but I feel my four-year- old would love to go to school. Why did you decide to not homeschool? Thank you!

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    1. Lots of reasons, from being in a great school district(great academics, not bad class size, good amounts of recess but in an area where we don’t have bizarre sex ed requirements or obvious anti religion bias to worry about – my kids “regular” public elementary has a chess club, a veggie and butterfly garden and a “mileage” program to encourage physical activity), to work schedules to personal temperaments of me and my son. I love supplementing his education and encouraging his interests outside of school, but I’m not meant to teach him at least in the younger grades. We do awesome doing homework together at night and reading together and doing all these other things that I don’t think we’d get to do if I had to be his primary educator because we’d be burnt out from doing the rest (And I’m not the unschooling type so it’s be syllabi and workbooks in my homeschool). I still feel I’m my kids primary educator in that Biblical sense, but I don’t feel that means I need to be there only teacher. And, to be honest, while some kids really do need individualized attention, mine doesn’t and is learning a lot by learning to adapt to the other learners in the class, their speeds, their challenges, not getting to do exactly what he wants or solely what interests him (my 1st grade kid is reading at a 3rd grade level, but is learning patience when he works with his BFF who’s a struggling reader or his other friend who isn’t a native English speaker, etc.). I have no interest in raising a cog in a machine, but I see the benefits of a classroom in that way too.

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