Tuesday, December 01, 2015

The Homeschool Schedule

People are always curious about how homeschoolers organize their day. Is it free form, doing whatever the child wants (i.e. child-led or interest driven learning)? For some it is, this is called unschooling. We don't do that in our home. Others purchase a boxed curriculum for each grade and have school-at-home trying to replicate a public school experience without the crowded classroom. We don't do that at our home. 

What do Kara and the children do? They explore together different methods for learning math, science, English, history, etc. If Kara finds a good science program that suits the children, they keep using it. If the children aren't learning from a particular curriculum, out it goes. If the children express an interest in learning Spanish (Viva) or cello (Bentley) or trumpet (Jake), then Kara searches out a way for them to follow that interest. The science curriculum requires full participation of the parent, while the math curriculum can be done without any parental help (unless someone gets stuck on a concept). The history curriculum is a taped classroom lecture. Some subjects are studied as a group (history, science) and others are studied individually (math, English, music). 

Sometimes all three children are working on the same individual topic (math) at the same time, but other times they have freedom to choose which topic to tackle first. Kara's new method for scheduling the school day is working really well for her and the children. She puts on the magnetic whiteboard the subjects that will be covered that day. As the children finish a topic, the card is removed letting everyone see that the end of the school day is nearer! This method of daily scheduling is quick, easy, and flexible. When I asked her where she read about it, she said she evolved it herself after trying different scheduling methods in the past. I'm impressed! 

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