Current Homeschool Loves

I used to be of the school-should-not-start-until-after-labor-day-what-is-wrong-with-you-people persuasion, but this year, we are starting school on August 20th.  I just wanted to give us a little more wiggle room.  That means our first day of school is a mere three weeks away, as of the typing of this post.  While I'm intending on doing a post about my curriculum picks for 2nd grade, right now I have my hands full trying to find pockets of time to get everything organized and finalized for the year!

So, I thought I'd just share a few of the resources for homeschool planning that I've been loving lately.

The Lovely Homeschool Course - I snagged this homeschool planning course earlier this year for a great deal, and it has been 100% worth the money.  The course comes with editable PDF files to help you plan out your year.  Last year, with having a baby in the middle of the year, we mostly kept things flexible, which was what we needed then.  But this school year, I was hoping to develop more of a routine.  This course is letting me plan things out while still letting me leave room to be flexible, so it's just what I needed.

Better Together - This is a book written by Pam Barnhill, all about "Morning Time".  If you haven't heard of Morning Time, it's something many homeschool families incorporate into their day.  If you have a homeschool friend, ask them if they do Morning Time, and you'll sound like you know what you're talking about.  Basically it's a time to gather together for Bible reading, singing hymns, memorizing Bible verses, reading books together, or whatever else we want to do.

Morning Time is something I really want to incorporate into our daily routine this year - what I love is that this would be a time for all of my kids to learn something together, even the littlest ones.  As they grow, I think it will be a wonderful tool to connect as a family, even as I have a large range of ages.  This book gives some practical tips for morning time, as well as addressing the "why" of it all, and it's making me excited to get started in a few weeks.

Simply Charlotte Mason - Stay tuned, because a post about my curriculum picks for 2nd grade is coming, but this year we decided to try out a local co-op.  We will meet with other homeschool families once a week, and the little kids will do some activities related to the subjects of literature, history, and science.  It'll be fun social time for all of us.  The downside is that we have to at least kind-of-sort-of keep up with the curriculum they pick.  I have my own curriculum I'll be working through with my kids this year, but we'll also have to go over what we're learning at co-op.

They picked the Middle Ages to study for history this year.  Now, you have to understand that the Middle Ages has never been my personal favorite period of time to learn about, and the curriculum they picked is okay but...well, a little dry.  I'm actually not looking forward to it, and that's a problem for me.  My whole philosophy for elementary-level History education is that if we aren't enjoying it, we aren't doing it right.

Enter Simply Charlotte Mason.  I remembered that they have recommended book lists for every historical era, for every age group, so I checked out their list for 2nd grade level Middle ages, and I am relieved to find some fun supplementary books to add in to our read-aloud rotation that look more interesting to me! If I'm more interested, my kids will be more interested, and we'll all be happy.  Basically, Simply Charlotte Mason is my new go-to for books to make boring subjects interesting.

The Read-Aloud Family - Speaking of booklists, I'm relying pretty heavily on this book when picking read-aloud books for our morning time.  And if you haven't listened to the Read-Aloud Revival Podcast, get yourself over to iTunes and get inspired!

This article about Loop Scheduling - Sometimes I have too many ideas and not enough time.  There are all kinds of books and resources I want to use, but if we tried to use each of these every day, we'd be doing school until dinner time (or later), and that's not reasonable.  When I read about loop scheduling last year, it made so much sense.  I have a whole list of "extras" worked out, things I want to loop through every couple weeks, and I'm really looking forward to incorporating subjects and activities we wouldn't be able to get to otherwise!

This post from my blog friend Elisha about her homeschooling method - Read through the article - basically that peaceful, joyful tone that Elisha is hitting is my goal for our homeschool, no matter what method/curriculum we are using!

That's all I have for now, stay tuned for a curriculum post coming up...sometime soon!

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Amanda said...

Did we become homeschooling doppelgangers over the summer? Morning time, Charlotte Mason, loop scheduling...we are on the same wavelength, sister! I am LOVING morning time as a peaceful wake to wake up our brains and get our days started!

Laura Darling said...

I want to go to your school! :)

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