Tuesday, September 29, 2015

School's In!

I know it has been a while, but we've had a crazy couple of months.  Both of the kids were diagnosed with Lyme Disease this summer, and we've been dealing with all sorts of medications and doctor appointments.  We also finally got our summer vacation in the first week of September.  Oh, well - better late than never!  Anyway, we are now back to "normal" to some degree, and are a few weeks into our homeschool schedule.

It seems to be in vogue this year for people to post pics of their homeschool rooms.  Well, our homeschool room looks suspiciously like our kitchen and living room, so I'll spare you the visuals.  I would like to tell you about the schedule we're using, however.

This year, Rory is in 7th grade and Lily is in 2nd.  Obviously, they have different requirements for math and language arts.  I have found a way to do many of the other subjects together, though.  So each day we have two subjects that we do together.  I tried to figure out a weekly schedule that would cover all of the subjects in a week, but that has never really worked for us.  The problem I have is that some weeks we have to miss a week day and make it up on Saturday, or we only have half a day to work because of an appointment or field trip, or we get really involved in one subject and run out of time for another. 

Enter the "Loop Schedule!"  I figured out at the beginning of the year the subjects we were going to do together, and then figured out approximately how many times we should do each of these subjects in a week.  Then I put them together in a list, which looks like this:
  • Science (Insects)
  • World History
  • Science (Birds)
  • American History
  • Health
  • American History
  • Science (Benjamin Franklin Experiments)
  • American History
So for the first day I schedule the first two items on the list.  If we finish both, I go on to the next two for the next day.  When we reach the end of the list, we start back at the beginning.  This has worked really well so far!  If we only have time for one subject in a day, I simply move the other one onto the next day and go from there.  If we have a regular week, we can finish the list in four days and start again at the beginning.  If we miss a day, we simply continue the list on the next day we have school.  Each of my kids has four different books they are responsible for reading on their own each week, so I scheduled them in a loop also.  We spend around an hour on the together subjects, and then they each spend the time they need on their individual reading, math, writing, piano practice, etc.  Depending on the day, they may work on some of these things before we work together, or we may start out together and then they work individually.  Either way, they know what needs to be done each day and are getting very good at making sure their own work is completed. 

I hope you enjoyed a little peek into our day!  So here's the obligatory homeschool room picture -
Lily making a birdhouse with Dad in our other "homeschool room," the big outdoors!

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