Planning No More (Kind of)
I used to be an excessive planner. Our school year used to start with charts, schedules, tons of unit study ideas and more. Sure, I probably only did half of the stuff I planned, but it was better than had I not planned (at least, that's what I told myself).
Not this year.
I think the year of no homeschooling relaxed me a little. Okay...it relaxed me a lot (by way of homeschooling, anyway)! That and a majorly busy summer gave me no real motivation to plan for this year. I mean, I would sit down and make all sorts of lists and tentative schedules, but that was about it. All I really knew was that it was going to be all about my boys!
This year we're keeping it simple, more unscheduled (i.e. not many outside of home classes & such), and interest-led. Of course, when you look at the following schedule it may look pretty scheduled to some, I'm not an unschooler by any means, but it's more like a structure than a schedule.
How does it look this year?
family scripture study, breakfast, and send older kids off to school
cleaning time (chosen daily by what looks like the greatest need)
own studies/Mom works with E
family learning time/field trips/errands
For the boys' own studies we just have a list of things they need to do in the reading, writing & math departments. They get to put beads in their jars for whatever they accomplish on the list each day. Bottom line: prize box; Middle line: $1 toy or ice cream; Top: date with parent, stay up 1/2 hour later, or more computer time.
For family learning time I'm using quirky holidays, science and history. I'm also going with what the boys want to learn. So, we have a place on our kitchen white board where they can add their interests as they see or learn things they want to know more about. At the beginning of the month I'm writing up a tentative plan for each week, but only really planning things out the week before (i.e. printing pages, getting supplies, etc). I think this will save me a lot of money in the end, too, because I'd plan things for months in advance, buy the stuff and then never get to it.
Anyway, I'm feeling quite free this year! One week down, we'll see how time goes.
My main goal, really?
Teach the boys to be hard working gentlemen!