Sunday, March 16, 2008


I made these weekly schedules for the two middle school boys. The top one is for my YEar 9 son and the second one is for my Year 6 son. (you can click on them to make them bigger).

They are really useful ; having them open in my notebook gives me an "at a glance" survey of the order of the day, and for my boys they are useful in seeing what is to be done.

My Year 6 son particularly likes the way his is laid out to give him a slower-paced hour in the middle of the school day. During this hour he has a snack, takes the little ones outside, and/or does a science or art project. While he is doing this, I can stay alongside the older one while he is working in Algebra.

I never laid out my homeschool by the hour before. I thought it would be too regimented, too much like a school system with bells ringing. But it's not. The "hours" sometimes go on longer or shorter than 60 minutes. That is why I don't have it tied to a clock. We usually start at about 9 am but sometimes it is earlier or later. Sometimes we get done before noon and sometimes it takes the whole four hours. So the "hours" are basically just to give a realistic time frame and some sort of order for the subjects.

I built the schedule around the way my boys were most comfortable doing things. My older one likes to wake up and start right in with the more "mechanical" subjects, then read for a while. Then he is ready for Algebra : ) and then he can face the more open-ended subjects like writing. My other son likes to start with listening to a read aloud, sometimes while drawing or coloring, then have a slow and more "exploration" type hour, then finish up with the more precise "discipline" subjects.

One more thing -- my sixth grader's week is laid out so that if he gets everything done during the week, he gets a light day on Monday -- only the read-alouds and math drill and his housecleaning chores. Then we go to the library and market. So he is motivated to keep up with his work during the week so he doesn't have a pile to deal with on his "easy" day.

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