Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Homeschool Day

 So, after 10 weeks of 3rd grade, it’s about time to talk about what we’ve been up to.  This will come in short spurts.  This entry is "How We Organize Our Day":

(1) “Dailies”: As early in the morning as possible, we start with: 
                     scripture of the week (2 minutes), 
                     reading (followed by comprehension ?s), 
                     journaling, and 

    Ideally this takes one hour (15 minutes per subject), though it can drag on for 2+ hours.  I place the day’s assignments in a column of plastic filing drawers, which she pulls out—always from top to bottom.  The subjects are not always in the same order--oh, the element of surprise!  Some of this work can be done independently.

    Only 15 minutes/day on math?  This is a compromise between a math-loving teacher and a math-loathing student.  She doesn’t get as much practice as your average public schooled kid, so she probably isn’t as fast at her basic math facts.  But, she doesn’t have difficulty with the concepts.  And, the curriculum we use helps me see that she is keeping a pace appropriate for 3rd graders.  So at the end of the day, we all go home happy.  (Wait, we’re at home all day anyway.  Oh, never mind.)

(2) “Project time”: After dailies come everybody's favorite part - 2 hours (atleast) for 
        Science (inc. health), 
        American History (inc. literature studies and more intensive writing), and 

   We do these in units, so we might spend three weeks on history and then cut to a science unit.  Or, we might mix them both into a day if we’re out of steam on one thing or another.  (More specifics in future posts on these units.  So, far, we’ve covered Colonial America, the American Revolution, the Constitutional period, hurricanes, and taxonomy).

(3) Ok, so that’s what happens Tuesday-Friday.  Mondays are reserved for our homeschool co-op, when it’s in session (18 weeks/year).  Each Monday for 6 consecutive weeks, we meet from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (4 hours for classes and 1 hour for lunch/recess).  Classes are taught by parents, though teaching a class is optional.  Kids choose 1 class for each of the 4 hours.  

 For example, this session, we're taking 
              Stagecraft (building sets and props for the Christmas play); 
              Native Americans (taught by yours truly);        
              Art; and 
              All About Chocolate.  

  Bet you didn’t take that last one in school.  The teacher is so energetic about her subject (ha!), which has included chocolate's history, manufacturing engineering, cooking, and tasting.  J 

The co-op couldn’t replace a complete homeschool curriculum, but some of our goals for the year are fulfilled through these classes.  Plus, for those of you who are into “socialization,” the co-op is an obvious place to practice being socially “normal.”

(4) What about P.E., music, and recess?  I outsource these subjects right now, through a gymnastics class and the Peabody Children's Chorus.  (When I figure out how, I'll include a link to the choir in the sidebar of this blog.)  We get recess every day after public school gets out, at our co-op, and through our weekly recess group.    

More specifics and photos to come!



  1. Sounds great-I didn't know you homeschool!! We want to homeschool too, Lindsey's only 3.5yr right now though. It really intimidates me at times! I'm excited to follow your blog!
    Melissa Evans Oehring :)

  2. You continue to amaze and impress me every time I talk to you or hear about things you have done or want to do. Your children are wonderful and loving as well as intelligent. You are and awesome family and I am glad I know you.

  3. I second Julie's comment! I'm so glad I finally checked Facebook to see you have this blog! I love it!

  4. Thank you for the homeschooling ideas. I definitely need all the help I can get in the "organization and planning" department. I will check back later for more info. or pick your brain at CHAP! ;o)

    I also enjoy your wit and humor in the postings. I can hear "you" in it, and I love it. Although I've only known you for a short time, I enjoy your friendship.

    See you soon!