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Switching when the new school year starts


RainbowSprinkles
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For us, it was because the real year begins in January, learning happens year-round, and it just didn't make sense to "start" in the fall.

 

For the sake of Sunday school teachers and grandparents, we "promoted" in the fall. Also, when it was necessary to tell someone else what "grade" my dc were "in," I went with the grade dc would have been in if they'd been in school. Dc worked at their ability; we did stuff until we finished or got tired of it, then we moved on to the next thing.

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We started around January because I felt it was more appropriate for one child particularly to start formal academics close to when my kids turned six (which was Feb.). We school year round with breaks and we finished some things already and will finish the remainder of our K curriculum choices very soon. I'm intentionally holding some 1st grade materials, though, for a bit closer to seven and plan to start them around January. That said, we called them first grade in the fall. It just makes sense it seems to "promote" when the school system promotes. I guess it's going to turn into grade names vs. academic level. As time goes on I suspect I will just be using materials as we come to them for the most part regardless of grade level since we school year round.

Edited by sbgrace
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This may be a dumb question, and I certainly don't mean to hijack this thread but have wondered this for awhile.

 

What do you do when graduation roles around/colleges want transcripts?

 

Do you just school an extra year (their age says they should be a college freshman but you call them a high school Senior) or do you finish what you finish? Do you get ahead somehow??

 

I'm just curious, and obviously ignorant.

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This may be a dumb question, and I certainly don't mean to hijack this thread but have wondered this for awhile.

 

What do you do when graduation roles around/colleges want transcripts?

 

Do you just school an extra year (their age says they should be a college freshman but you call them a high school Senior) or do you finish what you finish? Do you get ahead somehow??

 

I'm just curious, and obviously ignorant.

 

There are various things you can do, and I am sure you will get more than one answer for this question. We used an umbrella school in Florida, and then a private Christian school in Georgia to provide transcripts based on the curriculum that we submit. Keep in mind that the laws vary in each state and you have to do whatever works there.

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In California, when Mr. Ellie was in school, some students graduated in January. Don't know if that's still the case or not. Colleges graduate students in January, too (or some time in the winter).

 

You could still graduate your dc in winter but do college admission in the fall.

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We have homeschooled for 4.5 years. The first 1.5 years, we somewhat followed the public school calendar and started a new 'year' sometime around the end of July, beginning of August.

Then I started thinking more on this.

1.) Exactly why does the public school year start in August/September?!

2.) If I have rejected the public school system, their grade levels, their scope and sequence *and* their teaching methods, why was I then using their calendar?

3.) We school year-round so it was odd to start a new 'year' at some arbitrary point in the year.

4.) DS has a late December birthday, so it made more sense to just go by his age.

 

What do you do when graduation roles around/colleges want transcripts?
I don't see that as an issue.

1.) I graduated from public school 24 years ago and many people in my class graduated mid-year. Some went on to college then and others worked a few months before going on to college the following fall. Others graduated early just to be done with school and get on with their lives.

2.) The trend now is for students to take a 'gap year,' in which case they could just take a 'gap half-year.'

3.) In this area, many homeschoolers attend community college for dual-enrollment during their high school years. If you do this, it certainly doesn't matter.

 

Now I have had people ask what if we end up sending DS to public or private school - then what? I still don't see that as an issue. If DS were in a public school in one state and we moved to another state, there would be an issue of their scope and sequences not lining up. I don't see this any differently. We don't use grade levels, so it wouldn't be an issue to DS. He would just enter school based on his age.

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We started in July because that's when DD was ready. Then we kept that schedule because that was when her cousin of the same age moved to the next grade at her public school, which is on a year round schedule. In reality, it matters not one iota. We school year round and take no long breaks. We finish what we finish when we finish it, and I wouldn't say she wasn't first grade or she was second grade based on what work she was doing. She's sort of all over the place. :) Since my niece's school will be switching to a traditional schedule next year, we'll start saying she starts the new grade in August. I'm just trying to keep her in the same grade as her cousin. They love being in the same grade. lol

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It's good to know that other people have done this and still do this! Thanks for posting the question!

 

Last year around this time, when our oldest daughter was four-going-on-five, I said to my husband, "This child is ready to start Kindergarten now. Why should we wait until September to start, since we plan to homeschool, anyway?" He agreed that it might be simpler to make a "school year" begin where the year already begins, and to homeschool year round. We started K in January, and she turned five the next month. It has worked out so well, and we'll probably continue in this way. We don't take any long breaks, we just do a month's worth of learning in a month's time, and then move on to the next month. ;)

 

All the girls have birthdays at the beginning of the year -- January for the twins and February for the oldest. It somehow makes it easier to plan everything. I can think, "They'll be 4, 4, and 6 in 2011." I don't keep everything on "grade level," whatever that is. :tongue_smilie: But we do tell people that the oldest is in Kindergarten. When January rolls around, she'll be in first grade! :D I don't think it matters, we're not "normal" in any case. We homeschool! :lol:

 

There was the time this year when my mom offered to give me "The School Calendar" from my niece's school. She said,

 

"Here, you might like to have this."

:001_huh: "Why?"

"So you can know when the schools are on and when they're off."

"Why?"

"So you can give _______ a day off now and then."

"We do that on our own schedule. In fact, that's why we're here visiting with you today, because we're on our own schedule."

:001_huh: "Oh. Never mind." (Snatches calendar and hides it under a stack of papers). :lol:

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I'm glad to know others do this, too! My dc's bdays are also Jan and Feb, so it makes sense to me to start with the new year, or around then. We'll do school year round and breaks will only be when we are traveling (which we do a couple of times a year for about a month at a time).

My dd will turn 5 in Feb, but is already reading most things, loves writing for fun, and is definitely ready to begin K in Jan rather than wait a whole 8 months more. It just makes more sense for us to go ahead and begin.

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Thanks for this thread...Since we are new to this way of homeschooling, we will start now and school thrughout this year with breaks...This may put us on a January start next year...My oldest son is already 10 though and will want to switch grades in September...I guess I could just "switch" in terms of name but start 5th grade stuff next January...It won't become an issue until we get to 12th grade I guess ;)

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Hi, I also graduated from college in December. They don't care. A semester is a semester - lol.

 

Also, we school year-round, but with breaks during the year. Whenever they are ready for the next level, we just start. I do, however, tread water with stuff when I feel like they aren't developmentally ready for something. For example, we're pretty much finished with Sonlight Core 2, but I don't think my son could handle Core 3...so we're just waiting until later this spring/early summer...

 

As far as graduating high school...sheesh...mine might be doing that dual enrollment thing later anyway. There are always classes you can take/internships you can do. I'm not real keen on my kids graduating from college at an early age.

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I'm just wondering how it happened that you,for example, start your school in January instead of August (or whichever months). Is it because you pulled your dc out at that time or how did you make that choice?

 

It happened for us because where we were living at the time everyone starts their new school year in January. If you live in the southern hemisphere that is the end of the summer break so I'm guessing half the world starts their new school year then - so maybe not so wierd after all.

 

We are in the northern hemisphere now but we no longer have a set time to start the school year. When we finish one level for a subject we move on to the next one - whenever that happens to be.

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I'm just wondering how it happened that you,for example, start your school in January instead of August (or whichever months). Is it because you pulled your dc out at that time or how did you make that choice?

 

For us it just happened that way. My kids started schooling at about 4.5...that put us in around after Christmas...LOL. Also...I like my kids to finish what we are soing before moving on to the next thing...and somehow we are never finished in June...but we are finishing up by November...

 

For school records our law says the school year is July 1- Jume 30, so I have to submit reports and grade levels that relect that, but for our homeschool...the new fun stuff begins Jan 2 (or the Monday after that.)

 

We school Jan-June, Aug.-Nov. without breaks...We break for garden planting and summer swim team in Late June & July, and from Thanksgiving - New Years Day to focus on crafts, baking, cooking, Christmas and other things of interest. Of course the kids are always reading, writing and we even get some math in there, but it is much less structured during our weeks off....

 

Faithe

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We school mostly year round with the months of Dec and July off. In my head my two oldest switch grades as of Jan. They both have fall b-days and miss the school cut-off so technically won't change until next fall. I tell people they are in first and pre-K but I will bump up their expectations (this is mostly time wise since we always work at their ability) a little starting in Jan because I feel they are more ready for it now than they were in August.

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I've really been enjoying this thread. I've been wanting to change our year to a Jan-Dec one for a long time, but was never sure how to do that. This year I think it will work out because even though we started at our Traditional start time of Sept, we had a lot of field trips and other things come up so we aren't as far along in the 3R's as I had hoped and in a few of those we'll be starting a new curriculum about Jan.

 

So for me This school year will just be a bit longer, with some big breaks in there.

 

I also live in a state where my paper work has to be in by Aug 1 (test scores) and Aug 15 (new letter of intent) so I'll just make sure those reflect the "grade level" changes as needed.

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I've really been enjoying this thread. :iagree:

I also live in a state where my paper work has to be in by Aug 1 (test scores) and Aug 15 (new letter of intent) so I'll just make sure those reflect the "grade level" changes as needed.

 

That's what I have always wondered about. We live in New Jersey (no requirements). :cool: If we ever moved to a "Regulation State," I'd have to figure out how to make paperwork look like we adhere to the public school schedule. How do you do that? :bigear:

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That's what I have always wondered about. We live in New Jersey (no requirements). :cool: If we ever moved to a "Regulation State," I'd have to figure out how to make paperwork look like we adhere to the public school schedule. How do you do that? :bigear:

 

I've never done it, but would imagine that here in VA I just make sure to "promote" them each summer when I turn in my NOI and then make sure to give them a standardized test for that grade before the following Aug. 1st when it's due.

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That's what I have always wondered about. We live in New Jersey (no requirements). :cool: If we ever moved to a "Regulation State," I'd have to figure out how to make paperwork look like we adhere to the public school schedule. How do you do that? :bigear:

 

I don't think there are many states where you would run into a problem. I *think* that even states that require a certain number of days/hours don't actually specify when you have to do this. (but maybe I'm wrong) In MN we do have reporting requirements but they only ask that you give intent by Oct. 1. They ask for birthdate but not grade level. I have to file quarterly report cards that they will receive at odd times but that is not my problem.;)

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