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Homeschool Scheduling Options for Next Year


g007girl
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How do you schedule your year?  

  1. 1. How do you schedule your year?

    • Same schedule as public schools
      38
    • Six weeks on, 1 or 2 weeks off
      24
    • Three months on, one month off
      3
    • Year Round, taking breaks when needed
      113
    • Other options...please explain
      25


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Our life is too crazy for anything else. For example, we moved in November and all our stuff and books arrived during December and January. Not much happened during that time so the real year began in January. Second-why stop during the summer? We tend to get so involved in one subject that we get off track from a true 36 week plan that we need extra time anyway. Of course we don't live in a neighborhood full of kids running about so there is no distraction there.

Plus, who can put the breaks on curiosity and say nope-not going to keep going, you must amuse yourself for 3 months?

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I schedule 9 weeks on and 1-2 weeks off because this fits us and what we use. TOG has 4 units, 9-10 weeks each and we have 1-2 weeks off in-between.

 

This is next year's schedule

 

Sept. 15-Nov. 14th - First Quarter

Two week break: Nov 17-28 (Thanksgiving week plus a week for planning 2nd quarter)

 

Dec 1. -19 - first half of 2nd Quarter

Dec. 22-26- Christmas break

 

Dec. 29-Feb 6.- second half of 2nd Quarter

One week break Feb. 9-13 (plan 3rd quarter)

 

Feb 16.-Apr. 17 - 3rd Quarter

One week break, Apr. 20-24 (plan 4th Quarter)

 

Apr. 27-July 3- 4th Quarter

 

This is 36 weeks, 4 days a week 7:30 am to 12:00 noon. Fridays are "extra" days but super short, 1-2 hours max. We have 4 weeks that are variable within the above schedule b/c we will need them, I'm sure. I try not to go beyond 40 weeks in a year. We may have lazy days b/c we're ready for a break before our "week off" but the core subjects are done.

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I voted for the all year and take breaks as needed. That's how our schedule has gone this year. If I'm open to this option I won't get so frustrated!

 

My mom has been very sick this year, so we've traveled over there (6 hour drive each way) to help many times, which has thrown our schedule off. I KNOW a regular ps schedule is out the window, I would've been pulling my hair out! So by realizing our schedule can be year round, and each of these trips is just a break (because no matter how hard we tried, it was very hard to get much schoolwork accomplished!), it's worked out much better! :)

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I'm trying to decide how to schedule my year...I'd like to know what you guys do.

 

I'm heading into my ninth year of homeschooling and have tried a few different methods over that time. I liked the idea of taking three complete months off throughout the year ~ December, April, and August, for example ~ but ultimately didn't like the rhythm of taking an entire month off so often. I also preferred a slightly longer summer break. Along those same lines, I don't care for schooling year-round and just taking breaks when needed. I want more predicability than that.

 

Ultimately, I've found that roughly six weeks on, one or two weeks off is a winner both in terms of our educational efforts and our need for rest and recharge. I'm not a slave to that schedule, but it provides a nice basis. We typically start around mid-September and have a week off at the end of October. School through mid-December (with a couple of days off for Thanksgiving) and take our Christmas break of two or even three weeks. Another week off in mid-February, and another for spring break in early April. One more break week at the beginning of June, when we typically go camping, and then school through mid-July. August in particular is very busy for us so between that and the good weather we Washingtonians wait for all year, I'm more than happy to take a complete break before heading into a new school year.

 

Hope that helps!:)

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I voted "other". You could describe our school year as "like the public schools but TWEAKED".

 

I start school in July (June 30 this summer), so that we have a head start. Then we take a day off here and there when absolutely necessary (like we have houseguests), but we don't take such a long Christmas break or a full spring break.

We finish up as soon as possible in the spring. This is our last week, which is a week and a half before the public school here. I am aiming to get out in April next year. (But I aimed that way this year and missed by a couple of weeks). I don't like a really long (more than 6-8 weeks) summer vacation because I long for structure and my kids benefit from structure. I do, however, enjoy the change of pace that comes with a defined summer vacation.

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I schedule 9 weeks on and 1-2 weeks off because this fits us and what we use. TOG has 4 units, 9-10 weeks each and we have 1-2 weeks off in-between.

 

:iagree:

 

This is what we do, but I haven't figured out all our dates for next year yet. I can barely keep up with wrapping up this year right now, with all my outside commitments! :eek:

 

I'm hoping to get it all planned out this summer, but in general, we will follow TOG's 4 Unit schedule.

 

Clear as mud?

Melissa

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We are ending on May 20th this year, taking a nice break through June and then starting a light schedule in July. August will be our school beginning (because here we like to stay in the ac by then) so we can take 2 weeks off in October and a month at Christmas/New Years. Not sure how the 2nd half of our year will go, but that's what I have so far.

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I try to do at least 6-12 weeks before a break. And we only kinda/sorta do school work over the summer. :tongue_smilie: We start back mid-August. Take a week off sometime in September (all the bugs are gone, and it's beautiful here). Another week off for Thanksgiving. A week for Christmas. Then I don't have any real breaks scheduled, but sometime in February some of us will come down sick with something. (Actually it was March this year....shingles and chickenpox, followed by coughs and colds.) Then another break the end of May (French Open is on!), and finish up school stuff on and off through May and June. Off for all of July and half of August. And on and on we go.

 

I'm one of those that doesn't care when we finish a book, we just start the next one when we're done.

 

Though with my high school students we do a fair amount of work on Saturdays to try and keep to a regular school year schedule.

 

HTH,

Michele

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"Public school year, tweaked" This is what we do. Our year starts after Labor Day, and we take days off as needed. We try to finish everything up by Memorial Day, but will work past if needed. This year we took a couple long vacations, so we'll be going into June. That's fine with us as the weather doesn't really get nice here until July.;)

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We are almost finished with this school year-- next Friday is our last day. Will then take the rest of May off and then start the first full week of June, doing 4 days a week. I just need a day for appointments, groceries and other errends. So, we will do June and July, taking the last week in July off to go to family camp. Then do August, September, and part of October (all 4 days a week), then take off the rest of Oct til the baby comes as I can not homeschool when I am 38-42 weeks pregnant. Start back in November and take a couple of days off for Thanksgiving and then 2 weeks at Chirstmas. Go January, Feb and March (still 4 days a week), take a spring break, and then finish up in early May. I will see how a 4 day week works. I think we may need to make Fridays a clean up day-- finish lessons that didn't get done etc, but also a clean the house and get errends done day. This is a new concept for me, so we'll see how it works.

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We are almost finished with this school year-- next Friday is our last day. Will then take the rest of May off and then start the first full week of June, doing 4 days a week. I just need a day for appointments, groceries and other errends. So, we will do June and July, taking the last week in July off to go to family camp. Then do August, September, and part of October (all 4 days a week), then take off the rest of Oct til the baby comes as I can not homeschool when I am 38-42 weeks pregnant. Start back in November and take a couple of days off for Thanksgiving and then 2 weeks at Chirstmas. Go January, Feb and March (still 4 days a week), take a spring break, and then finish up in early May. I will see how a 4 day week works. I think we may need to make Fridays a clean up day-- finish lessons that didn't get done etc, but also a clean the house and get errends done day. This is a new concept for me, so we'll see how it works.
That sounds interesting! As in, "Maybe I wanna try that too" interesting! Hope it works out well for you!
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9 on 2 off for next year. We tried the 3 months on then 1 off but I also did not like the whole month off. We are also planning a 40 wk year next year with only the month of July completely off. We will just do half days for August. This will give me more wiggle room during the year to get everything done but also feel free to take a day off if dh is home. I am only home 4 days a week but I do count Friday as a school day because the boys use it to catch up on reading and finish any unfinished writing but they don't cover any new material on that day.

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We follow a similar schedule to public school but don't necessarily take off the same days. I am a spoild homeschooler who can't stand the noise and chaos at my favorite public places on those days:) We also do "light school" during the summer, to make up for those longer than intended breaks during the year and to complete things that we haven't done. Summer school is 3 mornings a week.

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We will be finished this week, and start back up first of August. We really get antsy in the spring and bored by August. We do TOG and this year we will take a one week break between units. During this break she will review and have a unit test, and maybe a few other light things. We use to school only Monday-Thursday, but since hitting middle school this just isn't possible any more.

Janis in DE

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this is roughly two months on, one month off. I find that I need all of December off, all of March off due to terrible allergy problems, June off for scout camps, and September is when we do things like vacation or hit the museums--nothing is crowded on a weekday in September.

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just because it seems like it is always changing. This next year we won't take the whole summer off, but do 2 hours of work a day. We'll be finished with our school year the second week in June. Then we'll take a month off or so, and after that, do the 2 hours a day thingie.

 

My son may be going to ps next year and so I have to decide if we will conform to his schedule or do our own thing. I like having the whole month of December off-I'm crafty and like to make presents, so I might do a tweaked ps schedule like others mentioned. Many of our kid's friends are in school and so it can be a bummer when they are running around outside, want to play, but my kids have work to do. That is why I won't do a full schedule during summer.

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I voted for the same as school schedule, but really we're more the school schedule tweaked as well. When we started we did the 6weeks on 1-2 weeks off, but as my kids got older and they had more public school friends, they voted for the change. So now we start in the beginning of August, that way we have some playing room when life gets crazy ;)

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I voted other as well. I schedule 40 weeks of school although about 25% of them are light weeks. Then I pick up a calendar and start blocking off when to have the 12 weeks off. We take a longer break in May and June so I can get some planning done. Then I mark off time for holidays and vacation, a week around birthday time for testing, and try to spread out the remaining weeks. For a look at what I've planned for next year, you can check out my blog at the link below.

 

Preliminary School Calendar

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This year we are going to try a four days a week (M-Th) schedule. This means we can take off 7 weeks throughout the year and still get in our 180 days. The plan is to take off two weeks in the summer (June), two weeks at Christmas, one week in the fall, and one week in the spring. This gives us a week to play with when needed.

 

I've always been tempted to try the 3 months on/1 month off schedule, but I also think a whole month off (unless in the summer) would be way too long.

 

Another good schedule is to take off six weeks in the summer, six weeks at Christmas (Thanksgiving to New Year's), and then have two weeks to use in the fall and two weeks to use in the spring. I'm tempted to do this, but I think I'm really going to need a four-day week so I can get errands and cleaning done regularly.

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I'm jealous Chloe! I really want to do a 4 day week, but I just can't convince the kids that doing schoolwork over part of the summer wouldn't be horrible - even if it was just partial days.

 

We do a bit of a variation on the 6 week on, one week off. It just depends upon how it works out best to divide of some of the work. And then if for some reason we're behind, we don't get all the time off, or go later into summer break. We're real people here, so I have yet to have a year that ended on the originally planned "last day." :D

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I tend to schedule similarly to public schools, but don't take off all those teacher training days, one day holidays, etc. Instead, we take off an entire week at Thanksgiving, 3 weeks at Christmas, and an entire week of spring break. We still are going to finish a week before the schools this year, as we also don't do "snow days".

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We schedule the same as public school because dh is a guidance counselor so we follow his school schedule. Every year I think that we will do a little something during the summer but end up taking a total break.

 

Actually, this year, I did 9 weeks on and then tried to take a few days off. but most of our breaks fell over holidays or when dh was home.

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I would love to school year round but we....

Farm.

This means in May the fences need to be repaired and the heifers need to be sorted and sent out. Then the corn needs to be planted and then First crop comes around, then second crop and then third, fourth and hopefully fifth. At all those harvest times I need to feed a crew of men, run for parts, pick up guys out in the field, make supper, take it out to them, drive tractor, haul loads, etc. So needless to say my duities as a wife take over and my 'homeschooling' duties get put aside until summer is over. I like to start up in August but this year a new one is arriving and so it's going to be my 'getting to know the baby' month.

 

This year we will start Sept. 1st and end the end of May. Just in time to help bring heifers out to pasture, again. ;)

 

~fw

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Guest sarathan

I voted same schedule as public schools- this is what I plan to do. This is only because my dh is a public school teacher.... it's nice to be on the same schedule as him. However, if he wasn't a teacher, I would probably school year-round with frequent breaks. :)

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We pretty much follow the school schedule. Our winters are tough so we like to spend as much time outside in the late spring and summer. We do have a five day schedule with the fifth day being used for dance, gymnastcs, library and piano. They are only available an hour and a half away so it is a full day but no book work.

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I voted "other". This year we did year round and have taken breaks when needed, but it just hasn't worked for us. I really need to stay on a more strict schedule; so we are going to do a four week on and 1 week off schedule for this year.

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Thank you all so much for your input! You ladies are awesome!!!

 

We've always stuck closely to the public school, but I hate having such a long summer break. My oldest is in public school. My 9 year old wants as long a summer break as possible and my 6 year old wants to do school year round, although I'm not really sure he understands what year round means! I like the 6 weeks on with 1 or 2 weeks off. I'm worried if we do the year round thing it'll get too hectic and we'll get behind or take too many breaks. I guess my 9 year old will just have to suffer!

 

Thanks again!!!

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We do about 6 weeks then take a break for a week. I do keep the ps schedule in mind though. We are off for winter and spring breaks at the same time, for example. It takes a wee bit of juggling, so sometimes it might not be exactly the 6 weeks. We do this so that we can have a more frequent breather. Usually during our weeks off, we use the time to visit interesting places or take on an interesting project.

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I never meant to but we have been doing year round. this past year we started in July and took breaks every 6 weeks and two weeks for vacation, then another for Christmas and Easter...and now we have no breaks planned until August!

 

I found out that the kids' activities being on hiatus for holiday breaks makes taking those weeks off nice since we literally have NOTHING to do! But then doing touristy things are more crowded. so we do some breaks with the local school system and some when we want.

 

For our family the structure of getting up, dressed, eat and do school makes the day so much better. the structure keeps them happy, more productive, and happier kids all around.

 

we will school until July and take a month off. But my kids love the school room so much that I plan to leave some 'summer workbooks' on the table and let them do them if they want. I have to kick them out of our school room now in the afternoons when we are done...

 

so for us year round helps with the structure of our household. we don't do a full load year round. science is 36 weeks. grammar was 100 lessons. so when it's done it's done. we always do some kind of reading and math year round. we take a few weeks off between 'years'.

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We take off the same days as public school. Ds gets to play with his friends on those days. We usually start back in full swing at the beginning of August, since we take off a week in mid September.

 

We follow a light schedule in the summer just to keep his skills fresh.

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Well we've done year-round from the beginning. My suggestion is to not ask your kids if you don't think you're going to like or want to do the answer. They're not always going to WANT to do what they NEED to do, and sometimes you just have to be firm and make them. I'm pretty sympathetic and make lighter seasons, heavier seasons, but I'm not going to stop schooling this summer just because dd asked. She asked, and I said no. ;)

 

BTW, I'm due in September, so I'm considering this summer time especially important as a way to prep or get ahead for fall. I'm not going to try to do a full schedule, but I am going to focus on a few particular things that I want to nail in order to get her in a good position to be independent in a couple of subjects when the baby comes. For instance I plan to do some IEW-style paragraph writing this summer so that skill gets solid. Then come fall I can simply include the paragraph-writing assignment on her checklist and she can do it, as she'll have the foundation. That's why I said they sometimes need to do something that isn't what they'd want. It's what I think is best, so it's what we'll do.

 

We do make our summer work fun. As much as possible we take it outside on a blanket, in a tent, at the park, etc. I'm not sure where a couple hours of sitting in the sun reading, talking, and doing a bit of writing together killed anyone. Hasn't killed us yet at least. Besides, when my dd asked for school off this summer, she then started adding these caveats (still have to do history, still have to do science, still have to...). By the time I do all the things SHE wants, I might as well add another thing or two and call it doing school. ;)

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We essentially do year round. We finish the majority Apr. 30th and then do light work until July 6th when we resume all subjects. The light subjects are mostly history and science with some math review mixed in. It works for us.

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I am going into my 4th year, and this will be our first time switching to a year round schedule. We are set to start July 7th and we will have at least 1 week off each month, or as needed. I figured why take such a long summer break. The kids are excited about it, and so am I!

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We do year-round but I actually schedule us into monthly units.

 

What I do every year is take out the calendar and mark off the weeks when we will be on vacation or have a holiday that overwhelms the week and we take those weeks off. Currently we are on our two-week summer vacation.

 

Then I schedule out the "units" so that every 4 to 8 weeks we do a fun week of school. During this fun week we do lapbooks or explore fun topic or just do art and science projects. These weeks are also nice to use as floaters so that if we get really sick or have to take some time off we can just switch things around without interrupting our normally scheduled work.

 

We also do 4 day weeks. Mon through Thurs is when we do seatwork (math, phonics, spelling, science, history, Latin, etc.) and on Fridays we go to the library, co-op and playdates.

 

Hope you find a soultion that works great for your family.:001_smile:

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(meaning year round with breaks when we need them) has been the most productive. I don't feel like we are starting all over when the fall hits ...

 

although my daughter has been on a break (just reading a lot and writing her stories) she is working on the diagnostic test for ACE and hopefully will be able to graduate by the time she is 21 (maybe 22).

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We homeschool year round with only the month of July off. We will be heading into our eighth year of homeschooling. When I started it didn't take very long to get school done with only one, so we would spend a couple of hours every day and then be done. We start the new year in the month of August. We do a heavy load until we get our English and Math done, usually some time in March. Then we have easy days and get caught up on all those things that fell behind a little. We live in the country and when the days start to warm up we like to be outside. I don't give a Christmas break or Spring break. We have Christmas eve and Christmas day off. When my husband has days off they will also get these off. We did take a week off in November because I had a baby(#6). It just works better if we don't have breaks then its not hard to have to get started again. I know. I'm a mean mom.

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G007girl, schooling in the summer doesn't have to be suffering. Change the pace, do things you don't get to during the regular year. Do you find yourself skimping on science during the regular year? Summer is a GREAT time to do that! Or art or a subject you can do on the computer (calvert spelling, math drill with QuarterMile math). Just because you do things year-round doesn't mean you do them the same WAY year-round. Lighten up, do fun things, take advantage of the summer. And cut deals with them (finish this and you won't have to do it this summer, etc.). I told my dd she is to finish her current math book by the end of the summer, but if she finishes early she doesn't have to start any new till fall. And I told her she worked hard on spelling this year so she could take a break till fall. It basically means you have 3 semesters to work with instead of two, and you can tailor what you do then to fit the time. You're going to have fun! :)

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This year I scheduled a total of 40 wks., with 5-6 wks. on and 1-2 off, plus additional time around Christmas. We will end our year mid-July. and start back the 2nd wk. of Aug.

 

Next year we will be using TOG so my schedule will adjust accordingly. I'll probably do at least 5 weeks before breaking and then a week or two in between units. I'm still waiting on TOG to get here so I can better schedule.

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I like the idea of going year-round but we've never really accomplished that. We officially start in September and take off a month for Christmas (half of Dec. half of Jan.). Then at some point we take a week-long Spring break. It may or may not coincide with the public schools, but it's hard to keep working if the neighborhood kids are running around outside or inviting us to go places so that's usually easiest. Then we keep going as far into June as we can stand. Local schools get out the third week of June. Every year I say we'll keep up some math and Latin every day...maybe do art and typing (things we don't always get to during the year). But we are really very busy in July with camp, VBS and sometimes company visiting. Usually in early or mid-August I try to begin some of the fun stuff: history, science and book list-type reading.

 

We also take days off here and there. Usually too many in the fall and not enough in the spring. :)

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This year was my first full year of homeschooling. My two older girls had done private and then public/magnet schooling. My youngest has done some church daycares that actually taught, which is nice. This year, being my first year working part time out of my home (after working the same full time job outside the home for 17 years) AND the first homeschooling (and therefore the first year having the privilege of being with my kids full time for the first time ever...) I gave myself and my girls a very wide berth. We did JUST the basics academics wise and got used to being with each other full time, spent lots of time reading and getting some home survival things on track (chores, light scheduling for my sanity, etc.).

 

Next year, I'm planning on doing year round (starting with this summer--catching up on math). Working part time out of the home is such a gift but it takes a lot of my time and a good amount of that is during the day. By night time I'm fried and have little to give. It is definitely challenging doing that while also keeping the girls engaged. So, I think the year round plan is going to work better for us. It will allow me to get my work done without guilt and will allow the girls time to get all of their work done as well. I don't do well with breaks. I lack the all important motivation gene.....and we all suffer from it if I'm not careful. So, this is what I'm thinking. Very grateful to read the plans everyone else has. It helps me think it through.

 

Have a great day, Ladies!

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We school four days a week. Dh is off on Thursdays at this time, possibly Fridays starting in the fall. So, we don't have scheduled days when he is home. He is a minister, and so Sundays are not days off for him. With that said, I then decide when I would like to be done, and figure out 180 - 190 days back from that, using my 4 day schedule. I sometimes do 190 days in order to figure in those unexpected teacher workdays that may come up! :001_smile:

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