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How to make MWF/TTH scheduling work...?

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My son is in  1st grade. Right now we are trying to do A LOT everyday. Our day is:


Scripture study




writing (WWE)

book report/story writing

computers TTH

memorization, grammar TTH


music- recorder practice


We have a hard time fitting it all in, and we're often rushing through the fun stuff at the end of the day.


I've been thinking of switching to a MWF/TTH schedule, something like math and LA on MWF and history, science, computers and art on TTH.




How can I get through a whole year's worth of math only doing three lessons a week? Saxon has 130-something lessons. If we only do three per week, taking three months off during the year (whenever those months happen to be) that would leave, at best, 40 weeks of school, which would get me 120 lessons of math IF I never missed a day (HA!).


So, I know there are people who don't do math everyday, or phonics, or however you swap it, I know there are people who are not doing everything everyday. So what's the secret? Do you skip lessons? Do you do two in one day? Do you just not finish a grade level every year and not care about it? (NOTE: the latter is not an option for us. My son is in a state program that buys all our books in exchange for taking standardized tests four times a year and  quarterly check ups with a teacher. Ick, I know, but, hey, free books of my choice!)


How can I adjust our schedule so that the "fun" subjects get more time, but the "vital" subjects are still happening and getting done?



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36 weeks of school, 3 days a week= 108 days. So you just have to combine enough math lessons to get it down to 108. Pick the easiest concepts to double up lessons. I don't know about Saxon, but Singapore math will nearly always have a unit on shapes or graphs or something that's so easy we can race through it.

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I do math everyday.

But I alternate grammar/copywork (T/th) with phonics/spelling (M/w/f). He does read every day.

And I alternate history (m/t) and science (w/th) with fine arts (f).

We do scripture study and memory work (along with poetry and read alouds) every morning; but we don't do computers, book reports, or recorder so can't help you there.

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We don't do everything on every day.  I think it breaks up the schedule to have different things on different days.  We do math (MEP) and composition every day.  (We just started doing MEP every day, instead of 2 pages 2x per week, because it's getting harder).  Both of these are programs meant to be used every day.  Our grammar book has 3 lessons a week, and so we do that MWF.  We alternate that with handwriting, so she does 2 pages in her handwriting workbook on T and Th.  We also do Latin 3 days a week, but that's usually T, Th, and Saturday.  She practices piano every day, and reads (or looks at books) for 20 minutes... but she does those whenever they fit in, and not as part of school.  We also usually do memory work in the car, because what else is there to do but recite poetry when you're driving around?  We do history on T and Th afternoon, after everything else is done.  She usually does science on Saturday mornings, with her dad.


All this is to say that I agree with you that following the same routine every day is monotonous and a whole lot of work.  But I don't think you need to totally switch to a T/Th schedule to get a little variety into your programming.

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We do some subjects daily, and others on a schedule. Using your list, this is what I personally would do. (I am assuming your subjects which are on the same line, history/science and memorization/grammar are either combined or alternated? If not, I would do science and history on opposite days, not the same day)


5 days a week



Music: Recorder Practice




Writing WWE




Book Report/Story Writing



Scripture Study




So things like math are done daily as opposed to being doubled up on. This is good for general practice and familiarity and helps with getting all the lessons done over the year. The subjects which rotate can be given a more dedicated chunk of time at once to let them really be processed more fully (I find two 1-hour sessions of science much more productive than 5 30 minute sessions, for example.)


Many curricula are built around not having daily lessons, or are easily combined by looking at the weeks work and dividing it instead of seperate lessons. By not doing every subject every day you avoid the wasted time moving between subjects, packing up one thing, figuring out what to do in the next thing, etc.

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Do you need to take 3 months off?


I would actually consider it superior for long-term retention to do math 3x/week for 50 weeks (150 days) rather than 5x/week for 36 weeks (180 days) because there isn't a long break in the summer for children to forget what they're learning.

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