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semi-update -detailed planning vs flexibility


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so this homeschooling thing is teaching me a lot about myself.

 

I realise now that I do much better if I have a detailed plan. The first 6 weeks of this year were wonderful, I had every lesson, reading, page, phonogram etc planned out and our days went smoothly, more or less.

 

Then I ran out of my detailed plans, tried to just keep doing the next thing without the details and it wasn't so pretty.

 

I love the idea of detailed planning a bigger chunk, like 12 weeks worth. Or a whole year! But 2 thoughts give me pause, 1. flexibility. 2. time consuming! Okay 3 thoughts, the third combines the others, how can I plan with details in a format that is simple enough to deal with it if I push an assignment to a new day or week? Without spending hours upon hours.

 

I have tried skedtrack and it was okay, but I kept forgetting to tick things off and then it got way behind and out of sync and I had to change our timetable and it was a mess... I think I'm a pen and paper girl.

 

Not sure what I am asking here. I just want to bounce ideas around I guess. Dh is sick of listening to me and suggested that I just go with something for preplanned like AO!

Edited by LMD
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I map out the whole year on a spreadsheet. Weeks of school to the left, subjects across the top. I do not preplan math or spelling, because I expect to have bumps in those subjects and I am more concerned about mastery than anything else there, so I don't care as much about where we end up, though the hope is that we move along at a reasonable pace. The subjects that do get mapped out are History, since we use SOTW and there are 42 Chapters, so I figure out what weeks we will double up on chapters. I also map out what read alouds will go roughly with our History. I put in what Health units I want to cover for each quarter. Science and Memory work goes there, too. This is not a hard and fast plan, just something for me to look at when I do weekly planning and every quarter to see where we are, and if we need to speed up a little. I do my weekly lesson plans on a paper spreadsheet I made.

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I use Homeschool Planet (even though I am a pen and paper girl myself) because I can easily bump stuff or shift it or break it into smaller pieces very quickly.  I had to commit to using it, though.  I planned out things way in advance but I deliberately built in review weeks where we did something lighter and just reviewed.  That way if we got behind I could use that week to catch up.  I committed to sitting down every Saturday to look at what was set up for the following week and confirm we have everything we need and our schedule hasn't changed (drs appointments, new field trip, etc.).  Then EVERY DAY I take a quick minute right when I get up to review the day, print out our lists (I get one too) and start what we are doing.  Then EVERY DAY I take a quick minute at the end of the day to go back through the checklist and confirm we are on track or I need to shift things.  It only takes a really short period of time.  I work from my laptop and keep the laptop right next to me as we are working.  If it is obvious we have hit a serious snag or something happens that causes us to not get through our planned stuff it is easy to adjust as we go.  If for some reason I forget or run out of time Homeschool Planet has a check list that pops up the next day. Easy to shift whatever needs shifting for the kids AND for me with just a few clicks while not messing up the rest of the schedule. Again it takes seconds or minutes to do.

 

Homeschool Planet has saved my bacon over and over and over.

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I map out the whole year on a spreadsheet. Weeks of school to the left, subjects across the top. I do not preplan math or spelling, because I expect to have bumps in those subjects and I am more concerned about mastery than anything else there, so I don't care as much about where we end up, though the hope is that we move along at a reasonable pace. The subjects that do get mapped out are History, since we use SOTW and there are 42 Chapters, so I figure out what weeks we will double up on chapters. I also map out what read alouds will go roughly with our History. I put in what Health units I want to cover for each quarter. Science and Memory work goes there, too. This is not a hard and fast plan, just something for me to look at when I do weekly planning and every quarter to see where we are, and if we need to speed up a little. I do my weekly lesson plans on a paper spreadsheet I made.

 

^ I do something very similar to this for all our content subjects--plan out a year's worth of lessons over the summer break, and put in the pieces throughout the year as I do our weekly schedule.  I know what is coming next, and I put it in where it fits best for that week.  My big yearly plan includes about 5 or 6 catch up or review days for each subject--AND I ALWAYS END UP USING THEM.  :)  Things get hairy, and it helps to have wiggle room.  You can't schedule ER visits and stomach bugs and dying appliances and vehicle repairs and....:)

 

Skill subjects (math, grammar, etc.) are do the next lesson, keeping an eye on how it fits for finishing the book, if that is the goal.  Sometimes finishing the book *isn't * the goal.  Just keep swimming...

 

I do all this planning on paper, because I think better away from screens. 

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I used to plan everything on a spreadsheet or in a Word document, but it was too difficult to move assignments if we got sick or needed to bump things out.   The past several years I've been using Homeschool Planet and absolutely LOVE it.   I can move assignments around, reschedule things, or schedule repeating assignments without having to re-type everything.   I check off assignments as they are completed EVERY DAY, though.   It wouldn't work unless I checked it every day.   Since my kids are in high school and middle school, they work almost completely independently, so the checklist keeps them accountable as well as me.

 

I plan the entire year for most subjects over the summer.   Some things that we outsource, like math, I add as I receive assignments weekly from the teacher (or my high school aged DS adds his own).   I spend a good deal of time over the summer planning and scheduling most subjects, then about 5-10 minutes each Sunday afternoon adding those weekly assignments and printing assignment sheets.   Since I started planning out the entire year, I can honestly say that ALL of our schoolwork for the year gets finished.   Since most curricula contains only about 30-32 weeks of work, we have plenty of leeway to adjust assignments in the course of a 36-week-long school year.   If someone gets sick, we usually keep up with math and reading based subjects, but everything else can be adjusted forward using Homeschool Planet.

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I spend the summer reviewing and selecting resources.  I form a general sequence for the yr and general objectives for each sequence.  Then I only plan approx 6-8 detailed weeks' worth of lesson plans.

 

At the end of every set of detailed plans, I take a week off of school.  During that week I plan out the next set of approx 6-8 weeks.  I have found over time that 6-8 weeks is a good length of time for detailing out lessons while still allowing for adjustments without majorly upsetting our daily plans. I can tweak within that set of plans and still have my foundational framework. I have to have detailed daily plans b/c without them too much "life" interferes with what needs to be accomplished.  Plans keep me accountable to me.

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Then I ran out of my detailed plans, tried to just keep doing the next thing without the details and it wasn't so pretty.

 

Can you give an example of what didn't work? And, did it not work for every subject, or just certain things? (Maybe you can use "do the next thing" for some subjects and more detailed plans for others). 

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Can you give an example of what didn't work? And, did it not work for every subject, or just certain things? (Maybe you can use "do the next thing" for some subjects and more detailed plans for others).

great question... hmmm...

history reading went well because I section out the whole book so we didn't run out of lessons!

maths and other do the next things went fine.

LA for my first grader was probably where most of the wheels fell off.

This really helps, thank you. deep planning some things is much less overwhelming!

off to think some more about this.

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I plan out details (i.e. Daily things, page numbers, etc) but I only put them on the schedule a week in advanced. And I sometimes combined two days into one, split a day up, or drop it completely as needed. It's kind of like I have it all segmented out and I plug and play each week for the sake of flexibility.

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great question... hmmm...

history reading went well because I section out the whole book so we didn't run out of lessons!

maths and other do the next things went fine.

LA for my first grader was probably where most of the wheels fell off.

This really helps, thank you. deep planning some things is much less overwhelming!

off to think some more about this.

yeah, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater.  If there are just one or two subjects that you are having difficulty with maybe there is a way to change how you handle just those subjects...

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I plan out details (i.e. Daily things, page numbers, etc) but I only put them on the schedule a week in advanced. And I sometimes combined two days into one, split a day up, or drop it completely as needed. It's kind of like I have it all segmented out and I plug and play each week for the sake of flexibility.

okay, I think that I'm missing a step. I have the long term plans, finish x book over 30 lessons for example. Then I have daily lists for my older kids. I think I need a weekly plug in page for me...

hmmmmmmmmm

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FWIW, I don't write out plans until my kids are in 3rd grade. I have found they are far too fluid in their learning to gauge accurately. They stall or zoom ahead unpredictably.

I need the plan for me. Even if he zooms ahead, I need to know where we're going! My first grader is a different personality and I am not yet at the competence level of being able to wing it with him. I end up umming and ahhing and forgetting important things. I am too scatter brained to coordinate it on the fly and keep the other kids on track too. I have to accept this weakness, because I have tried to just push through but I can't think straight when I am in teaching zone. This is my 7th year homeschooling and it's mostly been great, but I am hitting a level - middle school content, 4 kids, other life stuff - where my ability to compensate is tapped out...

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When my kids were with a online public charter, their overseeing teacher gave the parents a printout and soft copy of the schedule for each subject per quarter. So I get a schedule each for English, Math, Science, History, Art, Music when my kids were in K to 4th. I just write down the date completed on the printout for my own reference as the charter only cared that my kids finished the allocated assignments and readings before the end of each quarter.

 

We did a relax year 2014/15 after quitting the charter so I only documented what was done but didn't keep any detailed records. Last year (2015/16) most of my kids classes were outsourced so I just checked that they aren't behind on the homework. Literature wasn't really done last year as my husband does the discussions (as I don't like to) and he ended up being busy with work. So this year 2016/17 my kids have a short outsourced literature class each and next year 2017/18 they will do the WTMA Socratic discussion class. Else literature would get neglected.

 

I find my kids and I like having the syllabus kind of framework for each subject and then the time portion is where we are flexible about. So during peak allergy season for my kids (Jan/Feb & April), we didn't do science and did less math.

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Plan by subject not by day. It will solve almost all of your problems. I plan for the entire year this way.

 

Here's a blog post I wrote about it:

http://www.theplantedtrees.com/2013/08/how-i-plan-our-homeschool-subjects-part.html?m=1

Yes! I could never plan the day as a set - no flexibility there. Each subject broken down into a day's chunk, and then I put them on the week's schedule on Sunday.

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Plan by subject not by day. It will solve almost all of your problems. I plan for the entire year this way.

 

Here's a blog post I wrote about it:

http://www.theplantedtrees.com/2013/08/how-i-plan-our-homeschool-subjects-part.html?m=1

Thanks for this. I am a big picture thinker, my motivation dissipates if I don't know (or can't remember at 11am on Tuesday) which is why having the plan helps. I can't hold the big picture for 1st grade phonics and 4th grade writing and 6th grade latin and enriching preschool activities in my head all at once while I'm teaching...

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Several of the things we are doing now are just "do the next thing".  It is a season we are in and it is working.  I still want a plan because I am creating/pulling together resources for an American History study for my 11yo.  It is a complicated time in our lives and she needs to be on her own right now.  She is somewhat caught in the middle of siblings that are too old to group with her and some that are too young.  I have gotten some great ideas from this thread, and from another I posted about creating my own study.  I have been homeschooling 17 years and this is my first time creating one, its simultaneously daunting and exciting!

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Like Chelli, I plan by subject. I have Spelling, say, for ds#2 broken out on a 3 or 4 column by 9 row page, depending on how many days per week I plan to do that subject. Each block is a day's worth of work. I date them as we get them done. If we are off a day, it doesn't matter since I always do the next block. I can see at a glance what I need for the next week or two. I plan out a year's worth of that subject that way. I try to get each subject to end up with between 3 (full) and 3 1/2 pages (27-32 weeks). It allows for field trips, review days, sick days, etc. I know we are almost done when I turn to that 4th page.

It allows for flexibility and keeps me on track

Edited by RootAnn
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Okay, I am a Type-A planner, so this might be too much organization for you, but I tried the 36-week folder system this year and it has worked so well for us! I admit there have been moments when the plan was a little too strict and I didn't have as much margin as I hoped, but overall, it was awesome and we definitely stayed on track more than we have in any previous year. I am really happy with our progress. The change I will make for next year is to build in maybe 2 extra "blank days" (school days where I schedule nothing) every six weeks. This way, if we are a tiny bit "behind" due to an impromptu play date or field trip, I'll know I have even more margin than I built into this year. (We will use the blank days to do catch-up work, and if it turns out there is nothing to catch up on, then we will have a full-on day or two of unschooling.) I wrote about our system in detail here (scroll down a bit for lots of info), and now that we are almost finished with the entire school year, I can say that it worked well for us!

Edited by EKT
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I clicked on Chelli's link & my planning is almost exactly like she explained hers. I, too, got my start with Donna Young's planning sheets. I think the biggest difference between Chelli & my way is that I adapt how many columns per sheet to how often I try to get to that subject. So, I can easily tell how many weeks I have left of a subject because I know each row is "one week" of work. (Maybe she does this, too. I couldn't necessarily tell.)

 

I three-hole punch my sheets and put them in a opens-flat folder/binder thing (that I've never been able to find another one like!) and tab each page I'm using with the subject & kid(s) name so I can open it up when I'm ready to start that subject. 

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I've learned that I need a good scaffold that I can flex to suit my personality and my children's needs. For me, I'm leaning more and more toward AO. I've tried other programs where every assigment for every day is scheduled out for you, or I've tried making something like that for myself.... it never lasts. I'm an incessant tweaker. I like the freedom to change things up on the spur of the moment. I also work, so I need flexibility to change up the plan if work is busy or I'm recovering from a tiring work-stint. I was using Scholaric for awhile, but I found it better to make my own system. My system has two parts:

1. I have a rough plan for the whole year (Ao style, though I'm not full-AO....yet...) laid out. This provides me with a roadmap and gives me license / freedom to do my own thing because I have the big picture in view. As long as I'm roughly tracking with the big=picture-plan, I feel comfortable tweaking to suit whatever comes up for our family. Without the big picture plan, I was always worried we might get behind, and I was scared to let myself or my kids go down bunny-trails

2.  I have a weekly plan for each child that lists the reading goals (AO style) for the week. I have a rough idea of which subjects we will hit on which days, but it's just a rough guideline.  In practice, we go with the flow of the week.

 

I'll add that I've learned I should pick curriculum that isn't too strictly scheduled (for example, one that must be done in a 4 day week), doesn't have too many moving parts for the parent, and doesn't have busywork.

 

Last summer, I sent the kids to a half-day camp for a week. That was my planning week and I laid out plans modeled after AO's schedule (3 terms, 12 weeks each).  It worked so well! It's the perfect combo of detailed yet flexible. I've decided I'll do the same thing each year - they go to camp for a week, I spend that time planning for the next year. 

Edited by JHLWTM
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I've been resisting AO but it's pulling me slowly in.....

haha! I don't think I will go full ao, but the idea was planted because my good friend is planning to go all in soon. I have looked at it so many times and it's lovely, but I don't love it more than my own plans ;)

And I can't see how implementing it will be easier for me - apart from the pre-chosen books...

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Last year (2015-16) I did pretty much what you did. I planned out the first six weeks in exquisite detail and then had everything half planned from there. I figured it would be easy to just take a few days and plan the next 4-6 week chunk and move on with life. Hahaha... yeah. Not so much.

 

This year has worked so much better for us. I've just embraced my inner crazy - ie: the need for a super detailed, all laid out plan - and managed to give it the flexibility that I need and this year has flowed so well. So well. We've had even more family drama, major happenings, and outside craziness but we've kept on track in a relatively stress free manner. These are - more less - the steps I followed:

  • Singled out the "every day" subjects - the ones where if we get to absolutely nothing else that day I can feel satisfied (and honest!) in saying "We did school today." For us this was math, handwriting, and reading. Later in the year I also added a geography workbook and spelling to this for Mr. Inquisitive. All of these are generally just do the next thing subjects and unless a concept needs particular reinforcement we move through at a set pace. For example: my 2nd grader always had to do 3 pages of math, 1 page of handwriting, 2 pages of geography, and 2 pages of spelling.
  • Planned out the rest of the subjects by subject (as other have mentioned). I made up detailed plans for the subjects that needed it - History, Science etc - and divided them up by week (36 weeks total) and days. These plans were not dated but merely labeled Week 1: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3 etc... Things like FLL and WWE which were more do-the-next-thing simply got broken down by weeks and days.
  • Printed out all the printables. All of them. This meant all the student pages for WWE, SOTW, Science, etc. For the spelling that we had originally been  using I simply took all the student pages out of the workbook.
  • Wrote down non-printed assignments on note cards. For example: FLL2 Lesson 34; Read SOTW 2 pages 78-83 etc
  • Created file folders for weeks (1-36) and then days (1-4). Filed everything under the appropriate week/day.
  • Every school day started with the "everyday subjects". After that they were allowed a short break and then I simply pulled the next folder and we did the stuff inside of it. Easy peasy. Everything was already there and ready to go - no thinking or planning required.

Things about this that didn't work well for us:

  • While I left everything undated sticking everything in the folders, while gratifying and easy to grab-and-go during the school day, was somewhat restricting. There were about a dozen or so times when we'd only get to half the stuff in the folder before it was obvious that we were d.o.n.e for the day and then I'd have to refile it (and remember!) to grab it next time.
  • The original plan called for filing all the completed work in a binder. Mr. Inquisitive is not a fan of binders and loose paper. I am not a fan of binders and loose papers. Largely because the latter hardly ever make it into the former and then I'm left with a bookcase full of completed work that will attack at any moment.

Things that I didn't realize were missing until I did:

  • A record for me and for our "official" (not technically required) records. I tried several times to take the "record what we did for the day after we've done it" approach but I could just never get it to stick.
  • A "planner" for Mr. Inquisitive (who could also be nicknamed "Mr. Independent"). Using a blank notebook and just writing his assignments in a bullet list everyday worked well enough but it got really old for me really fast, lol.
  • A plan for read alouds
  • Time for foreign language  and art/music. It just continually got bumped as we all reached the end of productive thinking/focusing.

For the upcoming year I'm largely planning on doing the same thing except:

  • I'm going to print and file all my lesson plans in a 3 ring binder along with a bunch of undated planner sheets. The planner sheets will be filled in with the day's assignments - in pencil! - a week in advance. I think this will give me that tiny bit of flexibility that the folders were missing as well as giving me a record of the year at the end that I can bind and keep.
  • Make a basic planner page template for Mr. Inquisitive and Mr. Engineer with the givens already filled in (see "everyday subjects") and then I can just fill in the rest a day a time (making it easy to erase something and bump it to the next day if necessary).
  • Pre bind all of the loose papers into booklets by subject. If I can get rid of 90-95% of the loose papers in our school day we will all be much happier.
  • Set aside time and plan read alouds.
  • Go to a 4.5 day week and have the half day be exclusively for Foreign language lessons (with small, 5 minute bites of review added to their "everyday" stuff), literature discussion, art, and music.
Edited by WistfulRidge
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so this homeschooling thing is teaching me a lot about myself.

 

I realise now that I do much better if I have a detailed plan. The first 6 weeks of this year were wonderful, I had every lesson, reading, page, phonogram etc planned out and our days went smoothly, more or less.

 

Then I ran out of my detailed plans, tried to just keep doing the next thing without the details and it wasn't so pretty.

 

I love the idea of detailed planning a bigger chunk, like 12 weeks worth. Or a whole year! But 2 thoughts give me pause, 1. flexibility. 2. time consuming! Okay 3 thoughts, the third combines the others, how can I plan with details in a format that is simple enough to deal with it if I push an assignment to a new day or week? Without spending hours upon hours.

 

I have tried skedtrack and it was okay, but I kept forgetting to tick things off and then it got way behind and out of sync and I had to change our timetable and it was a mess... I think I'm a pen and paper girl.

 

Not sure what I am asking here. I just want to bounce ideas around I guess. Dh is sick of listening to me and suggested that I just go with something for preplanned like AO!

I did a whole term for last term. Kids all got file folders with all the photocopying on and I wrote what I need to buy in my diary on shopping day each week. Lol... Half the time I forgot the diary when I shopped and somehow only half the worksheets got done!!!

 

However I'm trying to do the same again this term as it was still better!.

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so this homeschooling thing is teaching me a lot about myself.

 

I realise now that I do much better if I have a detailed plan. The first 6 weeks of this year were wonderful, I had every lesson, reading, page, phonogram etc planned out and our days went smoothly, more or less.

 

Then I ran out of my detailed plans, tried to just keep doing the next thing without the details and it wasn't so pretty.

 

I love the idea of detailed planning a bigger chunk, like 12 weeks worth. Or a whole year! But 2 thoughts give me pause, 1. flexibility. 2. time consuming! Okay 3 thoughts, the third combines the others, how can I plan with details in a format that is simple enough to deal with it if I push an assignment to a new day or week? Without spending hours upon hours.

 

I have tried skedtrack and it was okay, but I kept forgetting to tick things off and then it got way behind and out of sync and I had to change our timetable and it was a mess... I think I'm a pen and paper girl.

 

Not sure what I am asking here. I just want to bounce ideas around I guess. Dh is sick of listening to me and suggested that I just go with something for preplanned like AO!

 

I'm going the other direction. I'm finding that what I plan needs to be clearly planned and ready to pick up and go, but that I need to avoid planning too much. 

 

For my planning subjects, I am using the hanging file system, a folder for each week with that weeks work inside, all ready to go. But I have done two things to give it flexibility that suits us

1. It is a 'do the next thing' system, NOT a weekly folder. I have a chunk of work, and sometimes it takes me 3 days, other times it takes me two weeks. That means for daily activities sometimes the kids don't need to do handwriting for a couple days while we finish the rest of the folder, and sometimes they double up handwriting to keep pace with everything else in there. Sometimes we begin a new folder on a monday, and sometimes on a thursday. But it gives me a managable chunk of work ready to go that is balanced between the subjects. An assignment can also be slipped into a different folder if need be to delay it or swap it.

2. Math is in a separate folder that progresses at it's own rate, when we finish math chapter one we move to math chapter two, whether that takes a week or a month, and it's entirely separate from the rest of our work. 

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thanks so much for all your replies, I have been mulling everything over and you guys have given me some great ideas.

 

At this stage, I am liking the plan by subject idea for some subjects/students, for a 12 week term block. I am evaluating what we are currently doing and am trying really hard not to mess with things that are working!

I am still thinking of how to implement things practically, on a weekly or daily basis. I don't want to print off regularly. Writing is okay, my kids like the spiral notebook list, and my bullet journal works quite well - though I think I need something more homeschool specific. I hate binders and transferring papers around...

 

I will update when I have done something!

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Something else to consider--since language arts for your first grader is where things went off the rails, what about dividing that up into the components and calling each one a subject and tracking them separately?

 

I imagine that would be

--Reading acquisition/phonics

--Spelling

--Reading aloud

--Copywork

--Talking about your read alouds 

--Summarizing

--FLL

 

You wouldn't necessarily do all of those every single day, but you would maybe set a goal to do copywork or spelling daily, reading aloud and discussing daily, summarizing 2X per week, FLL 4 days per week, and reading aquisition daily.

 

That way you don't lose track of any portion of LA.

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I schedule out, in detailed and daily plans, all content and enrichment subjects, as well as Latin. So, history, science, literature (read alouds) & enrichment, recitation & morning meeting, religion, and geography are planned out for the entire year. 

Skill based subjects are IN my plans -- but are pretty much "do the next thing," because I have no way of knowing (with my SNs kids), where we may breeze or where we may hit a brick wall. Content is easier for me :P 

 

No clue yet how it will go. I'm still working on my geography and Latin lesson plans, but have finished the rest.

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  • 3 weeks later...

okay, I have been thinking and some things are starting to take shape.

 

Firstly, keeping what works, which is similar to a morning time I guess. Planning that in a less detailed but more purposeful way.

 

Secondly, separating out my older two a little more. dd has proven that she's ready for some more independence that ds just isn't ready for. She'll join us for morning time, have some specific assignments (la mainly) but will have a lot more freedom in an AO style - along the lines of Regentrude's method.

 

I think that overall, LA needs to be detailed planned for everyone. I consider myself a natural with English subjects but there's such richness that I'm prone to meander or halt.

 

I am putting together some more things this week so I will update again.

 

thanks so much for talking it through with me everyone, I so appreciate it!

Edited by LMD
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I spend the summer reviewing and selecting resources. I form a general sequence for the yr and general objectives for each sequence. Then I only plan approx 6-8 detailed weeks' worth of lesson plans.

 

At the end of every set of detailed plans, I take a week off of school. During that week I plan out the next set of approx 6-8 weeks. I have found over time that 6-8 weeks is a good length of time for detailing out lessons while still allowing for adjustments without majorly upsetting our daily plans. I can tweak within that set of plans and still have my foundational framework. I have to have detailed daily plans b/c without them too much "life" interferes with what needs to be accomplished. Plans keep me accountable to me.

I love this idea. Plan six weeks at a time, take a week off and plan the next six weeks. A great way to prevent burn out, too! I am going to start doing this.

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I'm generally a very flexible-type person, but as far as homeschooling, I found that I did much better with detailed planning.  I did a general plan for the school year at the beginning, and then each month or so, filled in all the details for the upcoming month.

 

I should do that with more things in my life, actually.  I think I'd get a lot more done that way!

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During the summer, I plan out all our yearly lessons on HST+. Each Sunday during our school year, I can look at our schedule for the week and then assign the detailed assignments to days. If we get off track, I can reschedule as needed. I also find that we are much more productive if we have a detailed plan ready to go, but we still have a bit of flexibility when needed.

 

I know some people don't spend much time planning at all, but we would never get anything done if we just did "the next thing". I'm a very easily distracted person, but I'm also a "box checker", so creating the boxes keeps us on track.

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