Friday, July 26, 2013

Weekly update for the mom

    It's that time of year. The kids haven't done enough schooling to be worth making a post; they're busy using up the rest of their summer. There are still school books falling all over my desk though. I've been working on the gnitty gritty lesson plans for our '13-'14 year.

    Kindergarten: Easy peasy. Nearly all of these materials are the sort you just open and do what's next. I've been more carefully reading the First Favorites guide today. I can't wait to do it with her. There's no way I'm going to force this binding open to copy this stuff though; I'll have OfficeMax cut the binding off so it can be 3-hole punched and put it in a binder. I'm still three literature books short of having the whole collection. I'll swear Harry the Dirty Dog and a Frog and Toad treasury have been on our shelves for umpteen years, but they are nowhere to be found. Pshaw.

    Third grade: Grammar, spelling, Latin, and math are "just do what's next" books and don't need plans. Classical Writing needs a little thought put into it. Mostly I need to look closely at the various skill levels and decide where to place her. Thankfully there's a chart in the back for doing just this.
     I think she's changing gears for science. She discovered the big notebooking journals for the elementary Apologia books and they were right up her alley. But she still really likes the idea of a nature based year. I need to spend some time looking over resources and making a firm plan here.

     Fifth grade: Grammar, spelling, math, Latin, and writing are "just do what's next" books. I've spent enough time with his architecture science materials to make a loose framework for the year. Now I need to get that spelled out in actual lesson plans.

     Middle Crew joint studies:
-History: Done. I spent way too long fiddling around in Google Drive and made the exact planning sheet I wanted for Veritas Press history. Then I put those sheets to work right away, balancing the projects, reading and read alouds, so each history week takes approximately the same amount of time. I'm aiming for thirty minutes a day, five days a week.
-Narnia based literature: 3/4 done. I need to write more notes in the Further Up and Further In guide, and realistically look at how much time each day is going to take. I'm aiming at 45 minutes daily for this one, including reading the chapter.

     Eighth grade: Grammar, vocab, writing, Latin, and math are the "just do what's next" books. History took some tweaking, and I still need to finish plugging one spine book change throughout the guide. Science... well. She will do Honor's architecture with him, as an elective. I don't feel confident enough to bulk that up to an eighth grade worthy science credit. The plan was for her to do a full biology course with her older brother too. But.... this is her last year of being footloose and fancy free. I'm feeling pulled to do one more fun, non-textbook science year with her. Another half hour loaded with 8th grade level physics reading, projects and such, combined with the architecture, could work. That would set me back in planning, but we've done even more last minute changes in the past. Decisions, decisions. ****Edited to add: About two hours after Joy and I discussed this, she came to me and firmly said, "Astronomy. Let's do astronomy." Back to the drawing board!

    Ninth grade. Yeepers. This one needs work. Composition starts out with a just do what's next book. Vocab, math, and science are just do what's next. History just needs me to sit down with a planning sheet and map out a plan for reading the main text and the extra books. Literature.... that one isn't even off the ground yet.

    I've put a big dent in it, but there's still more work to be done. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.....

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