Friday, November 13, 2015

Homeschool Wrap-Up With Master Schedule

Homeschooling is a blessing. Nary a day goes by that I don't feel that to my core. But it's very busy now that I have four school-age students. Here's an overview of our first-semester readings, followed by a master schedule we follow. Mental illness (severe OCD) is a big part of our day too and the schedule reflects that. We stick to the basics and they extend their learning outside in their own time. They're natural explorers/nature observers and they enjoy PE games together, too.

An overview of recent and current readings:

Boys - Literature: Treasure Island, and now The Wide Wide World (Christian classic fiction, written in 1850; very long...600 pages). Next up for the boys is Uncle Tom's Cabin.

Boys - History: Continuing with Story of the World, which they weekly tell me how much they love. I do believe they will revisit these four volumes on their own through the years. They find them incredibly engaging and interesting. Some topics are explored further either online or from a comprehensive, youth and Christian-friendly history of the world volume produced in conjunction with Beautiful Feet books.
Girls - We've gone through several selections on extended history of the Pilgrims (Beautiful Feet Early American History, primary), a Jamestown reading, The Courage of Sarah Noble, The Matchlock Gun, and library picture books with various social studies and science themes (see this post for more on the girls' reading--especially the library selections)

A few things are reserved in the evenings after Daddy returns at seven, after which we eat dinner and congregate in the living room for family prayer and an elective, such as great composer study, or drawing with a read-aloud.

Master Schedule
Morning Chores:

~ Get dressed; make bed
~ Clothes in hamper
~ Fold clean clothes, put away

Morning Subjects:

1. Bible Whole Family – Audio Bible on Bible Gateway (Using a Through-the-Bible-in-2-Years Schedule, chronological, Old Testament and New Testaments together; Boys/Mom follow in their own Bibles; girls color in Bible coloring books while listening)
Girls Narrate Bible Readings - Tues./Thurs.
Boys Narrate Bible Readings -  Mon./Wed./Fri.

2. Peter – Math
Paul – Literature & Narration (Oral narration – Tues/Thurs.; Written Narration Wed/Fri)
Girls – Journal Writing
Mom - Start bread making

Mid-Morning Subjects:

1. Peter – Literature & Narration (Oral narration – Wed/Fri;  Written narration Tues./Thurs.
Paul – Math
Girls – Beautiful Feet History Readings with Mom; take turns narrating. Narration is an important part of both Beautiful Feet History and Apologia Science. 

Some notes about narration: Narration (oral retelling for primary, turning to written narration for upper graders) was a natural, expected part of education in former centuries, especially for the upper classes. It got lost as homeschool and/or tiny one-room school houses morphed into modern public education. If you read books like Elsie Dinsmore or The Wide Wide World, you see how prominently narration and recitation figured into formal education. 

Visual learners don't learn as well through oral narration, and I take that into account in my homeschool, even if Charlotte Mason would disagree. The more the child groans about narration-- especially later in the year after they've had practice--the more you can take that whining as an indicator of learning-style preference. At first narration is hard for most of us, but auditory learners catch on more quickly. 

My Mary, age 8, can narrate like nobody's business; she amazes us all. Paul finds it akin to torture, but he's getting better and I don't push. His tendency is to try to include too much.

Mid-Morning Subjects Cont.:

2. Peter – Writing/Grammar
Paul – Apologia Science & Notebook
Girls – Free time

After-Lunch Subjects:

1. Peter – Apologia Science & Notebook
Paul – Writing/Grammar
BethAll About Reading Level 2 with Mom
Mary – Saxon 2 Math Practice w/ Paul nearby (Mary will start Teaching Textbooks Math 3 in December or January)

2. Peter – History Reading
Paul – History Reading
MaryAll About Reading Level 3 with Mom
Beth – Saxon 1 Math Practice

3. Peter – Apologia Science W/Primary Notebook Reading to Girls; Girls narrate; sometimes hands-on work
Paul – Computer Programming
Mom – Prepare Hands-on Saxon Math lesson for girls (combining the girls)

4. Boys – Online Geography on Kindle (to start Northstar Geography in Feb)
Girls – Saxon Hands-on Math Lesson with Mom

AWANA - I record their individual verses on my LG flip phone, which has better sound quality than our Kindle, and during the day they take turns listening to their verses with headphones. After about three days of this, they can usually recite the verses well with the reference. Paul prefers studying on his own, as oral work isn't as beneficial for him.

How has your semester been going? What readings have you enjoyed? 

Have a blessed weekend and thank you for reading here!

Weekly Wrap-Up


Erin Vincent said...

Great list of books! We read Treasure Island a few months back and really enjoyed it. I like what you said about the oral narration not working greatly for types of learners. That is so true! Thank you for sharing your lovely week. #WeeklyWrapUp

Christine said...

Erin, I sure appreciate you stopping by! Have a blessed week.