Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Homeschool Planning

Summer is coming, and with it comes a reassessment of our homeschool. As I've mentioned before, we're relaxed homeschoolers. We're riding the Sonlight wave, sometimes surfing in other directions, back tracking, or swimming it straight on.

Merikalyn turned six on May 5th, so she's entering first grade. I've decided to go through Sonlight's K curriculum again. We're only halfway through it (as I chose to take it at a slower pace), but she's really struggling with reading. I purchased Hooked On Phonics for 1st grade, but before we really dig into it, I think it would be wise to review the first few weeks of Sonlight K to really ground in the alphabet and the sounds.

Nolyn is four, and seems to be ready for some simple homeschooling, and I believe he could benefit from sitting in on the lessons as we do a review of lessons this summer.

I don't want to push him, but he's already ahead of where Merikalyn was when we started Sonlight, so I think he'll do well to start now.

In case you didn't catch on, we're year-round homeschoolers. No, we don't homeschool, but we don't take a big lump break either. We may take a few days here or a week there, but you can't really take a break from learning. It should happen whether you schedule or organize it or not.

Anyway, so, for now, our plan is to review in order to strengthen the foundation for Merikalyn's reading, to continue the Montessori style for Keagan (who turned 20 months old yesterday), and to bring Nolyn into the Sonlight mix as we review.

I love the flexibility of homeschool. You can change it up, mix it up, or completely overhaul it. There's no one-size-fits-all. You can back track, speed up, or slow down whenever you need to. Of course, there are days when I think, "Oh LORD, how am I going to do this for 20+ more years... until the last little one leaves the nest?" but, truly, it's rewarding- especially when you see those little successes.


Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

We homeschool all year around, too. I love to do it that way. I don't panic when life gets in the way.

I too, love the flexibility of homeschooling.

As far as curriculum, I don't stick with one thing either. I start out with Bob Jones for K-1st Grade and then switch to Modern Curriculum Press for 2-3 (that's for phonics). For Math I start with Bob Jones for Kindergarten, and then we switch to Modern Curriculum Press for 1st Grade. After First I then do Saxon Math.

It's worked for me so far. Each child is different, so I try to go with the flow.

Luke said...

May you continue to find joy as you ride the Sonlight wave [smile].

And, yes, the flexibility of homeschooling is wonderful!


Anonymous said...

I don't know a thing about homeschooling, but I've read in several places the praise of a certain book, which I've heard is really good about teaching to read. It's called Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons". Maybe you've heard of it? I think it's fascinating (what I hear from these other ladies) and am interested to check it out myself (for the future) but just thought you might like to know of it.

Anonymous said...

I can also vouch for "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons." I used it as a nanny to teach two girls to read. My best friend, who is the reading specialist at the public school, uses it. I have handed out countless copies to friends and relatives who have successfully taught their children to read. I have a copy that I am saving in a box for when my own dd is old enough to homeschool.

I also recommend "BOB books" after a basic phonics program, whether it be Hooked on Phonics, 100 Easy Lessons, Sonlight, or another. Any children's librarian should be able to secure a set for you. The books breed confidence in one's early reading abilty.

Also, try these websites for your daughter to learn to read: "Starfall" and "PBS Island".