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#1 of 11 Old 08-20-2011, 06:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This will be our first year HSing (DS is 7, attended ps for K and 1st), and I feel like I have all the materials that we need... I just feel unsure about the planning aspect of it all.  I picked up several Spectrum workbooks (2nd grade math, 2nd grade language arts, etc.), as well as a huge workbook (FlashKids?) that says it's a complete curriculum for 2nd grade.  I also picked up lots of little cheapie books in the dollar section at Target.  I think those will be useful to get the ball rolling on some other topics, like presidents, animals, etc.  One book is just full of simple science experiments, and DS already loves that one.  

 

Now that it's almost time to get started, I feel kind of lost.  I got a lesson plan book (also from the Target dollar section... love that place!), but I'm not really sure how the planning part works.  

 

*sigh*

 

I kind of hope that we just get started, and I figure out our place along the way... I think I'm scared of "failing", because DH isn't totally sold on the idea of HS, and other people think I'm crazy for taking this on.  irked.gif


Xzavier - 9 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif    Julien - 5  modifiedartist.gif   Jayce - 3  moon.gif    Jaxon - 18mos  jog.gif

 

Hoping for a babygirl.gif in November!

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#2 of 11 Old 08-20-2011, 08:40 PM
 
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Okay... take a deep breath.  It's not that bad.  First, keep in mind that your son needs to "deschool" and kind of get out of the mindset of "school" so that he can start looking at learning as a completely different process, and help him start to figure out what he wants to learn about and you to see how he approaches learning things.  This can take some time.  You might want to search this forum for "deschool".

 

But where planning is concerned, take it one week at a time.  Don't try to plan too far out, but yeah--a plan might make you and your husband feel better.  Look at your week ahead.  Look at what opportunities you have, what your son is "into" that week and what you'd like to do for that.  See what homeschooler activities are going on.  Plot them down in your book for the week.  While "deschooling", this might be it, really.  You might want to just figure out if you want to take a field trip or go to a homeschool outing that week.

 

Once you're starting to plan, you can do the above and then look at the materials you have and fill in the activities from each that you want done.  Make sure to plan for about 1/3 of what you actually want to do at first.  You'd be surprised where things lead and how you feel and how long things can take--especially when, in time, your son wants to expand on things.

 

By doing a plan one week at a time, you have some kind of plan/structure for yourselves; but you have the ability to change them each week as you discover what you like, what you don't like, what your son responds to, what he's interested in, what opportunities arise as you find more out about what's available, etc.  When I taught in public school, I learned quick not to try to plot my whole year out.  Stuff happened.  You had to be able to adapt on the fly.  This is all the more true in the homeschool environment--where opportunities to deviate and do what inspires you are way more common.

 

I would try to make a deal with your husband, though, to give you an hour or so each Sunday night for "lesson planning".  This not only gives you a chance to sit down and really think about it, but might also help him feel like it's being given the attention he worries it won't have.

 

Hope this helps!


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#3 of 11 Old 08-20-2011, 09:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks so much!  I was thinking that maybe if I took things one week at a time, it might work out better.  I was worried for the exact reason that you pointed out... I want to be able to expand on things when DS shows interest in something.  If he wants to continue learning about dinosaurs for a month or more, I want to be able to go with that, as opposed to feeling like we need to move on to the next "thing".

 

I keep telling DH to just trust me for this one year.  We both know that ps wasn't a good fit for our son, but DH worries about the amount of time I'll be able to spend "schooling" DS.  Yes, I have 2 (soon the be 3) other children to care for, but his old teacher had 23 other little people to tend to!  


Xzavier - 9 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif    Julien - 5  modifiedartist.gif   Jayce - 3  moon.gif    Jaxon - 18mos  jog.gif

 

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#4 of 11 Old 08-20-2011, 11:00 PM
 
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It doesn't take as long as you think. I find that staying at home has a lot less busy work and standing in line and waiting for others to finish.

 

As for getting started, its a lot like bringing home a new baby. There's a whole bunch of ifs and buts and oh nos, but at the end, you just have to take a leap of faith and jump!


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#5 of 11 Old 08-21-2011, 09:25 AM
 
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I use my "planner" less like a planner, and more just as a record book.  I have a few curriculum things that we gradually and fairly casually work thorough over the year, and as we do something, I just jot it down on the date in the planner.  This leaves you lots of space to grow into a routine without forcing things, it's easy to see patterns of what is working, gives you lots of positive reinforcement in writing down the everyday learning opportunities to start recognizing them ( "Oh, I can put down the letters he wrote to Grandma yesterday--that was writing AND handwriting practice! And Swim lessons on Tuesday."), and makes it easy to know what to pick up the next school time ("I see we did lesson 42 in math last week, I'll open to lesson 43"--no planning involved!)

 

I find that if I put my planning time in researching and seeking out a curriculum or book list or whatever I want to use for school for the year, then I don't have to plan at all the day-to-day stuff, I just write down what we did on a certain day--and the next time we do school, we will just do the next lesson, or review one that we didn't seem to quite have gotten yet.  I have wasted so much time in the past planning day-to-day, and then felt like a failure and extra stressed the first day we got off "schedule".  Which made me not like homeschooling much.  But we move along great and much more pleasantly with a more organic structure.  Be gentle with yourself this first year.  I think the most common way for people to "fail" at homeschooling is to make it much, much more stressful than it needs to be and burn out quickly.


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#6 of 11 Old 08-22-2011, 07:49 PM
 
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I see you are WA.  Since you've already done some school, you've probably declared already.  (Legal age is 8.)  But you don't need any test or assessment until next September.  (An entire year away!)  And this will only be for your own benefit.  The state will not be watching and judging you. No one sees the results.  They are yours to evaluate as you will. Yes, the law says you are responsible to keep your kid at grade level.  But how, they don't say.

 

I mention this because where we homeschool, the people you need to assure are you and your husband.  That's it.  You are on board, so really, it's just your dh.  Ask him how he is going to judge homeschooling.  What are his expectations?  Is he familiar with our homeschooling laws?  They are pretty easy, really.  (For unschoolers like our family it's like a green light to do whatever we want, pretty much.)  

 

My sister led me to the opsi website for Washington.  Under "Online resources" you can navigate to find lists of what is expected at each grade level for each subject.  The don't really make it easy to just click on "2nd grade" and have the full list appear ready to print.  But the info is there for those who want it.  That can be helpful is you don't know where to begin.

 

To be clear, the guidelines on the website are for public school students, not homeschoolers.  We have 11 areas of study we are required to include in our curriculi.  But again, they don't say how, but they do say that they don't need to be worked on by themselves, they can be studied together (like combined social studies with, say language or history.)  And no one will be there to judge and flunk you out as a homeschooling parent.  No one.

 

Easy breezy as far as what is required of you.  You get to cover this how, when, where, for how long, how often, or if you want to skip it entirely.  The only people in the world paying any attention to methods or results are your husband and YOU!


"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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#7 of 11 Old 08-23-2011, 10:45 AM
 
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For me for planning, I just looked through the curriculum for each subject to see how much needed to be done and figured out how much we would need to get done each week.  Then I wrote down about how much we needed to get done each week for how long our school year is (how many pages of math, how many times a week for science and history, oh that's right we're throwing in French too).  I don't plan on exactly how much we need to get done each day and what times, because I don't want to have a schedule that specific yet, but I know what my goals are for the week.  Little things like his handwriting book and Explode the Code books we just alternate days, doing a few pages each day, and move on to the next book when we're done. 


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#8 of 11 Old 08-24-2011, 08:42 AM
 
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I second de-schooling. Also, consider workbooks as a back-up because your son may get bored or overwhelmed if the day is focused around workbooks.

 

You will definitely develop your own routine. What works for us is bouncing between active or outside type activities and academic or sit-down stuff.

 

Spend your energy for now on developing a routine with your little one, maybe with Library Day or Duck Park Day, Baking Day or Science Experiment Day, where you do your daily work with math problems or read-aloud time and the focal point of getting out to the art museum or what have you, maybe after lunch.

 

Also, you would be surprised how much can fit in at bedtime story or math drill while driving in the car, etc. Good luck! Feeling unprepared as you see the first days rolling around the corner is pretty normal, I think. This is our third year hs-ing, and I feel the same way :D


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#9 of 11 Old 08-24-2011, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post

I see you are WA.  Since you've already done some school, you've probably declared already.  (Legal age is 8.)  But you don't need any test or assessment until next September.  (An entire year away!)  And this will only be for your own benefit.  The state will not be watching and judging you. No one sees the results.  They are yours to evaluate as you will. Yes, the law says you are responsible to keep your kid at grade level.  But how, they don't say.

 

I mention this because where we homeschool, the people you need to assure are you and your husband.  That's it.  You are on board, so really, it's just your dh.  Ask him how he is going to judge homeschooling.  What are his expectations?  Is he familiar with our homeschooling laws?  They are pretty easy, really.  (For unschoolers like our family it's like a green light to do whatever we want, pretty much.)  

 

My sister led me to the opsi website for Washington.  Under "Online resources" you can navigate to find lists of what is expected at each grade level for each subject.  The don't really make it easy to just click on "2nd grade" and have the full list appear ready to print.  But the info is there for those who want it.  That can be helpful is you don't know where to begin.

 

To be clear, the guidelines on the website are for public school students, not homeschoolers.  We have 11 areas of study we are required to include in our curriculi.  But again, they don't say how, but they do say that they don't need to be worked on by themselves, they can be studied together (like combined social studies with, say language or history.)  And no one will be there to judge and flunk you out as a homeschooling parent.  No one.

 

Easy breezy as far as what is required of you.  You get to cover this how, when, where, for how long, how often, or if you want to skip it entirely.  The only people in the world paying any attention to methods or results are your husband and YOU!


You have no idea how much better this reply makes me feel...lol.  I haven't given our intent to HS form to the district yet, because I thought I needed to complete the qualifying course first.  I wanted to take the live course, but it's too close to my due date, and it's in Tacoma... so I'm opting to take the online course.  DS doesn't turn 8 until January, so I'm technically okay, right?  Or, should I just file the form now, and not worry that I haven't completed the course yet?

 

 

 


Xzavier - 9 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif    Julien - 5  modifiedartist.gif   Jayce - 3  moon.gif    Jaxon - 18mos  jog.gif

 

Hoping for a babygirl.gif in November!

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#10 of 11 Old 08-24-2011, 05:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xzaviers_mama View Post

You have no idea how much better this reply makes me feel...lol.  I haven't given our intent to HS form to the district yet, because I thought I needed to complete the qualifying course first.  I wanted to take the live course, but it's too close to my due date, and it's in Tacoma... so I'm opting to take the online course.  DS doesn't turn 8 until January, so I'm technically okay, right?  Or, should I just file the form now, and not worry that I haven't completed the course yet?

 


Check out the WHO website for specifics about the qualifying course, or ask your school district how (or if!) that's supposed to be legally included with your intent.  You don't need to present anything until his 8th birthday.  I was worried I would need a qualifying course, but my husband mentioned that he has 3 years of college, so we are not bothering.  We have 1.5 years to get our stuff together still, so I haven't fretted too much over the specifics.  Glad I could help take the weight off!

 


"Let me see you stripped down to the bone. Let me hear you speaking just for me."
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#11 of 11 Old 08-24-2011, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post




Check out the WHO website for specifics about the qualifying course, or ask your school district how (or if!) that's supposed to be legally included with your intent.  You don't need to present anything until his 8th birthday.  I was worried I would need a qualifying course, but my husband mentioned that he has 3 years of college, so we are not bothering.  We have 1.5 years to get our stuff together still, so I haven't fretted too much over the specifics.  Glad I could help take the weight off!

 


 The WHO site says:

 

The information you need to include on the form is your child(ren’s) name and age, parent’s name, address and indicate if qualifying to homeschool by using a supervising certificated teacher, sign and date. School districts are not legally authorized to vary the format of the Declaration of Intent or to request additional information.

 

It also says that we don't ever file a declaration of intent for children under 8, so that gives me plenty of time to complete the course.  thumb.gif

 


Xzavier - 9 REPlaySkateboard04HL.gif    Julien - 5  modifiedartist.gif   Jayce - 3  moon.gif    Jaxon - 18mos  jog.gif

 

Hoping for a babygirl.gif in November!

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