Most of us are still reeling from the unexpected spin COVID-19 put on the last few months of this school year. And just when we thought things were looking up, we find ourselves in the midst of another set of trials and civil unrest.
It seems like a lifetime ago that I was planning out our curricula and wondering what the year would bring. I definitely didn’t expect all this!
That means it’s time to share our homeschool plans for the year ahead. (If you’re curious about what we’ve used in the past, check out this post which has links to all the previous years.)
Year 6 Snapshot
We’re really in the thick of it now. I’ll be homeschooling my fifth and second grade boys and their three year old sister (whose unreliable, dwindling naps should make for a crazy-making an interesting year).
A lot of homeschool bloggers like to post their yearly curriculum choices (like I’ve been doing in this series) for their readers. Over the years, I’ve found it incrediblyhelpful to see what other families are using.
But sometimes these “what we’re using this year” lists give the impression that choosing curriculum for the year is a once-and-done kind of thing.
Homeschooling is more than a method of education – it’s a lifestyle.
So it’s not surprising that there’s overlap with other areas of life when it comes to the best tools to use for the job. For example, when it comes to digital tools, I’ve found that all kinds of non-school-related apps have helped our homeschool.
If you’ve been following this series of posts, we’ve now caught up to real time. I wrote about the first four years retroactively because I started this blog just before we began our fifth year of homeschooling.
Since I can’t summarize a year that hasn’t happened yet, this snapshot will be a look at how our year has started so far. Later this school year I hope to post about lessons learned during Year 5… but I have to learn them first, so stay tuned.
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If you haven’t done so yet, read the first post in this series here and check out Our Curriculum Choices – Year 1, Year 2 and Year 3.
Year 4 Snapshot
While we were (and still are) far from having it all figured out, Year 4 was the first year I felt noticeably more confident in our homeschooling.
After several years of educating our kids at home, I now had some data to work with – some proof that this was working. We could look back on work from the years past and see tangible evidence that growth and learning were taking place. Phew!
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Well, it’s about time!
After years of historical knowledge going in one ear and out the other, I’ve finally found a system for learning and retaining history that works for me (and my kids, too)!
One of the key elements of this system is making timelines. (The other elements that work for us, notebooking and using chronological curricula, will be addressed in future posts).
I believe one of the main reasons I disliked and couldn’t retain history was because I’m an “overall picture” kind of gal and I had never been given the big picture of history – only out-of-order chunks. I memorized names and dates for tests and filled in the blanks on my worksheets and even did fun projects. But, to my frustration (as a child) and embarrassment (as an adult), I retained very little information about the history of our world.
I don’t even like playing Trivial Pursuit for fear that my historical ignorance will be exposed!
It’s been noted by some that I act a little like Dory from Finding Nemo and Finding Dory fame. I guess they think I’m a little forgetful and kind of distractible at times but I don’t really thi….
LOOK! Something shiny!!!
It’s… aluminum foil!!
I knew foil could keep my casseroles covered, among other household uses. And once I had kids and started scouring the interwebs for craft ideas, I came across a lot of foil-related art projects for the littles.
But, as it turns out, aluminum foil has been a surprisingly versatile supply for our homeschool studies, too!