Part 1 - Daily routines
Part 2 - Teacher guilt
Part 3 - Learning styles
K.I.S.S. - Keep it Simple Sweetheart!
I have slightly modified this acronym in order to express what I have learned over this last year of homeschooling with diabetes. In 2015, aside from having diabetes I also gave birth to our 4th child. While recovering from the birth we took a month off from school and tried several different activities, schedules, methods, etc., to see what would work best for us.
My Bookworm was in first grade and Hotwheels was in preschool. After spending hours and hours and HOURS devising elaborate lesson plans we found that what we enjoyed best was sitting around reading living books and putting together notebooks based on what we were learning.
|Learning about spiders|
Sometimes the temptation is strong to buy every new fad that comes along, but really a ton of curriculum is not necessary. This year we are taking our own advice and are reducing the large pile of books down to a few simple items. Three notebooks (language, history, and science) and two folders (daily work and morning time). Our schedule will also be simplified this year. No more hourly divisions or 15 minute increments of stressful time keeping. Only short lessons, family learning, and a focus on the things that matter most.
Here is our simplified schedule:
Morning Time - Singing, Memory Work, Bible, Prayer, Drill
Time with Mom - subjects that need instruction from me will be taught during this time
Independent time - while I work with one child the other will do some seatwork and computer activities
Exploration Time - when we will tackle Art, Music, Science unit, Geography maps skills, and P.E.
This is a very, very, very SIMPLE SCHEDULE, but one that we needed desperately. Keeping fatigue at bay and babies out of trouble while preparing lunch and keeping the house from burning down around me made this kind of schedule a life-saver!
On Monday we are starting 2nd grade and K5 with this newly tweaked schedule. I still need to finish organizing some math manipulatives but here are some great resources on scheduling:
- Sarah Mackenzie writes about simplifying your schedule here and your curriculum here.
- Pam Barnhill also has lots of excellent planning resources on her blog.
However, don't be like me and waste a lot of your time reading about planning and very little of it in actual planning! Procrastination is not a positive character trait!
Keep It Simple Sweetheart!