Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Flexibly Organizing Your Homeschool

Here's the post you've all been waiting for! I know you've all been there. You get that motivation over the summer to get all of your lessons lined out for the new year. You print copies, make folders, gather supplies, and mark up your calendar. After about two months, you have scratched out and thrown out all of your hard work because things just didn't go as planned. Can you say frustration. While this is all with good intent, this is not the way to start off your homeschool year.

I, however, can not function without some semblance of organization. After trial and error, trial and error, I finally devised a way that works perfectly for me. It is simple, flexible and still keeps us very well organized. Here's how I do it:

1) Remember our discussion about time slots? I use this information to figure out how many classes of a particular subject I will have. For example, if I decided that we would do math every day and school 170 days, then I will have 170 math lessons to plan. Sometimes the number of lessons is decided by the curriculum you use.

2) I make a printout that simply numbers however many lessons (170) and a blank spot to fill in what subject we will cover, and page numbers or other activities.

3) I then, over the summer, take each subject individually and look through the books. I divide it up into however many lessons I need and decide how many pages or what projects I will do for each lesson. For example, on day 27 we might do math pages 78-79 covering double digit addition, and a flash-card review.

4) Then I don't do anything until the week before! Each week I sit down and plan for the next school week. I look at each subject and put the next weeks lessons on the planner. That way, if we aren't progressing as far in Reading as we are in Spelling, I can change the week's schedule to accommodate that. If we have a dentist appointment on Tuesday followed by Homeschool Co-op, then I can plan to do Tuesday's lessons on Monday. It allows the freedom to plan each week, or day, as it comes and still keep track of how you are progressing in each individual subject. This works fabulous for me. If you are looking for a new method to getting organized but need to stay flexible (because, say, you are a homeschooling youth pastor's wife) then try this out!

What methods have worked for you??

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