Wednesday, August 21, 2013

How I Homeschool: Lesson Planning

It has been requested by a few beautiful ladies that I share more of how I homeschool. You're in luck! I love to homeschool and I love to talk about it with friends. So feel free to chat with me, ask questions, share ideas!

This will be broken down into a few topics over the next week or so:

Lesson Planning
Curriculum: Kindergarten (Year 0) and Year 3
The Potter's House (letting God sculpt our days and be the center)
Morning Gatherings
Projects we will include this year (art, handicrafts, notebooks)
Nature Studies
Life in a Day: what our daily life looks like

Today, we will start with lesson planning!

I usually over think things to the point where it overwhelms me and then I get stuck and do nothing. Please tell me I'm not the only one? ha

This is our 4th year of homeschoolilng and every year I grab a lesson plan book and fill up the first few weeks with what I plan to get done and then I fall behind. After that I realize I'm writing the same thing over and over again....Monday: bible, math, reading, science or history. Tuesday: bible, math, reading, science or get the idea. I'll throw in a few project ideas, or verses or chapters to read, but that's about it.

It's complicated and stressful when I fall behind because something came up and we didn't get all of our Tuesday work, but am now staring at what needs to be done on Wednesday too. So, this year I decided to do my own thing and simplify. What may work for one may not work for another. I'm just sharing what works for me.

So instead of buying a $20 planner, I grabbed this $2 notebook and called it a day.


It's small enough to grab and go if needed. It's filled with book lists I can take to the library, and projects and supplies I can grab while at the store. All in one place. I know planners have places for that, but the thing about this one is that it's laid out the way my mind works haha, so it works for me.

When you open it I have our daily schedule written out.
*this is ideal but doesn't always happen*


I will go into more detail about our schedule on another post.

Then I have the tabs. These are sticky tabs you can pick up in the office supply section of most stores. The first tab is Brighton's Kindergarten tab.


This is where I put the Math games and activities about what I'd like him to know throughout the year. I will just start at the top of my list and play games and find activities for whatever it is we are working on at the moment. On the back of the page I have specific games and activities I have found on Pinterest or in books.
That being said, I do NOT over do it. I write out the projects I think will benefit us most and I know I can get done without a hassle.

I write out lessons I'd like to get done with him in literacy, plus a few extras we can do if we make it to that point. Again, I'll share more on my curriculum post.

And then I have a literature list of books we'll read together that will make library trips and amazon orders much simpler. I leave space to add to it...but not too much space!

Next tab is Tristin's goals for year 2/3.


His subjects are divided by tabs, and what I'd like to get done and use in each one. Brighton does participate in some of these.

Morning Gatherings (which include habits, memory work, fine arts, geography)
Language Arts
Nature Study


In the rest of the notebook is room for me to take notes, write out field trip ideas, do record keeping, and whatever else I feel I want to add.

I LOVE this notebook. It's simple and easy to get an overview of the entire year. I simply open it and choose what we'll work on that week, and get it ready before hand. We will work on it until we're ready to move on.


Liz said...

Love this! I can't wait to read more specifics about your school day!

Ellie said...

This looks great! Hope your year starts great!!

Tricia said...

Looks great! We switched from using a planning book to using a notebook this year too! So much simpler and easy to adapt to our specific needs. Hope your homeschool year is fantastic!!!

Linda said...

I used to keep a binder but it was almost more of a journal of what we did each day, than a planner. I would just date a loose leaf paper and record what we got accomplished that day. Until this year I haven't really had to plan lessons because our curriculum ( does that for me, and keeps excellent records. I found that this year, with more extra-curricular activities and transitioning between middle and high school that I am having to do a lot more planning. We have already gotten off of my planned schedule which is totally frustrating! Your idea of the notebook is a great way to make a planner that is set up for your homeschool. I think I might take a page from your book, so to speak. I'll pick up a big notebook tomorrow and see if I can make a planner that will work for us. Thanks for the great idea!


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