Doing School Easy

January 12, 2010 at 12:23 am Leave a comment

So it turns out I have more than 70 books for our six months of early American history. Many are picture books from when we did this topic four years ago and my daughter was 5 (but reading at a 3rd grade level).

Anyway, I got all the books typed up in chronological order and realized we have almost nothing about the Civil War. We have lots about the Revolution. Why don’t we have books about the Civil War? I don’t know. The only novel I have is Behind Rebel Lines. I can get some more online for free, but I don’t prefer printing out books. What do you read for the Civil War? We do have many books about slavery, just not the war itself.

So, sometimes my mishmashhash curriculum is spotty in places. That’s one reason I love lapbooks. It’s given us a way to harness all the info we get here and there, especially the ton of stuff online, and organize it into our own book that we can keep and read and learn from.

I mentioned we did early American history four years ago. I decided on our plan of homeschooling when my daughter was a toddler. I tend to be a planner 🙂 I decided it on my own without having read anything about that way of doing school, but I did choose it because I wanted everyone to be studying the same topic no matter their age.

We don’t do 4 years going through all history. For instance next year we will be doing geography and cultures. The other years are ancient history and 20th century.

For science we do physics, biology, earth science and we have done animals, but next time around it will be chemistry.

I’ve mentioned about how we school 6 days a week and 52 weeks a year. I can do that because we school easy. Our school days only have to be 3 hours a day because we have so many days. Part of our school time is going on a family walk. We also have noisy school time which is when “the littles” are awake. The big kids can do their thinking games and books, piano, art and things on the computer.

Then we have quiet school time for two hours when “the littles” take their nap. They do math from textbooks and then whatever “writing” school I give them which includes their history or science. Sometimes it doesn’t get done in two hours, but usually they can finish or at least within half an hour.

My kids work independently. We are all together so I’m right there if someone has a question and the kids can interact with each other and me when they’re doing their history since they are doing the same or similar things, but I don’t ever sit there and “teach” them anything. And again, lapbooks are a great way to direct them so they can do something with the information they are reading. (I do read aloud to my kids–except the oldest, she doesn’t like that anymore–but that’s just for fun in the evenings and they get to pick the books.)

So, that’s how we do it here. Most of the materials I make up are done after the kids are in bed and I’m waiting for my husband to get home. It’s easy and fun for me and helps me stay awake!

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Explorers Jamestown — Mayflower

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