The first day back to homeschool is in the books! We finished up moments ago and I thought that I would give a little rundown of our plans for this year. We have a third and fifth grader. My four year old will go to a nursery school nearby a few mornings a week and join in with us the remainder of the time.
*this post contains links, but none of these items are sponsored, they're just products I enjoy.
We absolutely loved using Waldorf Essentials last year and are using that as the backbone of our schooling again this year. Waldorf can be overwhelming to newbies, like us, so we've heeded the advice to layer things in. We are getting better at form drawing, wet on wet painting, handwork, improving our Main Lesson Book Pages (borders!) and incorporating more rhymes, stories with props and math games into our circle time. Without all of those things, it's hard to stretch out the main lessons into a school day. We still feel like we need a little bit more.
Our little bit more will be Brave Writer Arrow. Our plan is to read aloud the bulk of it with assigned independent reading sections. Last year I had the boys read everything independently (Quiver of Arrows for the second grade), but now I realize it is meant to be a family read aloud. I was excited about the selections for Arrow this year (and the party school ideas now included), so we went ahead and bought the year. Last year I let the boys choose selections each month, but this year we are going to work through them together. We also use other elements of Brave Writer throughout our year, like Friday Freewrites and Poetry Teatimes. It's a wonderful resource.
Last year we absolutely loved the Beautiful Feet Books Early American History bundle. I think I will always look back on that course in our first year of homeschool as something quite magical. We were hoping to find a Medieval Studies course that was similar, but the BFB course is for older children, and I think it wouldn't hold the same level of attraction trying to push it with younger kids. Well, I thought, I have a Medieval Studies Minor, I can figure out a course of study with picture books that will be charming and fun and educational! I spent the summer poring over children's literature about the Middle Ages and I think I have a fun course of study. We are hoping to do History about two days a week.
Other than that, we throw in a little handwriting work, a little real world math, a little Shakespeare memorization, some typing and art and come up with pretty full and fun days.
Our rhythm looks something like this:
8-9 Breakfast, get dressed, make beds
9-11 Circle Time, Main Lessons, snack
11-11:30 Nature Walk/recess
11:30-12:30 Finish Up Main Lessons, handwriting or typing
12:30-1:30 - Lunch, Free Time
2:30-3:30 Reading/Independent learning/handwork
Specials are Arrow on Monday, History on Tues and Wed, Art on Thurs, Poetry Teatime on Friday
It is a rhythm, not a schedule, so we do not stop things or drag things out to fill time slots. It's just a rough flow of how the day goes. Sometimes a doctor's appointment or a field trip completely upsets the schedule. We just go with it : )