Or....maybe not. ;)
You're still just not seeing the WHOLE picture or how it all goes together.
These two tips will help fit some of the final pieces together in your mind. That picture will begin to form more wholly and beautifully!
You're searching everywhere, reading everything, trying to figure out how to keep homeschooling your children. There's so many systems, and methods, and suggestions your brain is cramping.
Design your own game plan that combines methods into what works for YOU.
Go to your favorite resources and people to find the plans and suggestions that most appeal to you.
NOT what you think you should be doing. What you think would work FOR your family. Pick what will fit and throw the rest out.
Some resources I've used
Blueprint Homeschooling -- Some serious goodness here!
Plan to Be Flexible -- Love!
Your Retreat: A Guide to Giving Yourself a Personal Planning Day -- So encouraging!
[Tweet "Your #homeschool plan should be designed for your family, not someone else's. "]
Write/draw it all out so you can see it.
Here's how I've done that.
I will say that I don't have pictures for you and I know how much those help. The huge poster I had filled out got smashed in our move. I just keep forgetting to grab a new poster every time I go to the store. Which I did tonight, I eyed the posters and thought, I think I need one of those... and kept on wheeling through.
But, I DID get to see Captain Hook (minus the hook).
Take out a piece of paper for each kid, even the baby.
- Write their name at the top
- List out every subject they do
- Underneath each subject list each piece of curriculum or resource you use (within reason)
- Grab some highlighters (or something similar)
- Highlight every piece of curriculum that requires Mom to be with them when they use it. Use the same color for this across all the papers.
- Highlight every piece of curriculum that needs some, but not full, one-on-one time. Medium help from mom (give instructions, help set it up, etc.); use the same color.
- Highlight every piece of curriculum that they can do on their own 100%. Again, use the same color. It may be helpful to indicate how long this task generally takes.
Now is the mind cramp time. Don't despair. I got through this with some major undiagnosed brain fog and pregnancy brain. Meaning, even if you're at 5% of your game, you've got this. You just may stare at the paper a little longer. ;)
This is where I grabbed lots of scratch paper. Set out your plan (that you set up) and schedule. You can do this with routines rather than schedules.
Look at all your kids, how many things can each do alone, with you, and with some help? The younger ones will need more of you, obviously. Pick a child and a subject. Just do the first on the list.
Now, when that child is doing this curriculum what could your other children be doing?
If Captain is doing his math (he does alone, unless he is struggling), I can have Little Miss working on her spelling and vocabulary words nearby. I sit with The Animal and do his reading lesson.
I keep going through each child and putting them in work slots.
We usually do school in chunks of time. I break down our subjects to be efficient and and put about 3-4 work slots in one chunk of time.
[wc_row][wc_column size="one-fourth" position="first"]
The Captain - 4th
Little Miss - 2nd
The Animal - 1st
- Play with Sweet Cheeks
[/wc_column][wc_column size="one-fourth" position="last"]
Sweet Cheeks - PreK-ish & The Baby (1)
- Color (Baby sits with me)
- Reading (Baby plays or has a snack)
- Plays (both)
- Plays with The Animal (Mom plays with Baby)
Then, I go through the next chunk of time and repeat.
I put each block of time on a post-it. This way, if something comes up, I can shift the block of time around and know that when I'm helping The Animal with math, the older two should be working on their spelling. It takes out the day-to-day thinking for me. I just look and it tells me what would be best for the other children to do if I'm helping another on a certain subject.
Test and tweak as necessary. Always be realistic with yourself.
Large families have been blessed with many children just eager to love and be loved. There always seems like at least one child slips through the cracks no matter how hard you try.
Each week, set an appointment with each child to meet with them.
You'll check in with them, chat, and ask questions.
- How are they doing this week?
- What's been hard for them?
- What's been enjoyable?
- What have they learned?
- What do they need help with?
- What would they like to tell you about?
This is a perfect opportunity to go over any missed answers on work that's been turned in, anything they're struggling with, and to review any particular material you want to go over.
You can take this time to teach them something that's just for them. You can work on a special project together. My eldest son and I work on some of his Cub Scout stuff to pass off. With The Animal, we do some fun math games. Little Miss loves working on art projects together.
You can make this appointment as short or as long as you'd like. You don't have to do everything I've listed. Just set an appointment, put it in your calendar, and sit down and spend time with them.
This brought me a lot of peace when I started it. I have time to really connect and talk to each child, to spend it in a meaningful way, that I hope will foster and grow our relationship as parent and child that will bless us for years to come.
In Plan to Be Flexible, Alicia even talks about setting up a yearly date, or appointment, with each child to evaluate your Homeschooling. She's got tons of great questions and worksheets for this invaluable date.
[Tweet "Crave consistent one-on-one time with your children? Check out this easy #tip"]
Tip #4: Design your own plan + write it out
Tip #3: Set an appointment with each child
You are nearly there! Your homeschooling is going to take off and be just what you need it to be for your family and yourself. You'll find yourself giggling with relief.
Get the last two tips tomorrow!! Wahoo!