Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Scheduling question

This is an opinion question for all of you homeschoolers out there. If we finish a particular subject or subjects, should we wait until we've finished all of them before moving to the next grade or just move right on?

The circumstances are this: We started first grade math a few months ago--December, I think. We're three weeks away from being done with her primer in reading, but we're only one week away from being done with science (less if she wants to do more over the weekend, which is more likely than you'd think). If we wait on everything, it puts us starting our new books the week before Holy Week--not a good time to adjust to new academics.
If we start science by itself, we'll be two or three weeks into it before Holy Week and primer completion, so we'll only be adjusting to one new subject. Or we could take some time away from all of our standard texts, enjoy a kind of Spring Break, and start all afresh after Easter.

I do realize there's nothing that says we can't take an Easter Break regardless of where we are academically. I doubt that would be a time I'd want to focus on a completely new curriculum.

The question is phasing in first grade as we finish the kindergarten material, or go into a holding pattern with the completed subjects until all are finished, then launching first grade all at once. I'm wondering how big a deal it is to get all of your new books on the same day. I'm leaning toward phasing in, but I'd like some opinions.

Least of all these considerations is we scheduled our school year start in May with our umbrella school. Then again, it's their job to flex to meet us rather than the other way around.



At 5:51 AM, Blogger Milehimama said...

One of the great benefits of homeschooling is that each child can work at their pace for each subject. So a poor speller can be in first grade spelling, but if he excels with numbers, be in third grade math at the same time.
I'd just keep going. You're used to clearly delineated grades - but your kids don't know that's how everyone does it! Phasing in is great I think - a perk of homeschooling. And it's easier to get used to one new thing at a time - unless your curriculum is completely integrated, meaning that a child MUST be on history lesson 13 when they are on science lesson 13 because it all ties into Math lesson 13...
You don't want to wait so long they get bored, lose interest, or forget things. If you are worried about starting a new text right before Holy Week, find some quickie unit studies online to do for that week - it could be a refreshing "break" from regular school but will still keep their minds engaged.
For science, I like You have to sign up to become a member, but it's free. The Theme sheets are more science oriented, and then you can click on "Basics" sheets and select worksheets by grade that tie into the theme (such as ocean life, dinosaurs, etc.)
Or you could do some household science - start plants for the garden, etc.
Or you could have an "intermission" - don't do science at all and spend the week on building, or baking, or some other subject not worthy of 9 weeks but important and fun nonetheless.

Mama Says


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