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2009/2010 School Plans

August 1, 2009

It’s that time again!  Another ambitious school year plan.  Somedays I think we must be crazy and other days I can’t wait to get going.  🙂  One of the things that I love about homeschooling is the ability to teach each child at whatever level they may be at, but for simplicity’s sake, we’ll say A is in 3rd grade, C is in 1st grade, and D is a preschooler this year. 

We generally follow the guidelines for classical education as found in The Well-Trained Mind, although I love the process of researching and choosing  just which books we’ll use each year.  Here’s the plan:

For D:

Somedays he wants to do schoolwork, other days not.   He’s still just 4, so it’s ok either way.  For the days when he wants to sit at the table I have:

For some special learning time with Mommy, which Mommy is really trying to make more of a priority than last year (hint: work with the youngest one first on the schedule, not last) we will work through some Five in a Row units together, at least two per month.


 For C:

  • Reading: He’s on lesson 193 of The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading so we’ll finish that off and then rely heavily on the library to keep him supplied with books.  He really took off this past year and absolutely loves to read now.
  • Grammar: Growing With Grammar 1 (edited to add:  After working through the first week of school, I have decided to either supplement this with First Language Lessons or replace it all together.  This child just cannot do that much writing!)
  • Writing: Writing with Ease 1 for narration and copywork–His penmanship improved dramatically last year and the goal this year is to increase his endurance and confidence in writing.
  • Math: He’ll continue working through Singapore Math 1A and then 1B.  I’m also hoping to include more math games this year. (edited to add:  We will also be supplementing with Developmental Math for extra practice.)


 For A:

  • Math: Finish Singapore Math 3A and then go on to 3B and possibly 4A, supplementing with Challenging Word Problems and continued memorization of the times tables
  • Grammar: Growing with Grammar 3
  • Writing: Finish Writing with Ease 2 (currently on week 23) and then move on to WWE 3
  • Spelling: I’m making up my own spelling program this year using spelling rules, word lists, and ideas from The ABC’s and All Their Tricks, Natural Speller, and McGuffey’s Speller among other resources.  My plan has not quite solidified yet.
  • Latin: Latina Christiana I and Ludere Latine I spread across the next two years


All of our other subjects are done together as much as possible, although in looking over our science curriculum, C may have a hard time with it, but will always enjoy the experiments.  We’re using Elemental Science Chemistry plans with Fizz, Bubble, and Flash, Atoms and Molecules, and supplementing with a few fun books and this really great poster I found on the periodic table.  We will also try to add in some Outdoor Hour Challenges when we can.  First though we have about five weeks to finish up our astronomy study and we get to spend some time in Bryce Canyon later this month stargazing where it’s really dark at night. 


For History:

History is still our favorite subject and as we’re on year 3 of the WTM 4-yr history rotation we will focus on both world and American history during 1600-1850 A.D.  Our main text will be Story of the World volume 3 and the accompanying Activity Guide, but will also supplement with:

  • Homeschool in the Woods’  Time Travelers CDs on Colonial Life, The Revolutionary War, and The Early 19th Century to beef up the American history
  • The Rainbow Book of American History
  • Genevieve Foster’s Birthdays of Freedom, 1620, and George Washington’s World
  • Dover coloring books
  • Finger Puppets of the Signers of the Constitution
  • Wonders of Old timeline CD
  • and lots and lots and lots of library books along with a few others that we own on the time period


  • Literature: We all like to read a LOT!  Most of our literature is suggested in the SOTW Activity Guide, but I like to read classic children’s novels aloud as well and we almost always have a book on tape going in the car.  For free reading, I try to have the older two boys alternate between books that are history or science tie-ins and quality literature taken from a number of reading lists out there.  Try being the operative word here!  It’s hard to keep up with their appetite for books. 
  • Art: Art was a bust last year, so we’ll try again this year to get through the artists and projects in Artistic Pursuits K-3, book 2.  Both A and C also want to draw more so we’ll alternate with Drawing with Children lessons as well.
  • Memory Work: We also have never done much memory work, but this year I want to work at it at least a few minutes each day.  I will post a more complete list later, but it will include scripture mastery verses, poetry, U. S. presidents, and at least part of the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble to the Constitution.  My main resource is Living Memory by Andrew Campbell.
  • Scripture Study: We are following the LDS Seminary schedule so this year we’ll focus on The Book of Mormon and supplement with Scripture Study for LDS Families: Book of Mormon , Gospel Art Kit and the new Gospel Art Book, and the Book of Mormon timeline
  • Music, while highly important to us, will be not anything too formal this year.  C has Kindermusik class, D has Kindermusik class, A has piano lessons, they hear me practice my cello, they hear my cello students, and they come to most of my symphony concerts.  We all get a lot of music.  So instead of composer of the month studies, we will just listen for fun this year.

Wow!  It looks a lot more organized than I feel at the moment!  We’re easing into things a bit though.  We’ll start with grammar, math, history, and science on August 3.  (I can’t believe it’s August already!)  Then next week we’ll add in a Five in a Row unit.  Latin begins the week after that, and in September we add music classes and orchestra rehearsals back into the schedule.  We’ll see how it goes from there!


Visit Darcy’s blog beginning Monday, August 3, to see what other homeschoolers are planning for the year.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. August 2, 2009 6:08 am

    I like Natural Speller too. Your son may be too young for the SimplyCharlotteMason Spelling Wisdom, but keep it in mind for coming years. I have really enjoyed it.

    Your planning motivates me to get on the ball. You do a great job!

  2. Tracy permalink
    August 3, 2009 11:15 am

    I think I have read your blog before…I want to play the Cello in heaven one day! 🙂

    We loved ETC!!!

  3. August 3, 2009 12:28 pm

    OK… I seem to be following Tracy around LOL (she’s a friend of mine).

    Anyways… I’m doing Before FIAR and we also do Artistic Pursuits.

  4. August 3, 2009 12:32 pm

    Enjoyed reading your plans- we are using a lot of the same materials so I’ll look forward to reading your blog. We aren’t starting till next month though- still trying to finish up last year! Babies do wreak havoc on a routine!

  5. August 3, 2009 1:28 pm

    Thanks for giving us a “look” at your year. I am using Artistic Pursuits this year and am soo looking forward to it.

  6. August 3, 2009 3:03 pm

    First – congrats on your pregnancy! I am so excited for your family.

    We have some overlap in our schedules, I noticed. We really liked SOTW 1-3, so you’ve got a great year ahead of you! It was my favorite of all the time periods. There’s so much great reading on that time period.

    Thanks for participating in the NBTS Blog Hop!

  7. August 3, 2009 7:43 pm

    Great photos of what you are doing. I love to take photos of our school books, but never know what to do with them. I should of put photos up for my blog post today too.

    Anyway, a lovely post and such a well thought out plan. Thanks for sharing on the Blog Hop.

  8. August 3, 2009 10:51 pm

    I am sooo not there yet, but next week I hope to follow your wise example and get school planned. It just seems so overwhelming right now, but our kids are pretty close to the same age and you have some great ideas….so….

  9. August 4, 2009 8:35 pm

    Oooo, where did you get that poster? I have to get us one!

  10. August 8, 2009 2:37 pm

    wow, thank you for the link to the outdoor hour challenges! that is a new website to me, and i plan to make lots of use of it.

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