Our homeschooling has been very up and down so far this year, and I committed to too much this term. I will scale back next term. However, for those who are interested, this is what our week looks like at the moment:
Mondays start with Drama King going to ATYP for his drama class. He usually catches the bus into Sydney with my husband. Reptile Boy and I take Princess to her daycare a little after Drama King leaving, catch the bus and ferry later and walk round to Walsh Bay to collect Drama King. We do some maths and spelling on the ferry.
We have lunch while in transit, and then go over to the Yuumii headquarters for art class. Pokemon Boy will have either been in bed or working in the morning, and joins the other kids there.
I go back home to prepare for science class later in the week. The kids join me before dinner.
Tuesdays start with taking Princess to daycare again. Then this is the day when I stay at home with the boys and focus on whatever we are working on at the time. If there’s nothing special going on, I schedule maths, music practice, handwriting and HSiE (Human Society and its Environment). I’m trying to get all the boys to work on related topics at the same time. This term’s topic is Environment. I just differentiate the work so that it is appropriate for their skills and grade level: if you look at the syllabus it’s easy to find related topics that span across Stage 1, Stage 2 and Stage 3. It might change a little when Pokemon Boy gets to high school level, but he works on his own a lot of the time anyway.
Pokemon Boy has been doing some science classes over in Marrickville with Fizzics Education. On Tuesdays he might be over there, or he might join in with whatever we are doing. If he’s travelling, he has to take the rest of the work with him. I learned pretty early on that if we took a ‘day off’ every time we had an excursion, we didn’t get through enough work. I have also found it is easy to work on the train and ferry because the boys have fewer displacement activities available. We bring snacks with us but once they are gone, there is no more going to the pantry for food, as can sometimes happen at home.
The afternoons are for me to rest (a little) and the boys to play for a while, then do their projects. Pokemon Boy is working on a Minecraft mod, and setting up his own Minecraft server. Drama King is learning about the Vikings and creating a short comic strip featuring Loki and a space alien guy.
Reptile Boy started off doing a Pirates project but went off that, and is now completing a lapbook about Tortoises, Turtles and Terrapins (purchased from KnowledgeBox Central on Currclick). I recently went to our storage facility and managed to bring back some of his reference books including a wonderful DK book about Oceans and his Animal Encyclopedia. He also borrowed a few books from Mosman library so I think he will be busy for a while.
I recently signed Pokemon Boy up for the Young Adult book club at Manly Library. He missed the first meeting but they will be meeting monthly on Tuesday afternoons. Hopefully he will make it to the next one.
Wednesdays are the day for our nanny Sarah to take over. She does what she can helping the younger boys to continue with their projects, and Pokemon Boy generally keeps himself to himself. I go off to teach science as Nurture Learning and then either catch up with friends or do all my errands in the afternoon.
Thursdays are our SHRIMPS days. Hooray! We all enjoy meeting up with friends in the park. We sometimes go to the library on the way, then we catch the ferry and train to Marrickville. All the boys have work to do on the train – usually spelling, maths and music theory. When we come back we have Poetry Teatime and then the kids play while I prepare dinner.
On Fridays I madly try to tidy up as we have some other homeschooled children coming round to do science. This time my boys join in (usually with quite a bit of protestation from Pokemon Boy). Friday afternoons are for catching up with whatever they haven’t finished during the week, or for working on projects, or just for playing.
Of course, if something comes up like watching Bell Shakespeare for free, or going to the beach with friends, we go with it. I tend to appropriate Tuesdays to prepare for any excursions we might have coming up, so the HSiE doesn’t get done as quickly as I might hope.
In my next post I’ll talk about our favourite resources for each subject.