Next year is a bit scary for me. My oldest son will officially be in "ninth grade." While we use grades a bit loosely around here, I still figure I need to spend the next 4-5 years getting him ready for "real life." My goals for the next few weeks will be to sit down with hubby & figure out what B14 needs to accomplish in order to graduate from our homeschool. It will not only include academics but also life skills. Any tips for those who have done this before would be greatly appreciated. Our state does not have a set of standards for high schools - each school can set their own - so I don't even have a state outline to go use.
Perhaps B14 is looking in to his future?
My middle son will be entering "fifth" grade while my baby is going in to "second." I'm not sure how all of that happened as it feels like just yesterday I was changing all of their diapers! Now B14 towers over me (although, I admit it's fantastic to have someone tall in the house all the time to reach things I can't, but don't tell him that!) and his shoe size is half a size larger than his father! Yeah, growing up fast seems to be the thing to do around here.
So my rough plan for next year is:
J7 - Second Grade
- Five in a Row Volume 1
- Math-U-See (finish current book - Primer - and move right to Alpha)
- Alpha-Phonics for reading lessons
- Math Drill using various programs we have
- Explode the Code (We finished all the "Get Ready" books this year.)
- Handwriting - various books/online pages
- Piano Lessons
N10 - Fifth Grade
- Math-U-See (moving on to Gamma)
- Piano Lessons
- Independent Reading
J7 thinks he's on top of the world sometimes.
All of the boys will also need a few other subjects that I plan to teach together as much as possible. Those include spelling. I'm leaning towards Sequential Spelling - any thoughts? I know they have a DVD program - we were able to use a sample - and I really liked how that worked.
I also discovered a video based grammar program. It seemed a bit cheesy at times but also very solid. I liked that I could purchase individual lessons and stream them. A good way to try it out. Obviously I still need to make some decisions.
I do know that we'll be doing the follow subjects together:
- Bible - most likely using Apologia's Who Is God?. I've had the book for two years and need to use it. Although, I see that they now offer a coloring book and notebooking journal. I'll have to think about adding those to the mix. The coloring book would be great to have on hand for J7 and the journals would be good for the older two boys. We'll also work out way through reading a book of the Bible. We did this over the course of this year and it worked well. It covered Bible plus it also helped the boys with reading out loud. They both do this well, but it's always good to practice.
- Institute for Excellence in Writing - This was a TOS Crew review item this last year. It was excellent and we'll continue working our way through. I may add in some Understanding Writing as well to bump things up even more. Writing is a weakness here.
- We are planning to join a science co-op that will run only in the fall (August-November). The high school children will be working on the experiments in the Apologia Biology book together. Since many of them have younger siblings, we'll also be using Considering God's Creation for the elementary/middle school age siblings who will be there as well. Anyone younger than that will have fun play dates - hopefully!
- My sister & I did a co-op this year covering music and art (application and appreciation). This coming year I think our focus will be on geography. We haven't decided yet if we'll be focusing on world geography or United States geography. Any suggestions? We have Around the World in 180 Days so we may just use that to focus on world geography.
- I'd also like to really focus on sign language this year as our foreign language. It's always been a fascination of mine and I've been gathering materials now for some time. This year I'm planning to actually use them!
- Lastly I have volume 4 of Tapestry of Grace. My plan at the moment is to use that for our history basis and book list. It is a great literature list. I'm not sure how much of it I will implement since it's a full course of its own, but I do plan to use it as an outline for history and literature.
His future is so bright he has to wear shades!
So those are my thoughts for the upcoming year. Any suggestions? What am I missing? Thoughts? Thankfully I still have four week to get it all figured out.