I’ve made my first “lesson plan” for Henry’s homeschool, to begin this upcoming week. I suppose I want to get more focused since school is starting for my husband and for the whole county as well, and it seems like a good time. I used this planner (link), downloaded for free, after buying a $20 planning book I don’t need and downloading a $3 planner that I hate from a website I love (simplemom.net). The $20 planning book is the one I always used as a teacher, and I loved that it had big spaces for planning, since I usually taught several different types of classes each day and needed the space. This year’s copy doesn’t have as much space, but I don’t need it anymore. Instead of using it as a planner, however, I’m using it as a sort of journal to record what did happen instead of what I want to happen.
I have the following categories listed on my HS planner for now: Math, Reading/Writing, Science/History, Art/Music, and Field Trips. I split science and history and art and music because I won’t do both each day unless Henry is interested. Right now Henry is getting interested in science. I pulled up our local library’s website and the “kids’ library” page has a lovely set of thumbnails showing the various categories of books they have. I pulled up the science thumbnails and asked Henry which ones looked interesting to him. He chose “The Human Body” and “The Solar System.” We’re starting with the solar system and he’s excited about creating a model of the planets. He says his best friend Lukka will be able to be the rocket and fly around among the planets. I’m beginning to notice that it’s all about people for Henry!
For phonics and reading this week, we’ll just play a few games I found on Pinterest. I imagine this will be our curriculum for quite a while, since Henry is not interested in workbooks. I may try to get him to sound out the next Bob book if he’s willing. He was very excited last week about watching the reading LeapFrog DVDs, so perhaps we’ll watch those again.
Henry’s Math-U-See materials came in, and he’s already been playing with the manipulative blocks. Will he want to use them in the way the curriculum sets out? I’m not sure yet. Will he be ready to write the answers down on the sheets? I’m not sure yet. I’m going to take it really slowly. I don’t want to make him hate math since he’s such a fan. Over lunch the other day he asked me math questions by counting backward by fives (“Mommy, what’s 25 plus 25? What’s 25 plus 20? What’s 25 plus 15?”) He loves math patterns.
For science, I planned to just do nature walks this week, but Henry wants to get started learning about the solar system, so I printed out a few things about planets from the internet. For art/music, I’ll just provide art materials and let him freely create, we’ll play with the guitar, and one day we’ll make cloud dough. For field trips, we’ll be doing a homeschool playdate at the park on Monday and on Friday we’ll most likely go to the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens or to the Children’s Museum.
I spent a great deal of time planning, printing, and preparing for this week’s activities, even though we’re not really doing that much. I imagine from now on my weekends will be filled with planning, but I enjoy it. The next step is to make sure that I don’t get upset when things don’t go as planned!