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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Organizing My Homeschool Life.

I am an organizational freak by nature, I have labels on my labels. Well ok, not quite but my normal self likes to be organized and before our recent move my house was in chaos. Hard to operate very well when surrounded by mess!

I am a big believer that everything belongs on its place, but lets be honest there are plenty of times when I derailed from this belief. One of my bigger weaknesses? Follow through. The old " I can do that tomorrow" gets me a lot more often than I care to admit :(

So this year I am TRYING to implement a little more organization. I have my planner ready to go. It serves a dual purpose: homeschool planning and regular everyday stuff. I got mine from http://www.michelequigley.com/store/ and added the homeschool planning pages. It is the small one I can carry with me everywhere I go. I am so happy with this planner.

If you need a planner you can check out the above link or get plenty of free printables here

I am also trying to assemble my homeschool room, not quite there but I'm working on it :)










I decided that instead of having every.single.book.out I would only get out the books I would need for the entire school year. The rest of the books will go into clear totes in the utility book. I am organizing bookshelves and bins by subject and labeling said bins.

I am also organizing my favorite homeschool curriculum websites and not keeping anymore than the ones I ACTUALLY USE. I have gotten my computer to run faster by deleting some bookmarks. About 343 or so, not many you know?

In case you are curious here are some of my favorite websites :

Charlotte Mason Style Curriculum
https://www.chcweb.com/catalog/

Solid Catholic Curriculum
http://www.setonbooks.com/
http://olrs.com/
http://olvs.org/

Classical Education Emphasis
http://www.kolbe.org/
http://www.memoriapress.com/

Resources
http://www.rainbowresource.com/
http://www.adoremusbooks.com/
http://www.catholicicing.com/

Helpful Sites for Mommy (because we cannot afford to be crazy)
http://www.catholicsistas.com/
http://thekennedyadventures.com/free-printables/
http://raisinglittlesaints.blogspot.com/
http://catholicmom.com/
http://www.mybrokenfiat.com/blog
http://catholicmomconfessions.blogspot.com/

My homeschool this year will keep all core subjects (religion, Math, Science, Language Arts and History) and will rotate at 9 weeks intervals between Physical Education, Music and Art.

After all is done, I am hoping to keep a system in place so that we can run smoothly. I know I want to be organized but I still want to be flexible for the occasional monkey wrench life throws our way ;)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Home Schooling-The What, Why, How....

So many people have questions in regards to homeschooling. There are people who have written excellent articles in this regard but for now I am answering some of the basic questions you may have about homeschooling.


WHAT is homeschooling?

Webster's dictionary describes homeschool as follows:
Verb1.home-school - educate (one's children) at home instead of sending (them) to a school; "The parents are home-schooling their daughter"


It really can be summed up in that sentence. We are simply choosing to educate our children ourselves, at home. Or outside, or in the park, well you get the gist ;)


WHY homeschool?

I think this question is usually well intentioned but the answers will vary from person to person. Some of the people ask this question because they don't understand why we would choose to educate our children at home when there are at least two schools down the road. Like I said, answers will vary. For us, and many other Christians, we felt called to educate our children. We heard that conviction loud and clear! We attended informational meetings, researched online, spoke with individuals who had done it and pray and discerned. We had to wait a few years for my husband to discern but once we did, we jumped head first lol.



 In our home we are first and foremost Christian educators, teaching our children the tenets of our Catholic faith. We believe in "instructing them in the way they should go..." Proverbs 22:6  second we believe in providing them with sound academic instruction, with emphasis in writing, reading, arithmetic, science and history as well as physical exercise, and the knowledge of the arts (music, painting, etc.). We believe in doing all things for the glory of God.

Like I said, reasons will vary greatly depending on each individual family.


HOW do you homeschool?

There are many ways to homeschool.

We are more of an Eclectic homeschooling family, not using strictly one set of curriculum and adding other resources plus field trips etc.

There are Unschoolers, Traditional homeschoolers, classical homeschoolers, Charlotte Mason style etc.

You can read more about the different types here

FINAL THOUGHTS:

No matter what style you choose, where you choose to homeschool or whether you take field trips or not, I believe the most important things to do is pray, discern and KNOW YOUR WHY. When the homeschooling gets tough, trust me it will, you will need to put that why in front of you and ask God for His grace to carry on. Take heart you ARE qualified, you WILL do fine but it WILL be hard sometimes and that's ok. Just breath, put the books down if necessary and just be with your children. We all need a break sometimes :)

Have a great homeschool year!





















 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

It's that time of the year again...

For many of us with children the month of August marks back to school time.



As a homeschooler, I am not different.

My books were ordered ahead of time due to a move, my homeschool area will be finished soon and I am almost 40% organized, lol I know, I know.

The thing that always gets me every. single. year. is the homeschool planner. I cant never seem to find what I am looking for. I want something to keep me organized, something to help me in homemaking, but not something huge!

This year I took a plunge and decided to make my own, very nervous about it and hoping that it will be what I need. I am sure eventually I will add/delete some but for now this will work for me.

I know many of you might be on the same boat and wanted to offer you the chance to down load this planner FREE HERE  if you would like.

Tell me what you think, what areas would you like to see in the future? Is there anything missing? Is it too much? Your input is appreciated. Happy homeschooling!





Prayer for Homeschoolers

Dear Lord, bless me in my decision to home school my children. Grant me the grace of peace and determination in this awesome endeavor. Lead me to the proper materials for the instruction each of my children, so that their individual talents and skills will be nurtured and they will grow in intelligence to the fullness of their abilities.

Give me the strength to persevere when the weight of being teacher, mother, wife, and housekeeper seems too much to bear. Help me to maintain my household and family school, knowing that there will be times when one or both may seem to suffer, but confident that you will assist me in restoring harmony to both in good time. Allow me the contentment of heart and knowledge that the proper formation of my children's minds holds importance far above many of the callings of this world. Bestow on me courage to overcome the criticisms of those who disagree with me in this effort, keeping ever mindful that the growing of my children in knowledge and grace will be for your glory, and the trials I must endure are for my personal sanctification. Amen