As of July 2020… Laughter…
So… Imma just lay out what’s plotted for next year. I’ll note this year’s achievements where we have them. How’s that?
You can go back through every iteration of what we thought we would do (I believe you can see the submenus and go back to about 2014) you can see that my family are not big on formal stuff and therefore a lot of it just didn’t ever get done. They would ask to learn something. I would lay out some ideas. Sometimes I would actually engage them in those ideas. They would lose interest and we would go on with life and things that grabbed our attention more. My state requires that my children be educated in language arts; mathematics; biological and physical sciences; social sciences; fine arts; and physical development and health. They have. If someone came to my door, I could prove that my kids have been educated (and educated well) in all of these areas. They just haven’t been educated PER A PLAN or USING A CURRICULUM. Regardless of what I had laid out in submenu after failed submenu.
In an effort to better hold myself accountable and meet my kids emerging needs, I started teaching other people’s children. I offered classes that my own kids wanted. This year, I fell prey to someone that didn’t enjoy my competition and fooled me into believe we could work together. So my kids attended her program one day/week and I dropped down to teaching just science. That ended in February and I’m back on track with what I was doing–teaching all of the things my kids need.
So this is what is planned for the summer and fall…
May 2019 – Girly – rising 5th grader
Social Studies: Notsomuch. In the fall, she will participate in my integrated Social Science and Language Arts class that has some writing to it using a Great Books text about friendships (sociology/psychology). And it will be enough. She loves the book already. Update: this went well.
Language Arts: See Social Science. But for the summer we may work on some cool grammar books. I have recently introduced her to a reading log as this is one of my biggest regrets with BigGuy. Update: books untouched.
Math: We have gone back to Math Mammoth at her request and although she tested out, I’m starting her at grade 1 and just plowing through it until we slow down. Whenever that is at whatever level that is. Update: Nope. We started Math-U-See in February and it was going much better.
Science: I allowed her to opt out of the classes I taught this year. She would attend when she was interested in the topic. That’s over. I think the format next year will be more encouraging for her. So she’ll do the Middle School Integrated Science class I’ll be teaching next year. Hopefully. Update: this went well, too, although she was sensitive about her not picking things up quickly even though she had great ideas.
Fine Arts: I’m not feeling like I’m positive about this for next year for her. Let’s just say “we’ll see”. Update: she did a lot of stuff on her own. It was fine.
Physical Education: I’d like to say that both kids will be going back to swimming and martial arts for the fall but there’s that whole money thing, so… Update: Nope. We tackled the legal requirement through health education via her love for cooking and learning stuff there.
Foreign Language: Italian is the language du jour (see what I did there?). It’s a useless language unless you are my family–who has family in Italy and opportunity to visit there. Plus it’s close enough to Spanish to make the transition easy at some point in the future. Update: ever the contrarian, she chose Spanish and started Rosetta Stone.
May 2019 – BigGuy – rising 10th grader
Math: He is currently trying to complete Algebra 2 through Time4Learning so that he can take Precalculus next year. I have to be honest: I’m inclined to have him take Algebra 2 again through Mr. D Math live coursework so that he fully understands it in a different way. I hear amazing things. Update: Nope. After a lot of time off from math, we went backwards to Algebra 2 with IL Virtual School. He is finish that in July 2020.
Science: He is currently planning to finish Chemistry through Time4Learning over the summer. I am teaching Conceptual Physics next year through my coschool (once/week for 2 hours plus another hour via remote session) and he will be doing that for science plus Science Olympiad. I don’t know. I feel like he’s done with Science Olympiad, but maybe leveling up with re-invigorate him. Update: also nope. He did a Conceptual Physics class that I offered to the community. They were a good bunch.
Language Arts: He is enrolled in AP Literature with APHomeschoolers/PAHomeschoolers. We’ll see how it goes. Update: done. Great experience with Lili Serbicki as instructor. Highly recommend.
Social Science: He is enrolled in AP Human Geography with APHomeschoolers/PAHomeschoolers. He’s also likely to attend/participate in the Great Books course I’m teaching about the three branches of government and just not doing the writing component (which is a huge chunk of it). Update: done. NOT a good experience with Carol Gillespie who was not even remotely engaged but effectively gave them a self-study plan.
Fine Arts: Oh big changes here. He has found a community youth theater group that he did a fall and is in the midst of a spring play with. He was gifted 2 hours with a vocal coach to try to get his voice back on track after a bit over a year off (coinciding with a voice drop). The coach is impressed with his range and his ability to “sing in his head” (something to do with where the air moves). He’s auditioning for the chorus of two shows this summer and will pick one. He also has an acting camp registered and if the local high school will allow him to miss Wednesdays, he’ll take choir and art there next year (they’re available during the first two periods of the day). We will look for more acting and singing opportunities for him next year in addition to helping with props and costumes (which he is very interested in). Update: his group took a change of direction that didn’t work for us. We didn’t find another group–which was sad. He took a lot of classes to bolster his skill set.
Physical Education: Like Girly, hopefully martial arts and swimming. Update: this did not go well. We tackled the legal requirement by doing a lot of talking about/learning about what exercise affects what parts of the body inside and outside; and why they’re important.
Foreign Language: He managed to pass a very rigorous level 1 Latin this last year and wants to continue this for all 4 years of high school. I’m okay with that because it gives me a transcriptable foreign language and then I don’t have to really worry about his Italian. But he plans to take Italian all four years, too. Update: Level 2 was rough and he wants to ditch level 3. We’ll see what happens.
Now… let’s see how reality plays out…