If you’re a homeschooler, then summer means….shopping, planning, organizing. Ok, it also means, vacation, sleeping (one can dream!), finding your living room floor, catching up on what you didn’t get finished through the year, gardening and much more.
Yes, summer can be a lot of rest and relaxation if you’re lucky. But, if you’re a homeschool mom, there’s a little work to be done also. There’s shopping for new curriculum, finishing up entering all of those grades, planning the next school year and more. The more you can get done during the summer, the less work you will have the rest of the year. Does that mean you need to spend every moment of your time off planning and working? Of course not. But you don’t want to wait until the last minute either and be in a mad dash to get everything done before the first day of school.
To make it easier for you try to set aside some time to work on getting familiar with any new curriculum, planning out your schedules for the year. Like what subject you’ll do at which time. When will chores happen? Take time to go ahead and plan your school calendar. Think about what you have to plan around like church activities, sports events, field trips, holidays, vacations, etc. Plan in some extra days for sickness! You may want to even work in a few teacher work days.
But don’t forget to close out the previous school year before you work on the next, if possible. You don’t have to plan each day’s lessons at this point, just write down what you’d like to accomplish each week. Not specific lessons, just what subjects or classes you want to do each day. As time gets closer, you can start working out your lesson plans and then throughout the year you can get more specific with them. I like to make a chart called “Course Projections”. This chart breaks the school year down into the 4 quarters and shows where I should be for each subject. For example: on day 45 of Saxon Math I should be on lesson 45, Tapestry of Grace I should be at week 8, etc. It just gives me a reference at a glance to make sure we’re moving along. Do I always get to stick to it? No, but it helps to keep me focused.
Sometimes summer means catching up. Life does happen, it doesn’t stop just because you homeschool. There will be sickness, surgery, deaths in the family, your child just doesn’t get math, you have to move, etc. Things do come up and at times, these things can throw you off course. Depending on the length and the ages of your kids, it can be relatively easy to get back on course. Sometimes you need more time. That’s where summer comes in. You can use summer to help you get back on track.
Yes, summer can be full of lazy days, but there’s also a little work involved. I think that’s one surprising thing about homeschooling that a lot of moms don’t anticipate. It doesn’t have to eat up your whole summer, just schedule some time in little bits and pieces to work on it.