Friday, August 28, 2009

Recording Keeping & Lesson Planning

This is our 5th year of home schooling. You'd think we'd have it all figured out by now. Actually, the one thing I've learned for sure about home schooling is that every year is different. Why? First, because our kids are all different and what works for one kid at a certain grade level might not work for the next kid. Secondly, I'm still trying new things and seeing what fits our family. It's fun looking back over my old blog posts seeing all the different ways we've kept track our home schooling progress over the past four years. Since we're trying something new this year I thought I'd create a post about it. I know I personally love getting a peek at other mom's lesson plans and record keeping, so here's a glimpse into mine.
If you click on each image you'll see a larger, readable version of our lesson plans. There's one for Danya and Gloria since they share a lot of subjects, one for Brianna, since she's mostly on her own this year, and one for Shane and Kevin. I'm attempting to teach them together even though Shane is older by two years. Kevin is advanced for a three year old. He already knows all but two of his colors (he mixes up pink and purple) and can count to 10 and do simple addition. Shane is working on counting past five and knows some colors. They both know some of their letters and can recognize their names.
The basic concept with these lesson plans that I created is simple. I wanted to have a quick overview I can glance at to see what to work on next in each subject, and I wanted to be able to record when we got it done. So I gathered up all the books and things that I wanted them to work on and put them into these spreadsheets so that I can see the next 20 days worth they'll be doing. Obviously this is not a comprehensive list of everything they will do. I didn't include games, flash cards, videos, or any of the extra things we'll do. I also didn't include a place for independent unassigned reading. This is just the basics. Also, we won't work on every subject every day, so it's not literally the next 20 school days worth of work. I guess if I wanted to I could have made two pages worth of assignments for each kid. I was trying to keep it simple. Now, as we complete each section, I just note the date (or the older kids do) in the box next to the assignment.

We've been using this for about two weeks now. I printed them out and keep them in a small binder. I've got dividers with tabs for each month in it and I hope to add more pages as we complete these. Originally I didn't have a sheet for Shane and Kevin. I didn't think they needed one. Then I realized that they really do have quite a bit of work they do. I also wanted to set aside specific books to read to them and keep track of what we've read. I'm going to do this with library books, too, so that I'll have a record of just how often I'm reading to them. I figure Katie doesn't need a record sheet yet, lol.


April said...

I did spreadsheets similar to this for the first time this year. I had wanted to share them on my blog but have no idea how to do it. I created them using Excel. So far it has been great for keeping us on track. I think I will use a spreadsheet every year.

Jess said...

You copy the info on the spreadsheet that you want to post and then open Microsoft Paint and paste it in there. Then save it as a .jpg file. Then you can upload it to blogger just like a photo. At least, that's how I do it.

April said...

Jess, thank you so much for telling me a way to do this. Finally I will be able to share documents!!

You know I can not believe how similar our sheets are!