Planning your first homeschool year does not have to be scary or overwhelming. Here I am going to breakdown some of the tips that have helped me succeed when planning my homeschool year. By the way I am planning for a 4th grader and a set of twins who are 3.5 years old.
Planning its very important when you first start because it will make you or break your homeschool since it will organized your subjects and define your goals as a homeschool parent.
“If You Fail To Plan, You Are Planning To Fail.” – Benjamin Franklin
The main time to start planning your homeschool it’s the beginning of the summer. You may ask yourself why?
Because summer is a great time to cool down and take a deep breath from homeschooling. At the same time, it allows us to have a fresh and renewing perspective as to want we want to teach. Summers also is the much-acknowledged period before the start of a new school year.
Picking a good curriculum for your homeschool is the fun part of getting ready for a new year’s planning. Ah, the smell of new books, a different range of colors, sharpened pencils, and what not! Picking a new curriculum excites me and my kids immensely. Especially because this is when I access what they would like to learn about and the books I need to make it happen.
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Planning ahead of time can be a little bit overwhelming. But planning for a new homeschool year will benefit you to avoid overwhelm and help you feel more comfortable and organized. So, in this post, we’ll discuss the different strategies on How To Plan A Homeschool Year.
TIPS FOR PLANNING YOUR HOMESCHOOL YEAR
I’m sharing my homeschool planning strategies, and I hope this will help you with your homeschool planning as well.
1. Start with Prayer
Many things are included in planning for a homeschool year, like choosing a curriculum, scheduling and organizing the items, choosing unit studies, and much more. But the most important thing is spending time in faithful prayer for your homeschool.
Here are things to pray God when you have a question about How Do I Plan A Homeschool Year
- Grow wisdom and knowledge in your kids
- Goals for your homeschool year
- Guidance in choosing the right curriculum
- Pray for your kids and that they will develop godly characters.
- You will maintain bonding and a healthy relationship with your kids while teaching them.
- God will give your strength to win your kids’ heart over.
- Word of god must answer to any difficulty you may face while homeschooling.
- Set Goals For Homeschool Year
2. Set Goals and Vision
The key to success is setting VISIONS and GOALS. Ask the question yourself – Do you clearly define goals for your homeschool? How do you create homeschooling goals for growth? Do you know the reasons you’re doing this? Where do you want to see your homeschooler kids in ten years? What do you want when kids leave your home for graduation?
Now you have an idea about what worked the best and what didn’t in the past year. Your analyzes make you set goals and tasks for you and your children. Smart criteria is a great resource that helps you with the academic section.
Before setting a goal for your homeschool year, you need to know the strengths of your kids! You must analyze the past year, what progress they made! In which areas they want to improve, and how do you help them?
Below are a few essential tips you must consider in your homeschooling planning:-
- Know the strengths of your children
- What are areas children need significant improvement
- You have to set a specific and measurable goal for your children
- Remember your goals focus on behavior and not on outcomes
- Set Goals for learning, not for formalities or completion
- Make Sure that Your Methods Are According To Your Goals
3. Different Homeschool Methods
Although every homeschooler follows a personalized method to teach the children, confidence, some homeschooling learning styles can help us make a better curriculum choice for our kids. Below is the list of ways that allow you to discover yours!
- Classical Homeschooling
- Charlotte Mason
- Unit Study homeschooling
- Unschooling Homeschool Method
- Waldorf Homeschooling
- Multiple Intelligences Homeschooling
- Montessori Homeschooling
- Deschooling to Start Homeschool
- Eclectic/Relaxed Homeschooling
The method is not a law, it’s a supportive system; it’s like a backbone for your homeschool that moves quickly. You have to set academic and character goals for your homeschooler. I have listed all possible methods above; you must choose what’s right for you. You can choose the method that proves the backbone for your homeschool also.
4. Evaluate Last Year for Improvement
Before planning your homeschool year, you need to look back at last year! Start asking yourself how the previous year was? Write down all your queries on a paper; your homework helps you analyze how to improve the coming year. Below are a few questions that you have to ask yourself:-
- Did the previous plan work well?
- Did your kid reach the desired learning target?
- How can you improve kids’ engagement to achieve their goals?
- What is my kid’s depth of knowledge on subjects?
- Does my teaching style match with kids’ learning style?
- Is there any unnecessary activity, method, and curriculum needs to be removed?
- Why did I fail to achieve goals?
- How do I meet these goals for the coming year?
Try to find answers to all these questions, and also see where you can improve and what methods need to be change in order for your homeschool to be more successful this year..
5. Evaluate Your Kids
It doesn’t mean you should stress yourself or your kids, but it’s necessary to see how much progress your kids have made during the year. Evaluation with the right tool really can be a pleasant experience because children enjoy talking about what they learned throughout the year.
This is also a good time to ask them what kid of subjects they would like to learn for the following year.
Choose an evaluator that fits best with your education style; try to connect online with other homeschoolers to get their recommendation for the best evaluator.
If you don’t have one you can use the yearly exam that is required by your state as a point to evaluate your child’s learning.
6. Where To Buy Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum
Here I share what curriculum I used for my kindergarten homeschool. Firstly, I recommend you purchase Duffy’s Homeschool Picks; it narrows down the homeschooling methods that suit you and your family.
All the publishers have their websites with all information and links about the curriculum. My favorite one is Rainbow Resource; they carry near about 40,000 homeschool educational resources. You can purchase your curriculum online as they provide catalogs also.
Kindergarten its so fun and the kids learn by playing so any concept needs to be introduce as a game.
7. Create a Homeschool Schedule that works for you!
Below are a few things you have to keep in mind while creating a homeschool schedule:-
- Don’t ever schedule minute by minute and hour by hour; try to make your homeschool schedule with decent breaks.
- Make a realistic plan after considering the season you are in. Consider all the essential family functions, holidays, and activities in your schedule and how often you want to take time off.
- You can make changes in your schedule as needed
- Decide a Planner you’re comfortable with.
As a homeschool mom its very important to plan our your year and decide the dates that you want off and how often you want to take them. for example I follow a year around schedule, that means I school for 6 weeks and take one week off. See the video below so you can learn how to do a year around schedule.
As a homeschool mom and everything else we do, you want to plan for the next year! How do you decide on a planner? It must be Plain, simple, and effortless that could work according to your needs. See these planners 6 Best Free Homeschool Planners for Busy Moms
The first step is to put together what you want to teach throughout the year, like what subjects you included (math, science, history, etc.)
Since this is your first year teaching choose simple goals. Teach the basics and add more as you go considered to pick simple subjects like language Arts, Math and Science, depending on the age of your child, consider motor skill, and color recognition. Try to build a learning without any pressure.
8. Daily Lesson Plans Are Great!
Planbook.com and Homeschool Tracker help you to write down as much detail as you want to add in. It makes you not forget even a small thing. But if you want to create your own, that’s great; go ahead. It’s worthwhile if you are going to spend a decent time planning! But if you want to SAVE TIME & SANITY, use Lesson plans with the homeschool tracker.
9. Map Out First Few Weeks of Planning
If you can devote a day or two or a weekend to pre-planning, you’ll not regret it. Because there are lots of things and details to point out. This pre-planning will help you to move quickly into the following year.
I U se an open and go curriculum for LA and Math that helps me because I don’t worry about what is being taught with those. But for science and social study I create or buy unit studies so so preparation is require.
If you want to stay sane, and aide, then establish a weekly routine to stay organized and productive.
10. Ideas on How To Set Up The Homeschool Classroom
It depends upon how many children are there for homeschooling, homeschooling style, and how many rooms are there in your home. Some homeschoolers keep only one or two rooms; others prefer homeschool-free zones.
I use a formal dinning room because we never use it and its easy because i can leave everything there on the table or the book shelf.
11. Make a List of Necessary Supplies
You know the best deal to purchase school supplies are during the back-to-school days sales. So, make a list of homeschool supplies you need and take benefits of these sales!
FAQ – How To Plan A Homeschooling Year?
Below are a few tips for planning your homeschool year:
- Take sufficient time to think and pray.
- Set goals for the upcoming year.
- Purchase curriculum of your choice.
- Look out for a preferred homeschool planner.
- Make a manageable schedule for your homeschool year.
- Dedicate a favorable time to plan the things.
- Map out the first few weeks of the year.
- The last thing is to start to organize a suitable place for homeschool and supplies
How many days a year do you homeschool?
One of the good things about homeschooling is that you can do what works better for you and your family! Most states require at least 180 days in a year. You have to look at the requirements for your state before starting planning.
Summary on-The Ultimate Guide To Planning Your Homeschool Year:-
- Please don’t wait until the last date; pick up a curriculum and familiarize yourself with it.
- When you get time, dig out all the subjects of the curriculum you have chosen.
- Choose a date for any portfolios or reports to be submitted to the state.
- Mark all the holidays on the calendar.
- Add field trips or extracurricular activities that happen in a particular week.
- After finishing all the significant portion of the planning, add a few fun days to your schedule.