Oh boy do I love to talk about goals and planning! It is one of my most favoritest things to do in the whole world. I absolutely love to plan. This points to several things:
a) I am a nerd through and through
b) I haven't yet figured out that all my best-laid plans hardly ever work, making me both a slow learner and a nerd, combined
c) I am a control freak, in recovery but prone to the occasional lapse
d) all of the above
Don't tell me which answer you chose!
But I do love to plan. Not much else in life pleases me more than to have all my homeschool books and notebooks and catalogs scattered around me, deep in the process of figuring out schedules and courses of study for each child. I am content and in my element in those moments. As Martha says, "It's a good thing."
And so, what are our plans for next year? Well, for several months that has been the million dollar question. I have written here before about my desire to have all my kids be homeschool because of some sort of all or nothing mentality that I fell into along the way. I struggled with not being "real" homeschoolers if some of my children were in school. Ultimately, I had to let that go and realize that if you homeschool any of your children, you qualify as a homeschooler.
Which brings me to next year. I have decided that the older three will be in school and the younger three will be home. That means that I will have a sophomore at our local public school (as long as we stay in this district when we move-- if we ever sell this house, which is a rant for another day), a freshman in the charter high school, a 6th grader at the charter school they have been at this year, a third grader at home, a first grader at home, and a three year old at home. Sounds busy! But good. I am, quite honestly, looking forward to it.
I am busily making plans and poring through catalogs choosing things that look interesting, perusing websites and talking to other moms. One very gracious mom came over last week with her girls and they proudly showed us their lapbooks. It was so fun to see what they had done and I have about decided to tackle lapbooking next year. I have decided to choose nine subjects, one per month, to focus on. I will let each child pick at least one of the subjects and the rest will be things we need to concentrate on for their grade level-- possibly using a planned curriculum like Konos or Apologia Elementary Science to give us a framework. Haven't figured all that out yet. In the coming weeks, I plan to start playing around with it and make our first lapbook on hot air ballooning, just to get one under our belt. I will also order several lapbooking instruction books through Tobin's Lab and do some digging into websites. I might also order some of the premade kits from Hands Of A Child or Knowledge Box Central just to get our feet wet.
Most of our curriculum will be chosen and purchased at our state convention. I am so stinkin excited about this weekend!! I am not speaking there this year, so my husband and I can go and just soak it all in. Mark Hamby, Paul Tripp and Jeff Myers are going to be there and they happen to be awesome, awesome speakers. It promises to be a great weekend and a much-needed time for Curt and I to talk in-depth about the direction of our family and reconnect about-- our goals! I highly recommend going if you can swing it with your spouse. The time we have spent at NCHE is more valuable than any marriage conference we could have gone to.
And so, I am sure that at some point I will post more in depth about what I will be doing with each child. For right now I am just in the investigating and information-gathering stage. I love this stage, so I tend to stay in it for quite awhile. Because I genuinely do, as I think I have mentioned, love to plan.