So, here I am… offering to help you by sharing my homeschool planning process in hopes that you won’t feel as alone as I did. Let’s consider this plan as the blueprints for your successful school year.
When I was in middle school, I wanted to be an architect. I would beg for copies of Home Magazine, which contained page after page of blueprints, and would pour over each page with great passion, dreaming and planning for building a fabulous home. While I do not remember teaching myself to read the blueprints, I understood every detail and they are VERY detailed, but it makes perfect sense.
If you want to have a ceiling fan in the middle of the room, you have to know where the electrical lines will go to get power to that spot. When you flush your toilet, you want to make sure it is connected to a pipe that will whisk the yuck far away. That is what your blueprints are for… planning ahead so that everything comes together, leaving a future without worries over if the ceiling fan will work or where the yuck goes when you flush.
Planning your homeschool year is like drawing a blueprint. You are putting the details in place so that the rest of your year will flow smoothly. While I am sure planning on a day-to-day basis works for some people just fine, I believe that putting my plan together at the beginning of the year is essential to a less-stress year. I know when I will start and when I will end and where I will take breaks in between.
Notice two key words I have used above:
Smoothly ~ I did not say, “perfectly.” There will be bumps along the way and you might need to rewrite a plan here and there. Remember the scene in Sleepless in Seattle where the lady says she was tossing and turning all night because she needed the larger refrigerator? What do the architects say? “No problem. We’ll just have to reline all the cabinets.” That happens to me sometimes with my lesson plans. An unexpected sick day or appointment will cause a ripple effect through a week’s worth of plans and I have to rewrite a week or two to offset the difference. But, I have the end of my plan in place so that I know where I need to shift and squeeze to fit it all in and still end on time.
Less-stress ~ I did not say, “Stressless.” However, the thing I noticed about homeschooling is that stress is self-generated. When I stopped focusing on teaching my child to want to learn and started hounding about meeting deadlines, the stress level would rise. If I took an unexpected day or two off from schooling to sit on my backside and blog, I would panic and try to recoup the lost time. More stress. Who was to blame? Me.
I hope you will follow along this week. If you have a blog and feel so inclined, share my button with your readers. On Friday (please let me remember), I want to do a link-up with other blogs on how they plan because I know that not everyone is wired just like me and I want everyone to find a process that works for them.
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