(Note: In case you're coming in on this post with no clue what I'm talking about... Ambleside is a free online curriculum utilizing Charlotte Mason's ideas for teaching children. It is created by homeschooling families for homeschooling families. The only part that isn't free, unless you get all your books from someone for free or at the library, are the literature books and regular school supplies. The curriculum and schedules they put together are *free*. This isn't an online school that is taught via video or whatever. It's a homeschool resource for parents.)
When I first looked at Ambleside I was really confused. Beyond confused! (They're redoing the site so it'll be cool to see how it turns out!) But the more I read, the more I started to piece it all together in my mind. Making schedules is one of the hardest things for me. I feel like I need structure and a timetable but at the same time it makes me feel really restricted if I have to do things at specific times.
So with that in mind I did not write down what TIME we'd be doing anything in the schedule. By leaving the time off the schedule I am open to move things around and start our school day when it is best for us to start and mold it around whatever may come up and interrupt. With a lot of smaller children who are not yet doing schoolwork and with running my business I have to keep a schedule that is more flexible.
I have 36-weeks already mapped out with weekly work and it was just a matter of figuring out how to disperse the load for the week. Best way to do that is to write down the daily work that you do, well, everyday. Then divide the weekly stuff between MWF and TTh.
We are doing Year 1 and Year 3. And of course 0 but my 4-year-old is pretty savvy and a quick learner. I have a feeling she'll be in Year 1 soon. She'll definitely be listening in on the work we're doing and taking part of a lot of it.
History (M: US, W: Geography, F: World)
Natural History Literature
Music (T: Composers, Th: Folk/Hymns)
The rest of the day is freed up to explore, create, play, do chores, make meals, independently read, etc. Hopefully it goes well enough that we're actually done well before lunch but we will see. I left the creative parts for last so if they extended well into the time that I need to devote to work the girls are free to continue on their own.
My mom-in-law will be doing school on Wednesdays again which is another reason I had a hard time coming up with my schedule but I decided to pencil Wednesday in as though the kids were at home with me (especially as sometimes there are sick days/snow days where they'll be stuck with me anyway, ha!). The parts they can't miss or she won't have them do at her house (chapter reading) will just be something they do before they leave for Nonna's house or makeup later... She does a lot of handiwork with them (crochet, knitting, baking, sewing, etc.) so that's a huge part that she is doing that I'm not good at. She won't do what I am doing because it is fun for the kids to learn in different ways AND she still covers the subjects that are important (she DID homeschool her four kids so I trust her!). She enjoys coming up with stuff for them to do and they love going over there. I pray they never tire of going to Nonna's house to learn and bake and sew.
Any other homeschool families out there? What are you considering or decided on? What years are your kids doing school? Have you done Ambleside's curriculum or are you considering it? Would love to hear what everyone is doing. Feel free to post links to your own posts about getting organized and prepared for school!