Here we are; the end of yet another quarter and the beginning of our final stretch. Now that three-fourths of our official learning year is under our belts, it’s time to take stock of our routine and start planning next year’s learning.
I think all of us can see the curriculum we’ve chosen is working well. The children are progressing nicely in their lessons and learning much. No; I don’t think we’ll change the company we’re currently working with. All the same, there are one or two changes which will be instituted next year.
Science and history seem to be the two areas which need adjusting first and foremost. In previous years, we’d done unit studies to cover both these subjects, but this year was the first we’d made a change. (You can read about our switch HERE.) I made a solid attempt to stager our book learning with active lessons, but half of these activities never panned out. I admit I am completely to blame; when it came to implementing most of the activities, I realized I just didn’t have the energy or the desire to do them. Realistically, I’d penciled in ideas which were either far too grand for a morning lesson or I had failed to gather necessary materials.
As I begin to start evaluating next year’s lessons, I am going to make a point of being more down-to-earth. Are these ideas which we are going to be interested in? Will I be able to put these together with sufficient time? Will I remember to purchase all the materials needed? While I am typing up our routine and tentative schedule, I want to make sure I am taking all of this into account.
Usually, we spend our afternoons handling elective “rotations”; one child covers Spanish, another typing, a third reads, while yet another is practicing piano. They spend a portion of time at their ‘station’ and then rotate when mommy calls out. Unfortunately, our keyboard called it quits this quarter. While I am sorry to see it go, my man has decided it might be time to invest in an actual piano. (Hooray!) This is going to be a welcome change for next year’s routine! We are also going to introduce our son to the awesome world of Spanish lessons. He usually spends two rotation times reading, but next year that is going to change. Before we know it, we’ll be a bi-lingual family. ¡Excelente!
Besides re-evaluating a few subjects, we are also going to be reducing our outside responsibilities. This year, we noted how little we missed participating in our PSP’s Spring Co-op session, so we will not be resuming those in the fall session. I’ve also begun to notice how tired I have become; not physically, as much as mentally. There are several activities which we are going to be dropping permanently once May is complete. It’s amazing how just letting go of a few things eases the mind and creates more time. Plus, I’ve been able to clear out much-needed space which was dedicated to these activities, which will be put to good use.
On a smaller scale, we’ve decided to start a few new things as well. We are going to be investing in a few items for our kitchen; namely, candy making items and baking tools. We’ll be making a point of spending more time together in the kitchen, having fun and being creative. Sewing will also be a big part of our coming year. There will be lots of sewing practice, with projects beginning in the fall. Perhaps we’ll get to that quilt the girls keep mentioning. It can’t be too hard, right?
The third quarter might be finished, but we’ve still got another nine weeks to go. I pray we finish well; enjoying each day and creating new memories. This year will be done before I know it and we’ll be diving head first into summer.
What changes do you plan to implement next year?