I’m not the hardest working guy in the world, but I know what it is to work hard. Really hard. Setting up our home school was not hard, per se, but the research for curricula, equipment and the like was time-consuming and somewhat tedious.
Preparing to home school my daughters was a lot more in-depth and detailed than I first thought it would be. I don’t want to screw this up. Their education is incredibly important to me. I did this before and had success, but it is obvious the necessary commitment to doing that wasn’t there when we last tried it, SO…
First thing was first. I needed a very inexpensive (preferably free) curriculum that was all-inclusive, provided for electives, and could mostly be done on-line without the need for many additional materials. I also wanted a curriculum that centered around teaching the kids how to teach themselves. This way, they won’t have a particular learning modality forced on them (whether it’s their preferred modality or not) as they try to learn progressively more difficult concepts. I wanted something that was easy to follow, organized, and didn’t require more than 4 hours a day to complete.
I heard about the Robinson Home school Curriculum about 5 years ago, right before we heard about the home school option offered by former Presidential candidate Congressman Ron Paul. We examined both programs and found them to be extremely similar. The reviews of the Robinson curriculum in particular were just phenomenal, but it seemed it would be more difficult to follow than it seemed. I believe I’ve found the perfect option for us.
Appropriately titled the “Easy Peasy All-In-One Home school,” has taken the same general approach to schooling as the Robinson curriculum so successfully championed, and literally wrote instructions for each day of school from kindergarten through the 8th grade. In the instructions, she provided all the links to the reading, math, study questions, answer sheets. While the answer sheets aren’t fill-able online, we plan to simply write our answers on lined paper and correlate them to the numbered questions. They even have tests available to help you determine where your child should begin.
They offer a high school curriculum as well, though parents and young adults choose their coursework as opposed to completing grouped work within “levels.” like in the K-8 program. You can find the high school curriculum at https://allinonehighschool.com/
One thing to note, for those to whom it might matter, the Easy Peasy Home school program does present a Christian viewpoint, and offers bible lessons as part of the curriculum. The kids need not complete the Bible lessons if you or they do not want to.
Curriculum specialist Cathy Duffy rates this curriculum as one of her “top picks” for available homeschooling programs. You can see what she had to say about the program here.
I researched and settled on the best gear for the buck, picked up the laptops, and am now knee-deep in creating a daily schedule for us, complete with my daughters’ input and buy-in.
We started Monday, March 6th… just 4 days before I launched this podcast/blog/website. As time passes, I’ll post a more thorough review of the program we’re using.
So… with just 2-4 hours of work to complete their schooling, I have a lot of free time to fill if I expect to keep them engaged, learning, active and NOT bored. We’ll post updates about how that evolves as well. There are simply too many ways to make everyday life educational for the kids. Learning how to prepare meals, wash laundry and keep the home clean will do at LEAST as much to serve them in their lives as learning quadratic equations, or how to use Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle in calculation of likelihood. I plan to use every thing everyday life hands us to use as a teaching tool for the kids.
I’m giving this my all, just like I give them my all. If you also home school your children, please share interesting ways you provide educational enrichment for your kids.
***UPDATE – Today is Monday, March 20th. The girls have settled in to their home school routine. They often opt to skip their morning “clear the cobwebs” hour and get straight to work. Your kids’ attitude is everything here, which means yours is as well. With a good attitude, they work quickly, diligently, and its over before we know it. We’ve enjoyed taking the dog for walks, shopping for crafts, and cooking new recipes. I try to make each outing educational. For instance, we’ll compare prices of the same item in different quantities for cost savings. Outings have also given me a few scenario-based problems to present to the girls for derivative logic and cognition exercises. It has taken some creativity, and maintaining awareness for opportunity.
The home school program is excellent, from what I have seen thus far. The girls are only one year apart in school, but my eldest daughter requires more time to complete her work. She is not particularly happy about this, but it’s not too big a deal. We are supplementing the mathematics and sciences with www.khanacademy.com (there’s a ton of free study material there; and for the mathematics at least, there’s a placement test of sorts; they track the student’s progress through the completion of quizzes that are often a game of sorts). I would highly encourage you to check out these resources.
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