So, in a few short weeks we will be embarking on our second year of home education, and with it a Year 1 Child and a Reception age child.
I’m more relaxed, in some ways about the start of the new academic year. We haven’t really taken a break and if anything in the last couple of weeks we have really settled back into a work pattern.
My plans are relatively loose for the forthcoming year. I want to cut back on the amount of time we have out of the house – we used the reception year as a means of throwing ourselves at lots of opportunities to see what worked well for the children. I learnt that History seems to be an area of interest for Daniel. I want to incorporate more outside time for us all. We definitely function better after a blast of fresh air and I need to think about how we position that in our day.
For Emma, she will start her reception year four months younger than Daniel did, and I think her reading journey will be a little different to his. She is able to do some basic blending of sounds (Daniel wasn’t at this stage) and I think she’ll learn to read following phonics more closely than he did. I have the same set of books that we used with Daniel and I’ll start looking at those with her more formally over the coming weeks. My aim for her reception year is to simply gett her reading and to complete the first book of our maths curriculum.
For Daniel, I have much bigger plans. I want to get him learning to study more independently and to work on his comprehension skills. He is able to read well but we are not always convinced that his comprehension is at the same level. I also plan to introduce grammar rules to him. Again, I’m not massively sure how I will approach that at the moment. We do have the Language Arts stuff from The Good and The Beautiful that I might use as a guide for Daniel and we have various workbooks that are always handy to have around. We have also started the second of the Maths no problem books and I hope to have this book (1b) and the next (2A) more or less completed by the end of the academic year. Maths is an area that Daniel can be resistant to, so I might need to rethink the path we are following for that.
We are also continuing on with Sassafras and are just over halfway through the Zoology book. I think we will have that finished by the end of the calendar year and will start the second one after the Christmas and New Year break. I like this set of books as there’s scope to introduced extra things as and when they take the children’s interests, and cut back on those bits they find less interesting.
More generally I plan to continue with the weekly football group as this is a class both the older two enjoy, and one where Harry is able to run around too without having to wait around for his siblings. I also like that the park allows an opportunity for the children to play with others. We will still head to our PE group, but I might not do this one every week; I’ll see how things pan out.
We also plan to continue our Spanish lessons, I’m just waiting to see what happens with those. I am also planning to sign up to a site I have found that offers downloads etc to supplement the stuff we are doing and of course, continue on with the One Third Stories boxes that the children have been enjoying recently. I have noticed Daniel starting to use more Spanish at home now so I really want to try and do at least one extra hour at home with them all.
We have their swimming lessons and gymnastics classes too, and all the other meet ups that get arranged. We are also attending a Geography fair in September and the older two are well on the way with their projects for that.
I want to make project work a bigger part of our learning this next academic year, they’ve enjoyed the focus on their projects this last week or so so I plan to use the Curiositree Book (Human World) that we have recently been sent as a springboard. This is such a wonderful book (I have added the natural world version on to the birthday wishlist). I also want to look at inspirational people too and have a few books lined up to use as inspiration for the children to choose someone to learn more about.
I also want to have a bit of a focus on creative outlets – sewing, crafting, baking etc. There is a real benefit to having a creative outlet and I want to have at least an hour a week where we all make or do something. I enjoy cross stitching (if I ever get the chance!) and want to actively sit and let the children see me working on something creative in a bid to encourage them to work creatively too.
My plans feel structured enough for us for now to satisfy my own need for order as well as the children’s needs to have something that they are actively working on. As ever, things are loose enough to change as and when we need to due to other opportunities arising or if we simply need a break and a bit of a rest.
I’m looking forward to our regular groups starting back up and to getting back into the swing of things.