It seems to me that home-schoolers generally tend to be “outside-the-box type thinkers” since we aren’t following the societal norm of sending our children to public schools.
As self-proclaimed non-conformists, we tend to be less than enthusiastic about using an entire curriculum in a box exactly as it is intended to be used.
This upcoming school year will be my third time through a 5th-grade core curriculum.
Each time, I change a few things in order to reflect that child’s personality and learning styles, but this year, I’ve changed so much that only the basic structure has remained.
I believe there are other homeschool parents who would like to modify the materials they have in order to best accommodate their child’s learning needs—which is one of the big reasons why we homeschool in the first place, right?
Easily Plan Your Curriculum:
Here are a four easy steps to help you get started creating or modifying your own curriculum.
1. Decide upon a basic theme or structure.
We like to use a history and literature based theme.
This year, we are studying Eastern Hemisphere cultures.
Some other possibilities include North American History, World History following the Reformation, or African History.
2. Select all of the books and materials that you plan to use.
I’m a visual learner, so I make a special Pinterest board to gather and easily see all of my ideas for the year.
3. Plan a basic outline of when you will study each subject.
I go “old-school” for this and just use pen and paper, but a spreadsheet would work well for this task.
Just make a chart with days across the top and each subject down the side.
Look at the table of contents for number of lessons or add up the number of activities you want to accomplish in each subject.
Divide that by 36 weeks (the typical number of weeks in a school year) and that tells you how many times that subject needs to be studied per week.
For example, I know we need to have math 4 times a week, but we’ll only do dictation twice weekly.
I make an X in the box to show which days we’ll study that subject.
Think about your extra-curricular activities, too, when making this chart.
4. Make lesson plans for the year.
What?!! It’s much easier than it sounds.
Just make 36 copies (one for each week) of the chart you made in step 3 and start plugging in lesson numbers, names of books to read, etc.
Here’s my son’s lesson plan from week 22 last year.
This was written by Jenn from Whole Child Homeschool.