Saturday, 28 May 2011

Homeschooling How We Do It

Little-N is now 7 and it's been a year since I stopped working in a school and have set up my own homeschooling classroom. I haven't written much about what we do throughout the week, so I thought of taking this opportunity to write about what we do on our homeschooling adventure.

My week is extremely busy and full, I really don't have enough time in my life to do all the things I must do. I've taken on too much, but it's all got to be done and there is no one else to do it. I follow a schedule to make sure I get the balance right between family, home, business and teaching Little-N. This is how a typical week would be spent.

Monday- Wednesday:

Monday - Wednesday we have our homeschooling class from 9-1. This is the core time that me and Little-N spend in the classroom, we are joined by four other homeschooled children. We have a three hour work cycle, in which the children work with the materials and have a free snack. After the work cycle the children typically play outside till 1 and then go home.

Once the children go home, Little-N helps me prepare lunch. We sit and eat together. Next we do a quick tidy up, making sure everything is in it's place and clean. At 2 we are joined by another student. This student is 13 and is also homeschooled, he comes to me 3 days a week for 1.5 hours of tutoring. I am taking him through the later Montessori materials and he loves it. The student's Aunt teaches Little-N Arabic, so while I'm tutoring, Little-N has his Arabic lessons which he loves.

We finish the lessons at 3.30, and by that time I desperately need a break! Little-N will go off and do some independent reading and I will sit at my laptop checking emails and reading all your lovely blogs. After that I begin my chores of cooking, cleaning, washing and well I'm sure you know the lot. While I am doing my chores Little-N with either be helping, reading or playing. At some point in the day I try to take Little-N out to the park, we usually organise this with friends so that Little-N has some company. Later in the evening we water the garden and Little-N goes to bed at 8.30. While he's sleeping I spend hours making new materials and preparing for the next day.


Thursday used to be my FREE day where I didn't teach and I got to do other things that needed to be done. However I am now tutoring on Thursday mornings. While I tutor, Little-N has an Arabic lesson. On Thursday I try to spend some extra time with Little-N doing activities that we don't get to do while other children are around.


Friday is my meeting day where I am helping out the new Montessori school. We meet from the morning and the meetings usually last till 3. The meetings are at my home as the school is not set up yet. During the meetings Little-N usually plays in the garden, reads or draws. After the meeting, Little-N usually goes out with a friend of mine who often takes him to museums or parks, if I don't have to much work to do I join them.

Saturday and Sunday

These days are the family days, Little-N gets to see his cousins and other family members. My husband's family are Turkish, Turks are known for their love of barbecues, so we usually have a barbecue and Little-N loves that. We are very blessed to have married into a lovely and close family. At some point on Saturday Gem [my husband] will give Little-N a religious lesson, Little-N is learning so much from these lessons.

On Sunday Little-N attends a drama and story telling class that is run by a close friends of mine. He loves going to this class, he'll come home with a buzz singing new songs. Sunday evening is spent preparing the classroom for Monday.

Although we only spend three work cycles in the classroom, Little-N is learning throughout the day. My home is set up in a way that he is always reading, writing or playing beneficial games. At the moment, as I write this, Little-N is writing a love letter to me! He is very independent and will usually find educational things to do throughout the day. I'll post more later about what he has available to him in the environment that aids his independent learning.


Annicles said...

It is very interesting to see what you get up to. I can see what you mean about overstretched!

It will be interesting to find out how your home-schooling developes over the years. I know it is ages away but are you planning on Little-N doing GCSE's and A-levels, or an international bachaloriat or something like that?

There is a school near Bury St Edmunds (called Culford school)that has six scholarships to support home-schooled children through public exams and that give the opportunity to use facilities, such as science labs.

I think you are very brave. I couldn't home school my children.

N from the Learning Ark said...

Annicles, yes when Little-N is ready he'll be doing the International Bachaloriat. I think we will do them one at a time and start when he is 11, beginning with the subjects that he is great at. I have big plans for his Secondary education and it will be more like the Montessori Erdkinder. Little-N has dreams, he wants to go to Oxford or Cambridge University. I'm not sure we will be able to afford it, however I will train him economically so that he can be self efficient and be able to finance himself. My aim in homeschooling is not to teach him, but to prepare him for the life ahead!

Gigi said...

Sounds like a good schedule. I do know about being overstreched.
I like having other people children's to teach or tutor because it makes me accountable!
Will you be planning to work at the new Montessori School. Sounds interesting. Would love to hear more about it. I may have missed the post about that.

N from the Learning Ark said...

Gigi, thank you for your comment. I will be working in the Montessori school, but only part time as a consultant. This will enable me to continue homeschooling Little-N. How is your homeschooling going? I would love to hear more.