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Monday, May 07, 2012

A New School Year!

In the realm of homeschooling, we are trying to get things arranged for a more year round approach.  Our goal is to be able to take advantage of the nice days and be inside doing school when we'd rather not be outside.

With this in mind, I was seriously looking into next year's curriculum in April - needing to order it before school ended in May.  We now have things arranged so that our school year will actually run from May 2012 - April 2013; May 2013 - April 2014; etc.  Why May through April?

Mostly because that is how it worked for this year - we didn't want to have too big of a break right now because the kids will have a bigger break come September when the baby comes.  But we also chose this because the kids can remain in the same 'year' as if they were in public school. (They will only be a month off.) That way, if we decide to send them to public school sometime down the road, we will just finish their current year in April and they'll have a nice long vacation before they start public school the following August.

For the 2012-2013 school year, Abi will be in THIRD grade and Nathan started FIRST!  We decided that with age, baby, and everything else, we weren't starting Jonny on any formal schooling until he turned 5 in January.  Then he'll do a shortened preschool/kindergarten prep course and start Kindergarten in May of 2013.

I totally believe it was a Divine appointment that I started looking at curriculum when I did because when I got it in, Nathan was at the PERFECT spot in his Reading/Language Arts courses.  We use Christian Light Education's (CLE) Light Units (LU) and their Learning to Read program doubles as a Kindergarten and First Grade Starter Reading program.  They mix their Reading programs with their Language Arts program so the children get a double introduction to many key issues.

During Nathan's Kindergarten year, he completed LU 1-5.  He was actually finishing 5 when I got the new curriculum and noticed that the First Grade Language Arts starts with LU 5 Learning to Read.  They also offer Review Sheets for the Learning to Read program and so it worked perfectly to start him on FIRST grade right then, use the review sheets and follow their Course Outline.

The bottom line to that whole story is that Nathan has actually been in First Grade for a few weeks. But since Abigail's SECOND grade courses didn't finish until May 4th, we had to do a bit of juggling this first year.  But next year, they will hopefully both be starting the same week.

From what I have quickly calculated, we will have 205 'available' days of school.  That is taking off birthdays, general holidays, and September for the baby.  Since Kansas Law states an equivalent of 186 days, we should be well within our requirements.

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