I hate lesson plans. They don’t fit my personality. But there comes a time and place when most homeschool families need them, or so I learned the hard way when my oldest started making her own lesson plans in 5th grade. Here’s what I learned from that point on. Use date-free lesson plans! This is part six of my Top Ten Tips for Homeschooling series. Find links to the other tips below.
Date-free lesson plans:
- Date-free lesson plans are best made only one quarter of the year at a time. This allows you to change direction through the year if you want to drop a course that’s not working or add a course of new interest. (I love adding new electives each quarter, just for the love of learning.)
- Lesson plans work best undated. If you have a system with columns representing the days of the week, don’t add the date to these columns! Let the boxes represent what you would like to accomplish in a week, but don’t limit yourself to the exact day of the week in which that work might be done. An undated lesson planner allows you to stop and start your work to accommodate illness, a spontaneous field trip, or an emergency. After a break, planned or unplanned, pick up where you left off and keep going. You have 365 days in the year to complete about 180 days of work. Pace yourself as needed!
- Remember that certain personalities will respond differently to lesson plans. Provide structured lesson plans for the dutiful, hard-working child that craves routine. Offer flexible date-free lesson plans for the artistic, feelings-driven child that craves space. Both need your guidance and grace.
How about you? Have you ever tried using date-free lesson plans?
Top Ten Tips for Homeschooling Series