By: Krystle Crossman
When you are new to home-schooling your child, figuring out a curriculum can be tricky and time consuming. You often do far more than you need to do and end up getting frustrated and bogged down because you think you need to cram so much information into such a small amount of time. One home-school mom says that the three basic principles that helped her to simplify her curriculum were: Integrate, do less, and learn that there are limitations to published materials. Below is some of her advice on how to make curriculums easier and less stressful.
1. Integration: When you choose reading material for your kids, try to pick something that has a bunch of lessons all in one so that you can get the most out of your time. Go through the book slowly and really cover all of the material that is inside. For example, if you read a book like Robin Hood you can get in depth with lessons about giving to others that have less than you do, that stealing is wrong, and teach them about nature as well (since they live in a forest). You can throw in some math as well by asking them thing such as, “If Robin Hood took four apples from a rich man’s home and then gave out two, how many other people can he give apples to?” There you will have math, reading, language, and life skills all in one.
2. Doing Less: You do not need to cram as much information in as you think you do. Doing less and going more in depth with the subject material will give your kids a much better understanding of it and will help prepare them for college if they choose to go. Take your time and go through the information slowly. If you are trying to teach every subject that you can fit in within one day, your child will not be learning as much as if you concentrated on one or two subjects in depth. Select your topics carefully and make sure that they will be the best fit for what you would like to teach your children and what will help them succeed.
3. There are limits to a curriculum: Printed books and the “curriculums” that you buy to use during home-schooling are just meant as guides. They are not meant to be the only thing that you teach your children. You are allowed to step outside of the box and figure out new and creative lessons. You can even toss aside a book that you don’t think is going to help your children learn and go find other outside materials. It is all about what works best for you and your child. It does take some time to figure that out but once you do you will all be better off.