Friday, September 28, 2007

Starting Homeschooling

Sorry I've been on hiatus, but we just started homeschooling again. I'm with the Classical Conversations program, and our group just started this past Tuesday. So - given that right now, I am busier than I have ever been in my entire life - I put off starting school till the group program started.

So I spent last week organizing homeschool material that will hopefully be moved into the new addition sometime next month. But right now I am fortunate to be able to fit everything into a computer armoire, due to my husband's generosity in buying it for me when it was on sale two years ago. The armoire hides the messy avalanche that schoolwork had become over the summer, but now the avalanche is eradicated and safely filed and labeled in our file box system.

Everything else is organized in four wooden magazine files from IKEA (which sadly, don't fit binders, their one flaw), two metal bins which slide onto shelves below, and in a desk organizer, which is not the Truly Useful Object it pretends to be, but is painted red and (to me) looks beautiful.

One selling point for me of Classical Conversations was the sparse amount of material it involves. Working on the one-room-schoolhouse model (which is the model of the typical homeschooler with multiple ages in one "classroom"), all the curriculum is gathered in one 200 page book (in the red folder). The Essentials of the English Language program, for my older students, fits into one thick binder, and this year I had the inspiration to gather spare looseleaf, page protectors, spelling lists, reference guides, and anything else I had trouble laying my hands on quickly last year into one large Homeschool Binder.

For fun, I copied blocks of Morris prints off the Internet and used some demo Arts and Crafts fonts from Fontcraft to create some fun and beautiful covers for the clunky plastic binders. See below:

Wanting to share my fun idea, I'll see if I can figure out how to upload more generic versions as PDF files and attach them to this post.

So -- the school year begins! (Better late than never!) Happy schooling everyone!


LeeAnn said...

We are all relaxing after a busy day at homeschool co-op at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton church in Bothell, WA. Exhausting but the kids really enjoy it! I'll be curious to hear about your experience with Classical Conversations. Looking at their website, it's hard to tell what their material is like--you must have friends that already are part of the group? I agree though, that one curriculum for many children is a lot easier than trying to do something different in history, literature, science and so on for all the grades. I would love to hear some examples of lessons from literature.

Love those William Morris patterns! And your homeschool nook looks so tidy and fun. We are homeschooling in the dining room so unfortunately all the school stuff is looking at us all the time, but it's more motivation to keep it neat, I guess. I bet you are happy to almost be moving into the addition!

clanmama said...

Hello. I found this blog while looking for ideas for homeschool organization ideas. Anyway I read your profile blurb and you described perfectly my life, and put it into beautiful perspective for me. Well said.