How do you assign school for your children? In our Home School we have text books for most subjects, and my goal is to complete each book in the number of school days we have. So I start the year by making assignment charts, which is a lot of work! But it saves me lots in the long haul because all year long I never have to think about it again, just check the chart for progress.
Here's what they look like at the beginning of the year:
I take the number of school days and divide their page numbers by that number of days. To get the number of days, I sit down with a calender and write each school day date on the date line of the calender (every 7th line in this case, since there are 6 "subject" lines).
As I go, I try and mark off any days I know we won't have school: Christmas break, holidays, birthdays, and field trip days I'm aware of. I also try and plan lighter assignments on the particular week days my homeschool group typically has field trips. Usually Wednesdays this year.
Once the dates are completed, then I know how many school days, or school weeks, we will have. I look over each text book and decide if it is better divided into weekly assignments or daily, depending on the type of coursework. Math is a daily assignment, one lesson a day. Science is mostly reading, so it's every other day, more pages per assignment since it's easy to read.
After it's broken into the assignment sizes (I pencil these in the front cover of each book, like: "2 pages per day"), I write the page numbers to be completed in each and every box, turning the pages of the book as I assign. That way I can find any surprises as I go. (blank pages, extra quiz sheets, etc.) So a row of math assignments would read like this under each date: pg1-2, pg3-4, pg5-6... etc. Writing Lessons are assigned in 2 page lesson numbers, so each box reads "L1, L2, L3..." all the way up to L125! I repeat until every single page or lesson is assigned and able to be "stickered off." :) Sounds like a lot, but it's worth it not to have to figure where you "should" be later!
When the school year gets started, I inevitably find a book that didn't work like I had hoped, or needed assigned differently. For that reason, I do all my assignments in pencil until I'm sure they are right. (note the scribbled out subject lines on Mayda's chart in the background.)
This is our second year doing it that way and so far we are on track to wrap up the year early. It helps that my kids LOVE sticker charts.
It works really well for us, but I love to hear how others assign their homeschool courses. Feel free to leave your ideas in the comments below!
4/27/12 Update: We finished school early! The charts really helped us stay on task and motivated. I know that not every system works for every family, but I'm very thankful to have found what works for us!
Awana, our home-school Bible curriculum
Fastnacht Day - our Donut experiment
Homeschool Working Lunch (just for fun, photo post)
Literacy Awareness and Dr. Seuss's Birthday