Sunday, September 3, 2023

Homeschool Plans: 2023-2024

This school year will be my fifth official year of homeschooling, and I will have three students - M., C., and E. Because these three girls have fall birthdays, they all did a year of kindergarten the year they turned five, so while the state of Maryland classifies them as 4th grade, 2nd grade, and kindergarten, we think of them as being in 5th, 3rd, and 1st, and they work at all different levels in all different subjects. 

Social Studies 

M. has completed the first phrase of the trivium, so she will be doing the Ancients at the logic level this year. E. will be doing the same time period at the grammar level. 

M. will be reading The World in Ancient Times textbook series, including the volume of primary documents, and we will discuss the material and supplement with related video series, including Between the Rivers, History of Ancient Egypt, History of India, From Yao to Mao, Ancient Greek Civilization, History of Ancient Rome, Maya to Aztec and Lost Worlds of South America. 

With E., I will be reading aloud A Child's History of the World by V.M. Hillyer and supplementing with  most of the same picture books and videos M. and C. read their first year.

C. is in year three of the grammar stage, and she will be studying the Late Renaissance and Early Modern periods with Daddy using books by Genevieve Foster and the same videos and supplemental reading M. used two years ago. 

Together, all three girls will learn about important geographical and architectural landmarks from The Book of Marvels


We designed our own physics curriculum for Meg with Secrets of the Universe by Paul Fleisher as her spine. She will be watching video demonstrations starring Julius Sumner Miller and simulations from PhET at the University of Colorado, and doing experiments independently using Janice VanCleave's Physics for Every Kid. 

Though we are still technically using Building Foundations for Scientific Understanding as our science curriculum for C. and E., I wanted a change, so we chose The Golden Treasury of Natural History as our spine for learning about our main subjects of plants and animals. At the end of the year, we will do a quick unit on magnetism to finish out the two-year course we've been on. 


M. will continue her work with Rex Barks, as well as with Vocabulary from Classical Roots. She will also be writing narrations to accompany her history, with the goal of learning to identify and communicate the main ideas of the chapters she reads. 

C. will begin sentence diagramming this year. She will also do some narrations.

E. will work through Grammarland by listening to the lessons and completing the worksheets for each one. She will work on narrating her history and science lessons. 

Additionally, we will have daily read-alouds. The plan is to have one historical fiction and one realistic or fantasy title going at all times. We will also read one Shakespeare play per month and do a weekly poetry lesson from Poem Making by Myra Cohn Livingston. 


All three girls will begin Latin together this year. We'll be using Getting Started with Latin. We will also continue to memorize prayers and psalms in Latin and to attend the Latin Mass once a month. 


The girls kept up with math all summer, so everyone is already well into their work for this year. 

M. is doing algebra on Khan Academy and will be doing the review sections of Singapore Primary Mathematics 5A. 

C. is working on third grade math on Khan Academy and Singapore 3B. 

E. is working on Early Math on Khan Academy and will be working on Singapore 1A. 

M. will move into Life of Fred: Decimals and C. will begin Life of Fred: Farming. M. and C. will continue to drill math facts using online flashcards, but we will be reducing the frequency from daily to weekly. 


E. will begin her two-year preparation for First Communion using The St. Joseph First Communion Catechism. M. and C. who have received First Communion, will move into the New St. Joseph Baltimore Catechism Volume 1, and we will take that at whatever pace they can manage it. 


M. will be finishing The Body Book for Girls, and C. will begin to read it. 

E. will study human body systems using the resources from Kids Health. 


This year, art will mainly be covered by the material in The Book of Marvels, but the girls will also create art using how-to-draw videos, craft kits, and various media. 


All three girls will continue playing piano and recorder and learning to sing. E. is using the Denes Agay Primer and Hands on Recorder, C. is using Denes Agay Book 2, 50 Graded Studies for Recorder, and Recorder Time, and M. is using Denes Agay Book 3 and The Recorder Guide.

Music appreciation will most likely include a mix of ballet, opera, and musicals.

Physical Education 

We got a good jump-start on PE with all three girls practicing their swimming at the pool this summer. They will continue to ride bikes and play on the playground, and hopefully they will get a chance to practice more with their basketball. We may also reintroduce the morning warm-up exercises they did a few years back. 


R. and A. are three and a half, so this year is preschool for them. We will be doing some good read-alouds and making sure to review their letters and numbers. I expect their learning to pick up a lot more in the second half of the year, as they are still quite young compared to their sisters when they were starting preschool. 

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