Favorite Books for Homeschool Planning
It’s that time of year again when homeschoolers around the globe begin that arduous and exciting task of planning for the new school year. Some homeschooling families enjoy year-round schooling, but our family generally likes to take the summer off as best we can because we have so much bad weather all winter and spring (aka RAIN) that by the time summer shows itself, we just want to play play play! Can you relate?
Homeschool planning is not something I do overnight, or on any given day, it takes a while for me to compile book lists and ponder materials we have used in the past, and contemplate anything new that we may want to try. I always re-visit some old friends off my shelves to garner some inspiration and to recall what has always worked for us as living a lifestyle of learning in our home.
I want to share with you some of my favorite go-to homeschool planning books that I use every year.
My Favorite Homeschool Planning Books
A Charlotte Mason Education by Catherine Levison – I love the charts in the back of this book that lays out a weekly schedule that CM’s students used for a six-day school week. Charlotte Mason breaks them down in to 1st-3rd, 4th-6th, 7th & 8th, and a 9th grade schedule. Then the author includes her weekly schedule (at the time of writing c. 2000) and gives a very realistic overview of how easy it is to fit in a wide and liberal education each day based on your own family schedule. Love this! And it totally works for us too 🙂
More Charlotte Mason Education also by Catherine Levison – This second book goes more in depth than the first book and has an excellent chapter dedicated to High School. Many homeschoolers think you have to ditch the Charlotte Mason method once they hit high school, but this is not true at all. In fact, we have found that it’s just as effective for high school. Charlotte Mason’s Form IV & V are considered the high school years with plenty of rigor for college prep and beyond.
Designing Your Own Classical Curriculum by Laura Berquist – I love this book mainly for its booklists and its Catholic content, which is timeless for us and infallible. I started homeschooling with Laura Berquist’s Mother of Divine Grace Kindergarten syllabus when Emma was 4 1/2 and it’s been a mainstay for us ever since. Many excellent suggestions for copywork and studied dictation that spans all 12 years of school. Great resource.
The Well-Trained Mind by Susan Wise Bauer – I probably don’t need to say much about this well-used book, but I appreciate how detailed and thorough this book is for homeschoolers wanting a very rigorous curriculum beginning in early elementary school. I choose bits and pieces of her ideas and use what works for us. The program used in its complete form has always been a bit overkill in my opinion, but you can be assured to cover all subjects very well if you opt to go all in 🙂 Many excellent booklists included as well.
Because I have scanned these books repeatedly for well over a decade, I am quite familiar with their contents, but it’s always refreshing to peek at all my old notes and reminders of what we like about each of these resources.
I also frequent many online sources, booklists and websites to help encourage my planning :)I consult my favorite online Catholic Homeschool provider, Homeschool Connections, for any new classes that fit the bill for the new year, at least for middle school or high school.
And I include a generous perusal of the Ambleside Online site and stick pretty close to their suggestions for history and literature.
With these resources and books in my back pocket, I have a great chances for planning a successful and enjoyable homeschool year for all!
What are your favorite homeschool books or resources for planning out your year?