I love planning if you currently couldn’t tell by the title of this blog. But, when it came to planning our school year out it took way less time than anticipated. Since currently switching to year round schooling I knew we were not going to take a huge summer break, leaving room for more breaks throughout our school year. What I didn’t know is how that really was going to look like in the end. I did three simple steps to plan the whole year and it took all but five minutes to do.
You first want to get a calendar of the current full year that you are planning out. I got mine of Google and printed it off, just search year calendar or printable year calendar. You will also want two different color highlighters; one for your days off and one to mark the days you will be schooling. When you have those 3 things we can begin:
Step #1: Look at and highlight the days when you need to or want to NOT school.
Knowing when you want to have off days will help guarantee not being conflicted between schooling vs family time or even mom time. Take into account holiday weekends that usually are spent doing bbq’s with friends and family. Another example you will see on my yearly calendar most of July is marked off from school. That's because we have a family vacation that month. I do not want to have the stress of packing us on our trip on top of homeschooling or even unpacking when we return home while schooling. I left room in our schedule to have down time before and after or family trip so I do not have too many things on my plate.
Step #2: Next pick up the other colored highlighter, to fill in the weeks you will actually plan school.
For this step, I feel like I am a wee bit different than others for I started basically marking everything that was left in my school year. I didn’t count days or weeks or any of that kind of thing before I began to highlight. Once I finished highlighting - I than looked into how many days we would be doing school. Bringing us to step three:
Step #3: Counting school days.
This is the step you look into how many days you have highlighted to do school. Depending on the state you live in, you may be required to school such and such number of days per school year or weeks in your school year. I currently do not have any day requirement living in the state of California. However, I do try to stick to a school year of around 32 weeks, based on it’s easier I found to manage and plan out curriculum. In this step, if you have too many day’s you are schooling, pick up that other highlighter and mark some more days off. Or if you have too many breaks figure out where you can add more school days in that work into your families schedule.
That’s truly all it takes to get your whole school year planned out in five minutes. Don’t over think it! It is not rocket science, you have the freedom to school when you want to and take breaks when you want to!
One tip before I let you leave. If you look at my month of December you will see a week that has both highlighter colors on it. It is a week we don’t have to school, its extra in my book. So, I am going to play that week by ear. If I feel at the time we are way ahead in curriculum or we have a lot of Christmas activities planned outside the house I may take the week off. Or on the opposite end of that, if I feel like my kids don’t need such a long Christmas break I may school that week. You may have a few weeks in your year that may look like this and that’s okay. You can put both colors there and when the time gets closer than decide.
I hope this was helpful to you and if you have any questions please leave a comment and I will be glad to help answer them or point you to someone that may know.
WAIT: one last thing, than I will be done. If you find that your calendar looks too messy and you had to add more days than expected or take away days, PLEASE just print off another calendar and make a final copy. Then you will have this nice new homeschool yearly calendar all ready to go!