The Homeschool Minute ~ Back to Homeschool … Already?!

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Back to Homeschool … Already?!
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Mercy Every Minute   

The Wuehler Family

I really need a fresh start, which is why planning for the new school year brings great refreshment, and it comes right when I feel like I need to just scrap everything and start over! Anyone else feel that way?

Some of you plan years in advance what you will be studying and the curriculum you will use. Some plan during the summer for the next year. Some of you are very detailed oriented and some are not. Some plan each morning, and some of you wait until the end of the day and write down what really happened. God can use all these methods as they are yielded to Him. Seek Him FIRST, and God will give you wisdom for each child, and strength to carry it through. What I’ve learned about planning:

  • Plan to make pursuing God your family’s main purpose; don’t just add God to your own cleverly devised plans. Don’t ask Him to follow you and bless you; follow Him and bless Him.
  • Our life is not our own to do with as we please, but to do what would please God. In the same way, our children are not ours to do with as we please, but to do what would please Him.
  • After prayer, evaluate each child, do some research, make a simple plan, and present it to your spouse. Pray together, and then listen to what they have to say! They see things from a different perspective, so be willing to adapt the plan.
  • Plan to give God’s Word and prayer preeminence in your school day, and He will bless your efforts in the academics. He has a way of filling in gaps with knowledge and wisdom that we know nothing of.
  • “Be confident of this very thing: that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6)
  • “For in Him we live, and move, and have our being . . .” (Acts 17:28).
  • “I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me” (Psalm 57:2).

Take heart in this: if you are seeking God, His wisdom, and His ways for each child, He will be faithful to lead you–today, and in the new school year. We gain strength and confidence by staying close to the Lord’s side, doing His will in His strength for His children.


 P.S. Lots of practical planning help, like deciding your options between public, private or home education, how to select the right curriculum (Mary Hood), the one essential ingredient (ZanTyler), using notebooks for organizing (Beverly Dillow), sample planning template (Jennifer Padgett), plus six other articles on planning for the new school year!

If you know someone new to homeschooling, our Homeschooling 101 Supplement has all the information necessary to start their journey, including planning templates!



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Planning. Doesn’t sound very exciting, does it? When we look back at our more than two decades of homeschooling, though, we see that the years we planned well were much more productive than the years we flew by the seat of our pants.

It’s not that hard, really. The most important thing is to figure out the pace you need to keep up to get your goals accomplished this year. To do that, open up your curriculum and read the notes to the teacher in the front, you know, the part we automatically skip over. That’s the part that will often tell you how much you need to do each week!

Even if your curriculum doesn’t tell you, just take a look at the table of contents. How many lessons are there in a year? Are there tests in addition to that? A typical school year is 180 days, that’s about 36 weeks. If there are something like 30-36 lessons, tests and activities, you need to do one per week. If there are 60-70 or so, two per week. If there are 150 to 180, you’ll need to do one per day. See, just divide it up!

Once you know how much to do each week, you are pretty much set. You don’t want to plan each individual day’s activity until the week before you need it since you won’t know until then which days will be busy with doctor’s appointments or commitments. When you plan the days the week before, though, you’ll know which day is better for projects or experiments and which days are better for self-directed work.

Of course, you don’t have to plan ahead. You can just open up the books each morning and “do the next thing.” We’ve done that, too, but sometimes you can have some unpleasant surprises when April comes and you realize you’ve somehow gotten too far behind. Don’t despair, though, it’s amazing how quickly you can catch up when you cut out the fluff and just put your head down and do it. We’ve been there, too!

We talked about planning on our podcast this week. Just click here and scroll down to listen to this week’s broadcast. Hint: We’ll give the link to a planning freebie!

If you don’t even want to think about planning because you feel like a homeschool failure, here’s help. Click this link to listen to our podcast on how to pick up the pieces and get going again!


Whether you plan or don’t, we hope you have a school year that’s profitable academically, spiritually, and relationally–and we hope we do, too!

Your friends,

Hal & Melanie Young 


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OK, Mom, you already know what I’m going to say, but I might as well say it again. “Don’t think about school yet!!” You’ll have plenty of planning time in a couple of weeks. Just enjoy the last couple weeks of summer with your kids. School will be here soon enough.

I will give one more additional piece of advice on behalf of husbands everywhere: Tell us what you need from us.

I’m serious. We husbands want to help out, but most of the time we’re just too mannish to figure it out without your help.

So … if you need some planning time without kids or distractions, TELL your husband. Don’t be vague. Tell him WHEN and for how long.


If you need him to listen as you bounce some ideas off him, TELL HIM. Tell him when and for how long.

If you need his help to rearrange the school room, setting down the law with the kids, or doing anything else you can think of, TELL HIM. Tell him when and for how long. He wants to help you … he just won’t get it on his own. In fact, if you wait for him to figure it out and initiate it, you’ll be mighty disappointed.

OK, enough school thoughts. Go have some fun.

Be real,



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Being a member not only gives you FREE access to all of the The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine’s planners, it also gives you over 100 classes to fill those planners with! Check out our latest classes that debuted Monday:

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Homeschooling through High School and Beyond: The Best Years of Classical Education

Homeschooling through High School and Beyond: The Best Years of Classical Education

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