I have struggled with homeschooling now for over eleven years but I think that I have finally found a way to integrate the homeschooling into our lives. Its not fool proof yet and it is a work in progress, but I am learning the way that God wants for us to arrange it right now anyway.
We have a chore chart that my husband made and I love it. I has magnets for marking the finished chores and the kids like moving their magnets around. If you would like to order one let us know. We would like to offer these on a regular basis here at FNOAD if there is enough interest.
The charts are laid out with lines and then there is room for names on the side. We could customize that for you with colorful foam lettering. Then there is room at the top of the chart for writing in your chores specific to your own home and children. We have tried different ways to write them and added certain ones and taken off certain ones for different children.
Now we are using this same chart to add in homeschooling. I have added math copy work, plus a little math word problem from bedtimemath.org, bible copy work, reading for a prescribed amount of time, etc. I started out with just a little and then we are adding more today. I really like how this is working out. I spend some time on Mondays or even when I see something on the web on another day and work that into the chart.
I will print out their papers to copy and leave them on their bulletin boards so that they can remove them and take them to a chair and write out their work. With the reading I write out which book they are to read and how many minutes a day I combine this with History for the older children by including a G.A. Henty book. You can get many Henty books free from Amazon.com. Just look up free kindle books. You can also get a free kindle application for your personal computer. There is also a web site for knowing which books of Henty are for what historical study and their chronological order.
Science is still in the works right now I am looking for a good free source to draw from that I am comfortable with as a Christian Mom. If you have any good ideas that would work with our new system, please let me know. They need to be relatively self workable. My days are filled with cleaning and helping and encouraging and right now I can't stop for long periods of time to instruct. There are certain curriculum that we like but right now free is our only option. Please let us know if you have come across something you think might work for us by providing the link in the comments. Thanks!
Since I wrote this the Lord led me to a great web site called allinonehomeschool.wordpress.com. The curriculum there is totally free and has several levels to choose from on the side bar. Two of the kids have started to use it and have really enjoyed it. I'm planning on getting everyone started on it eventually after the younger ones have gone through the First Reader they recommended.
Zach has come up with a great way to encourage the children to do their chores. He has made a evil chore villain who tries to still the children's chores. He named him "Magna Man" and every day when they start their chores for the day he builds him up with all of the pink finished chore magnets and when someone finishes a chore they can take that chore magnet from "Magna Man" and he shrinks a little in size. The kids are really liking him and it does encourage them.
Another thing that has been an encouragement to us is a nice young lady from the church. She has told them that she will come by sometime during the week and those who are mostly finished with their chores with get to go somewhere special with her, such as the park or one time they even went up the street to the fire station. They were really happy that they did their chores.
Ordering the Chore Chart-If you would like to try this system for your children we can make you a custom chore chart. Contact me at: email@example.com for pricing information.