Block Schedule

After adding a third child into the mix I had to readjust our schedule once again.  I think I’ve finally found a schedule that fits us well.  It is relaxed enough to follow bunny trails and rigid enough to get everything done.  I decided to try out a block schedule.  A month on this schedule has convinced me to stick with this one.

Here are the basics:

1.5 hour block of things we need to tackle daily
15 minute active play break
2 hour block
Lunch
1 hour exercise
2.5 hour block

Now that I’ve listed the basics I will go in a bit more detail as to how it looks in our day to day life.

In the first 1.5 hour block we do:

  • Memory work
  • Handwriting
  • Math facts practice
  • Mandarin Tone Drill
  • Mandarin (3 times a week one-on-one with me and 2 times a week independently)
  • Arabic (4 times a week one-on-one with me and 1 time a week independently)
  • Greek (3 times a week one-on-one with me and 2 times a week independently)
  • Music lessons (1x week)  Instrument practice happens before school starts.

The other 2 academic blocks of 2 hours and 2.5 hours have rotating subjects.  Here is an example of our rotating subjects over a 2 week period.

March 12 – Language Arts 2 hour block and History/Geography 2.5 hour block
March 13 – Math and Logic 2 hour block and Language Arts 2.5 hour block
March 14 – Bible 2 hour block and Science 2.5 hour block
March 15 – Math and Logic 2 hour block and Language Arts 2.5 hour block
March 16 – Language Arts 2 hour block and Science 2.5 hour block
March 19 – Math and Logic 2 hour block and Science 2.5 hour block
March 20 – Bible 2 hour block and Language Arts 2.5 hour block
March 21 – Math and Logic 2 hour block and History/Geography 2.5 hour block
March 22 – Language Arts 2 hour block and Science 2.5 hour block
March 23 – Math and Logic 2 hour block and Language Arts 2.5 hour block

For each block I use a loop-style schedule so the Language Arts loop might look like this:

Typing
Killgallon
Daily Diagram
Rod and Staff Spelling
Jump In
Rod and Staff English
Webster’s Spelling
Excavating English
Jump In
Rod and Staff English
Rod and Staff Spelling
Spelling worksheet
Excavating English
Jump In

After spending about 45 minutes on literature we would find where we left off on this loop and continue until the block of time is completed.

My 3 year old who I recently added to the mix usually has free time during the first block of the day (1.5 hours) because I am pretty much working on foreign language with one of my other children during that time.  I did have a chunk of time set aside for her during my boys’ exercise time, but since the weather has warmed she prefers to spend that time making cakes and pies out of dirt.  So basically, she gets some time (if she wants it) during one of the 2 or 2.5 hour blocks if I am not working with her brothers.  She joins in some of her brothers’ activities sometimes too.  So far, I just have found that I’ve needed to adapt to her needs that can change from day to day.

I’ve very happy with this block schedule.  My boys like it too.  They aren’t too fond of the 2 hour math block though.  Basically we go through about 2 days worth of Singapore math with a page of IP and/or CWP and then spend any extra time in math-related activities like fantasy baseball, a fractal computer program, tanagram activities, or art-related math worksheets.

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