Lesson Planning

There are lots of ways to lesson plan- no one way is right or wrong.  You have to find what works for you and your family.  So here are what the coming week’s lesson plans look like at my house…



Yes, I use a notebook.  I have a letter for each subject (for example, “M” is math).  I write down the lesson number for the day.  At the bottom, I make myself a reminder to work on spelling, writing and Classical Conversations memory work  (which includes our history and science studies) daily.

When we first started homeschooling, I tried fancy planners. I tried folders for each subject (which may work well in the very early years), but I find this works best for me.  It’s simple and a notebook is pretty inexpensive.

One thing I will note is I prefer to write in pencil.  Then if we need to change plans, I am able to easily do so.

One thing you will not see in the photo, but I try to do each week, is write any activities we have each day (such as piano lessons) and then I’ll often make a note about what to fix for dinner that evening.  I’ll also include any early or late work meetings I may have as well.

Let me encourage you to find a lesson planning schedule that works for your family.  You do not have to use my method to be successful..




Use your library…

Reading is certainly an important part, if not the foundation, of education.  Especially when it comes to history and science, we often use our local library to check out books on the subject of study.  It’s also a great way to save a little money while homeschooling.

I try to plan out our Classical Conversations schedule so I know about a week ahead if I need to ask our library to order a book from another one so we have it in time.  When you work and homeschool, planning is often key in this situation.

If you haven’t tried it already- use your local library.

Valentine’s Day Love Bugs

The students in our homeschool community are able to bring treats to share for Valentine’s Day.  My daughter and I looked on Pinterest, found something similar, and then came up with our own Love Bugs….



These were fairy quick to make.  I found some jumbo heart confetti and glued it to a Hunt’s Snack Pack cup.   Then we added the eyes and a bead for the nose.  Finally, we cut white pipe cleaner in half and formed a “v” shape and added beads at each end.

I’m sure you can make these with applesauce or pudding too.

Have you made a cute treat for your student’s Valentine’s Day?  I’d love to hear about it!



So you work and homeschool- what do you eat?

This is another question I’m often asked.  You work outside the home, you homeschool, you often have evening commitments- what do you cook?  (Confession time, cooking is not my favorite activity.)

Sometimes, it’s carry out.  Truth be told, it’s often from the slow cooker at dinner.  I usually am up by 5 am each day, so that’s a great time to start the slow cooker with a soup or whole chicken.  Sometimes, I prepare something that I can start in the slow cooker when I get home in the afternoon so it does not over cook- things like meatballs and baked potatoes.  (I own four slow cookers, it not uncommon for me to have two on at the same time.

Today it’s Taco Soup.  I’ll fix up a quick salad to serve with it and that’s dinner.

Studying History…

We love studying history at our house!  One thing by daughter has enjoyed this year, that I mentioned earlier this week, was reading Story of the World.  She has read Volume 1 (available on Amazon at  http://amzn.to/2kNmVyf) and is almost finished with Volume 2 (available on Amazon at http://amzn.to/2kowDcF).  There are four volumes total to the book series and workbooks are available as well.  (We have yet to try the workbooks.)

If your child loves history, this may be something you would enjoy as a read aloud or they may enjoy reading alone.  As a mom who works outside the home, I sometimes find it works best for us if she has something she enjoys reading on her own.  (If you purchase from the links above, a small portion of the proceeds will go to support this site.  Thank you.)

World Wars I and II Resource


Currently we are studying WWII- and just finished WWI.  (Our history schedule does go along with Classical Conversations.)  One resource I have found helpful, and you may too, is The World Wars, An Introduction to the First & Second World Wars by Usborne Books.

This book is packed full of information and engaging photos.  My daughter has really enjoyed reading it.

We often use the library as a resource for books on subjects we are studying, but given this is a topic we study for several weeks (and will in future years as well), I decided to purchase the book.

If Usborne still publishes this book, I am unaware.  I found my copy on Ebay.



The Employed Mom’s Schedule

A question I’m often asked by friends and family is how I manage to work outside the home and homeschool our daughter.  Truly, in many ways, it takes a village.

Our day tends to be more in blocks of time than specifics, but for those who really want to know, I start school at 6:30 am most days.  But, that’s what works best for this morning person.  I encourage you to do what works for your family.

Before I go to work we do language arts and math.  Depending on how the morning is running, we may also work on spelling and my student may practice piano.

When I go to work, I have some options.  On a rare (and I do mean rare) occasion, she may go with me.  She may go with my husband.  She may go elsewhere for care.  While there I send the things she needs to work on, but does not necessarily need me to stand over the top of her.  She does handwriting, reading (and we always talk about it later), her Classical Conversations memory work and sometimes some extra math practice.  Sometimes I assign a journal or creative writing.  She also is reading through the Story of the World series.  She is currently on Volume 2, which you can find here: http://amzn.to/2jrRyMB   (If you purchase though my link, a small portion of the proceeds go to this site.  Thank you for your support.)

In the afternoon/ evenings, we often work on additional science and history and geography using Classical Conversations as our guide.  She also has some type of physical education activity at some point each day.

The key to working outside the home is finding the balance that works for you.  Most days I work 5 hours a day out of the home at 4 days per week.  My day off is our community day for Classical Conversations.  We often also have school on Saturdays, especially if she is working on a special project.

So can you work outside the home and homeschool?  Absolutely.  It took me a long time to find a schedule that works.  You will find something that works for you…keep plugging away at it!