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View Full Version : Anyone ever teach year round?



HoustonHomeschoolers
02-16-2014, 02:36 PM
Yes its true, I am nuts. I am going to do some weeks of summer school, but I am considering doing it year round, but at a slower pace. Less daily book learning (one adhd kid, one LD kid) and more experience based learning...but year round. I do want them to be able to go back to public school, if it turns out that way, so I want them on track with the school system.

Crazy?

Teri
02-16-2014, 02:40 PM
I think a lot of us homeschool year round. For us, we scale way back and continue with math and foreign language. We might also do a special project or unit. I do it because we have a really busy fall with German dancing and it allows us to take days off when we need to then.
I originally started year round because they were difficult to get back into school mode when they had a lot of time off. Now, that is not the case, but it helps with retention in those subjects that tend to need a lot of review with a new school year.

twooakharborhicks
02-16-2014, 02:54 PM
We've always done year round, taking time off when we need to. My guy (also ADHD) retains things so much better that way. I also find that it gives us an attitude of all the time learning instead of free time vs. school time.

dbmamaz
02-16-2014, 02:58 PM
yeah, i go year round with quarterly 2-3 week breaks. summer is lighter but we definitely keep up with math

rebjc
02-16-2014, 03:25 PM
I plan to keep going in the summer but with some breaks in curriculum. I discussed it with my 1st grader and we agreed she can take a month off of Moving Beyond the Page. And for math to lighten the lesson planning for me, I plan to use Life of Fred over the summer rather than our math curriculum but return back to it in the fall.

Summer is really the worst time of year weather wise for us being torturously hot. So we are basically stuck inside all day long unless we go swimming and with multiple non swimmers the pool is a lot of work for me, and I can't do it every day. And another kiddo who gets overstimulated and melts down at the splash pad makes that a challenge too. That said we need more to keep us busy inside so it doesn't make sense for us to take a break from all school work during the summer.

farrarwilliams
02-16-2014, 03:52 PM
We've done different things. We used to not really stop. Now we do take more breaks and I've come to appreciate the whole idea of a break and how it resets us to have more energy for starting again. But we rarely take a break that's more than 3 weeks. Basically, we go year round.

Keiran'sMom
02-16-2014, 04:40 PM
I had never thought about year round, I had planned on staying close to the same schedule as the school system. During summer we have always done fun outdoor science things and crafty projects inside on really hot days. I guess I will see how he does and maybe during summer we will do like we always do and keep it more casual.

jess
02-16-2014, 05:12 PM
In theory, year-round school makes perfect sense to me. So much time in not-year-round school is spent reviewing stuff that is forgotten during the long break (maybe not a huge amount of time each year, but it adds up - if you're spending 1/10 of the year reviewing, then presumably you could make at least a year of extra progress if you didn't have to do that), and you don't need that long a break for psychological restoration.

I also like the idea of schooling heavier in the winter and summer when weather restricts outdoor activities, and encouraging more time outdoors during spring and fall, taking trips during the off-season, and so on.

In practice, I've been bad about implementing this.

dbmamaz
02-16-2014, 05:16 PM
if we arent doing school, we all spend way too much time on electronics, which is the real reason i limit breaks lol . . .but i NEED breaks for ME so i let them play on electronics all day for a couple of weeks so I can NOT be planning and enforcing all day long

ejsmom
02-16-2014, 05:17 PM
We do a lot of outdoorsy stuff and field trips in the fall and spring, and do more "bookish" work in the winter, and during the summer we spend more time doing projects in the subjects DS loves like foreign language, science, history, and art. Though it is much less formal during the summer and more unschool-like.

dbsam
02-16-2014, 05:31 PM
I would like to continue schooling through the summer because we haven't done enough this fall/winter. I mentioned it to the kids and they did not like the idea - at all. However, last year in our neighborhood all the kids went to summer school most of the summer from 7:30-1:00. So I reminded my kids about that fact and they are bit more open to doing some work through the summer.

zcat
02-17-2014, 12:47 AM
We go year round.
We are relaxed homeschoolers and take breaks as we need them. We never take longer than a week off.
We spend maybe 2-3 hours actively homeschooling 5 days per week.

Christen99
02-17-2014, 05:19 AM
We school year round, and we actually prefer it. It's easier for us, because the kids don't forget what they've learned, and we don't have to do any review. We also take very few breaks, but when we do take a day off during the middle of the week to sit on our butts for some reason...I don't feel guilty.

My kids actually do much better on a structured schedule (both are on the autism spectrum), and I have found it to be really difficult to get them back on track. They dislike it, I dislike it, so we no longer take long breaks (this is our 5th year). We do tend to go on more field trips during the spring and summer months though, which means slightly less table time, but more project based learning.

JenniferJ
02-17-2014, 08:14 AM
Not crazy! We school year round too! We lighten the load in the summers and hit the pools when temps are HOT (100+). We also take lots of trips and going through the summer with our work load allows us the liberty to do the trips and not feel so "behind" in school.

halfpint
02-17-2014, 02:36 PM
We do a lot of outdoorsy stuff and field trips in the fall and spring, and do more "bookish" work in the winter, and during the summer we spend more time doing projects in the subjects DS loves like foreign language, science, history, and art. Though it is much less formal during the summer and more unschool-like.

We do this sort of thing also. We're on a farm schedule, so while we don't stop teaching/learning in the summer, book time is quite limited. It's more of a "practice in the real world what you learned from a book" season. For example, math keeps going but would involve designing fences instead of book geometry. In the winter there is more reading/writing stuff.

quabbin
02-17-2014, 03:45 PM
We go year-round, with short days. I do a slight change in subjects during summer.

Avalon
02-17-2014, 04:11 PM
Summer is short and precious here, so I spend as much time as humanly possible outside from mid-June until the end of July (we get about 6 reliably good weeks). Usually by mid-August, the kids are getting bored and listless, so we start up agan gradually. It also depends on what kind of vacations or summer camps we have planned.

dbmamaz
02-17-2014, 07:53 PM
haha year summer here is 4 months of hell where we dont even like being outside after dark because its still in the 90s. Well, maybe i'm exaggerating a little . . . but most summers there are several weeks where its still in the 90s after dark. I have trouble getting my boys to wear anything other than crocs even in the winter.

Keiran'sMom
02-17-2014, 07:57 PM
haha year summer here is 4 months of hell where we dont even like being outside after dark because its still in the 90s. Well, maybe i'm exaggerating a little . . . but most summers there are several weeks where its still in the 90s after dark. I have trouble getting my boys to wear anything other than crocs even in the winter.


Yeah for us Mid June to Mid September most days are above 85 and usually in the 90s. Add to that the 100% humidity and we hate going outside day or night. After reading this board I am def leaning to all year long home schooling. I would rather have more relaxed days all year long than long breaks.

KittyP
02-17-2014, 08:21 PM
We have every intention of homeschooling year-round. I like knowing if we miss a bit here or there it's no big deal because we have three extra months on the traditional school year. We're pretty relaxed all year so summer probably won't be any more cut back than usual, just more outdoors-y and active.

Teri
02-17-2014, 08:33 PM
Our HOA pool is open April 15-Oct 15, if that gives you an idea of summer in Texas. ;) Mid 80s sounds divine. Upper 90s after dark, if not at midnight, is not unusual June-Sept.

ScienceGeek
02-17-2014, 08:38 PM
We never stop but we do slow down a bit in the summer and we do drop math if they finish a book/course we won't pick up a new one til August. We take our big vacation in Sept/Oct each year when other kids are in school. Our school days aren't very strenuous on the paperwork either so I don't feel bad about going year round.

Mariam
02-17-2014, 11:47 PM
We have every intention of homeschooling year-round. I like knowing if we miss a bit here or there it's no big deal because we have three extra months on the traditional school year. We're pretty relaxed all year so summer probably won't be any more cut back than usual, just more outdoors-y and active.

We are fairly relaxed throughout the year too. I keep thinking about all the things that we do during the summer that would count as field trips. Road trips to national parks and museums, outdoor activities. When we are at home we will continue to do more of the traditional math and reading. Though we are more unschooling with most subjects, we go where the interest takes us when it does.

Misha
02-21-2014, 02:57 AM
My kids have never been in PS, and to them hs'ing all year round is normal. We do keep it a bit more relaxed at certain times, but we always stick with basics.

It's far too hot here to do much in the summer, so we find summer to be a very active hs'ing period.

Emerald
02-21-2014, 10:07 AM
We're year-round. Breaks interrupt our mojo and we all love what we're doing too much to stop!

Emerald
02-21-2014, 10:29 AM
I'll add… LONG breaks interrupt our mojo. We take short ones (week or less) whenever we need one. :) Then I have three weeks scheduled as "off" or "light" after our newest baby is born in 7 weeks and two weeks off in August for a wedding and family vacation. We tend to go "off" or "light" between Thanksgiving and Christmas, too, because there's just so much stuff going on that interrupts our schedule. However, I found that after this last one, it was really painful to get back to it, so I think I'm going to have to be a stronger enforcer of not having that break.

iris0110
02-24-2014, 11:51 AM
We're year round here, if I break for more than 2 weeks my oldest forgets most of what he knows (he has memory issues). I have found that because we like to break for more unconventional holidays (we take a long break for Halloween for example and change things up for Lunar New Year) plus we have to take breaks for lots of therapy and doctor appts that it just works better to take many breaks through out the year rather than a long 3 month break in the summer. Plus we live in TX, it is hot and miserable in the summer, what's the fun in being off then? More fun to have breaks when it is nice and we can do things.

IHeartNerds
03-04-2014, 10:05 AM
I'll be HSing year round. 3 months on, 3 weeks off. When in public school I never let my kids get the summertime brain rot. There's always field trips, works sheets, experiments anyway so I just figure year round would be better.

jsaffold
03-04-2014, 10:41 AM
I can update my answer to this question now, beacuse I will have both of my kids at home!!..We will take the last 2 weeks of June off and the first 2 weeks of July off..
Then after that wedding/vacation we will be back at it.... I want to be "schooling" in as many nice weather months as possible!! This winter has me freaked out for next winter!! SO we can take breaks WHEN EVER WE WANT .LOL and now with DS being home ...aahhhhh freedom!!! we won't be tied down to his school schedule anymore [happy dance]

kohlby
03-06-2014, 12:55 PM
We do year round and have since the start. I can't image any other way! We also do more than my state's required 180 days. It builds in a buffer so I don't worry if we don't do a lot and I don't worry if life happens and we end up with less than our norm. I find my kids behave better if they have schoolwork. I'M the one who needs a break every so often! Also, we try to do a lot of child-led and they have plenty of time to play every day, so continuing on isn't a big deal. They retain more this way. And if they want to play with a neighborhood kid, they can easily plan that around their work. Summers are dreadfully hot though, so it's not like they want to be outside that much in the summer anyway. My eldest, who will be 11, is doing two weeks of overnight camp this year - one in June and one in July, so he'll have those two weeks off. I'll likely throw in another week off sometime during the summer depending on when the two other kids do camps. (One is only 5, so I don't do anything officially yet. But the 8 year old may decide to do camp so I'd want that week off too).

EarthyLady
03-30-2014, 02:36 PM
We'll be doing year round as well. We figured there is no reason to stop and being in the heat of TX, outside time in the summer isn't always the best. Lil E is still not at Kindergarten level yet, so we figure on the build up to this Autumn, will be really helpful for her.

panama10
04-10-2014, 09:43 PM
I think we are going to try to do year round schooling. If we have too many days off, the kids fall of the wagon (as does the teacher, my husband). I'm thinking math we will continue at a more relaxed pace and do science. It is so hot here in summer, that some days you can't even go outside! that way we can take more time off when the weather cools off and we can actually enjoy the outdoors.

ImReallyThisCrazy
04-11-2014, 11:58 AM
We are doing about 4 days a week, and plan to continue through the summer. I am still a newbie, so still pondering curriculum ideas, how to do things, so I am still working on getting schedules together, organized, etc. We need the summer! My children, 1 ds ADHD, appreciate being able to have breaks, but also have the ability to retain what they are learning and carry it to the next topic covered. They are actually learning this way, something I haven't seen in years! So are you crazy, NO! According to the responses, it looks like most of us do year round.

I plan to do more fun learning, outdoors, and things like that, but that's primarily because we have been cooped up in the house all winter.

Soulhammer
04-11-2014, 06:43 PM
We do year-round bc we are a two-earner family that can't squeeze all of our formal schooling into a nine-month calendar. We do two- or three-week breaks for vacations and during heavy times at work. Once we hit the required 180 days, we do more relaxed and project- oriented work plus math. It has worked fairly well for us and I've managed to avoid burn-out and summer brain drain.

aspiecat
04-11-2014, 08:25 PM
We keep to the Monday - Friday thing, but we have never stopped for holidays. And living in a place about two hours' drive from anything a little bit different (there are only so many nature hikes one can take), we tend to prefer to fill in time.

When it's an obvious holiday, such as Xmas, and the extended family start to get antsy about DS "not having Christmas like a normal child" :rolleyes: so we tend to do the Xmas thing for the week between that and New Year's.

justabout
04-11-2014, 09:03 PM
"I find my kids behave better if they have schoolwork."

This is what I find with mine, so we will do stuff this autumn break coming (in southern hemisphere)

espbecomingmom
04-12-2014, 08:37 AM
Though I'm just starting out, I intend to HS year round. I don't see much value for my kids academically (or my sanity) in having several months off in the summer. My husband works a varied schedule throughout the year, so I'd prefer to go through the summer and take breaks when he is off or has a lighter schedule so we can maximize family time and travel. Since we live across the country from our extended family, this will also mean I can take off an extended period at the holidays and head home if I choose without feeling the need to 'catch up' on school work. We're just beginning with G1 this summer, and my plan is to start our HS year at the end of june.

ElizabethK
04-12-2014, 10:11 AM
We plan on schooling year round. I've never been a fan of summer breaks in the school system, kids lose a lot of information. We will take breaks for holidays, of course, and are already planning a fall vacation, but our vacations are pretty educational so we will take our school on the road with us.

BASHHomeschool
04-14-2014, 04:40 PM
We homeschool year round and unlike some, we ramp it up in the summer. We do more formal, more intense indoor studies during the summer. We live in San Antonio and it gets hot. When the public school kids are in school we take advantage f museums, parks, etc and no lines or waiting. When all the public school kids are out and about in the summer we become hermits and get cracking on the books.

ElizabethK
04-14-2014, 06:39 PM
We homeschool year round and unlike some, we ramp it up in the summer. We do more formal, more intense indoor studies during the summer. We live in San Antonio and it gets hot. When the public school kids are in school we take advantage f museums, parks, etc and no lines or waiting. When all the public school kids are out and about in the summer we become hermits and get cracking on the books.

Great suggestion! We are also in Texas and will be hiding and homeschooling during the summer as well!

RTB
04-16-2014, 04:58 PM
We go year around too (and end up doing more than 180 days). It allows me function as a relaxed homeschooler in the day-to-day of life.

It works better for the kids too, because our breaks are short. Even though they complain about doing school, they also complain when not doing school (boredom). There are less sibling fights, and brain rot when we do something and breaks don't stretch on for more than a few weeks.

freerangedad
04-16-2014, 05:56 PM
Thank you for posting, all of you year rounders. I am going to show this to DD so she'll resent the amount we do a little less. :_laugh: We will take the afternoons off in the Summertime.

rosewolf
04-16-2014, 06:08 PM
This is our first year homeschooling, but I do plan to continue into the summer. It will be a lighter load, with lots more hands-on science and a shift to Life of Fred for math. She loves history, so we'll be exploring more into the area she's the most interested in right now, which is Ancient Egypt.

Snoopygirl25
04-16-2014, 10:09 PM
We teach all year around. It's so hard to keep my 7 year old in a schedule I like to keep going. I'll declare pool time, go to the beach. Math, piano & gymnastic we keep doing for sure. We have piano every two weeks instead of once a week.

shell12970
04-17-2014, 12:43 AM
Going year round is easier if your kids never went to school. All HS families that we know who have homescooled from day one go year round without any issue, us included. But those whose kids have been in school start out wanting the summer break. As a former teacher I can say the first two months of every year is devoted to relearning what was last over sb.

fastweedpuller
04-17-2014, 08:56 AM
Yup, year-round, but with unit studies, not formal studies...and like freerangedad mostly in the mornings only. Oh and math is year-round because somehow math facts get forgotten!

WindSong
04-17-2014, 09:10 AM
Going year round is easier if your kids never went to school.
Yeah, this is us. My kids were in ps for several years before we homeschooled. They both resisted continuing school in the summer, even if it meant more breaks during the year. To them summer will always be summer vacation.

Starkspack
04-27-2014, 07:48 AM
We are fairly new to HSing, but we've always gone year-round. We just take breaks as travel or the mood suits us. DD gets VERY excited if I just "call it a day" on schoolwork for no apparent reason. It's like a gift to her. :) We've not done a break longer than 1-2 weeks, and if I recall, the two weeks was at the holidays and we did a small amount of work - it was more of a cutting back situation than an actual break.

Now we sort of do 6-10 weeks on, a week off, and so on. This is due to traveling (the weeks off), so it just works out how it works out. When DD's enthusiasm is waning, I remind her we only have (for example) three weeks until a week off, and she turns on the juice. I sincerely hope she'll always be this easy to deal with. :)

my3legacies
06-09-2014, 05:45 PM
We do a 6-7 week on, 1-2 weeks off schedule, with 5 weeks off for summer. This works best for us because just when we are getting burnt out, we get a vacation. And they get a long enough summer break to play and have fun, but not long enough to totally forget everything they learned the previous year. In the end, they do school for about the same amount of time as their PS friends (180 days, give or take 5 days), and 6 hours a day (including lunch & one break during the day). They are going into 8th and 10th grades this year.

pdpele
06-10-2014, 10:10 AM
We are going year round. My part-time work schedule was more intense in the fall semester (Sept - Dec), so I kinda think/plan for a "grade year" as Jan - Dec, with Sep - Dec as the most relaxed time. Part of me just likes to buck the usual system, too. Summer here is hot as #%!*, so we might as well spend some time on 'school' while hibernating indoors all afternoon (when not at the pool or escaped to the mountain for a day hike and cooler temps).

This year I plan to finish up some material by beginning of Dec and break until after the holidays (we'll probably keep up a short daily reading practice, though, 'cause slow and steady seems to be winning the race on that!).

Now that I am comfortable with the plan to HS DS for the long haul, he is truly all over the map on 'grade levels' and I can see spending less and less time worrying about calendars/grade levels and more time simply planning school activities to meet goals and work with the rest of life. But it is hard to shake so many years of the school mindset!

Jeni
06-10-2014, 11:14 AM
We go year round. We take off a lot of time during Spring and Fall when the weather is beautiful and allergy season is worst.

Maela
06-11-2014, 08:27 PM
We've only just started our third year, so I'm still relatively new at this. But I'm really enjoying a year round schedule. It's not even a schedule really. We just do a little work every day (plus living our regular life which is full of educational stuff in itself) that we have time. Sometimes that's three days a week, sometimes it's seven. But I feel like if we just "do school" as many days a week as we can, then we can have a small daily workload and take days off guilt-free.

LadyMondegreen
06-12-2014, 07:54 PM
We started out as unschoolers, and have naturally evolved into year-round homeschoolers. We take breaks whenever they work. I also don't get hung up about everyone doing school on the same days. Between the competing schedules of online classes, dual-enrollment, recent surgeries, therapies, travel baseball, ballet, summer camps, etc., there are plenty of days and weeks that some of the kids are doing schoolwork while others aren't.

Homeschooling Librarian
06-20-2014, 02:39 AM
We're starting out year round. Last week was the last week of school for my older son, M1, we took this week off, and we start next week. I've always liked the idea of year-round school, though even before I had kids.

My plan thus far is to cut the year up into quarters, and have ten weeks of academic stuff, one week of down time, and two weeks in reserve for sick days, holidays, travel, or projects. M1 is 6, and needs a bit of structure to keep on task, and a consistent schedule to maintain his equilibrium.

gorjess99
06-26-2014, 12:40 PM
Ack! We are new to HSing this year. I had planned to continue through the summer, but things that should take about an hour are taking 3-4!!! We took two weeks off before we started our "light" homeschooling for the summer, and I'm super frustrated with how things are going. I don't want to stop, but I don't want to continue like this. There have been tears almost every day this week.

dbsam
06-26-2014, 02:54 PM
Ack! We are new to HSing this year. I had planned to continue through the summer, but things that should take about an hour are taking 3-4!!! We took two weeks off before we started our "light" homeschooling for the summer, and I'm super frustrated with how things are going. I don't want to stop, but I don't want to continue like this. There have been tears almost every day this week.

I feel your frustration.
We started HS'ing in the fall and had a similar experience. But, it improved quite a bit after January. We HS'd lightly all school year and I intended to continue throughout the summer. Unfortunately, we've done little this summer and I am a bit concerned that the frustration, crying, etc. will start up again. I've explained to the kids this year we will need to do more than we did last year. They seem fine with the idea; but they might not be alright actually doing the work.

kadylaha
06-26-2014, 06:24 PM
Yep. We school year round. We do three months on, followed by 1 month off... BUT during vacations, we do a once-per-week single sheet Review on his math and grammar skills. It takes him 20 minutes a week, and it keeps him sharp, so we don't have to burn a lot of time reviewing when school starts up again for real.