View Full Version : Electives?

03-17-2013, 03:16 PM
I am wondering how to include electives in homeschool.

My questions are...

Should I do a different elective every day? For example, Monday's are Spanish, Tuesday is art and so forth.

Or should I have one or two electives every day and then switch electives mid year?

In my area, elementary schools do a different elective everyday and middle schools do one/two electives every semester.

Are there rules and regulations for electives?

My son is entering the 6th grade.


03-17-2013, 03:23 PM
Its whatever you want it to be. My son is in 7th and these are his non-core classes:

Spanish - daily, we use a simple interactive DVD and its companion auto CD in the car. We also try to work conversational Spanish in when possible.

Fencing and Golf - offered through our local Parks and Rec departments just for homeschoolers.

Music - lessons once a week, orchestra once a week, practice three of the other days.

In all these, they are just to learn something new. There are no tests or lesson plans.

03-17-2013, 03:33 PM
Ok thanks! I was hoping I could do different things each day. To me that seems much more fun and provides much more opportunity to learn something new.

Guess I had better brush up on my four years of high school Spanish! I knew it would come in handy one day!

Muchas gracias, I think... :)

03-17-2013, 03:46 PM
De nada!

We didn't set out to have a different thing each day - its just how the classes were offered. And, many times we end up doing Spanish in the car on the way. I was amazed at the variety of things offered through the local parks and rec. There also standup paddling, archery, and art classes galore within 15 minutes of our house.

I don't what part of NC you live in, but the towns we've lived in here all have homeschool specific offerings.

03-17-2013, 04:31 PM
btw, when i started homeschooling, my oldest was in 8th grade. i thought maybe doing 1 or 2 subjects a day in depth might be easier than doing a little bit of each. it turns out it wasnt - he has a short attention span and does better switching subjects every 20-30 minutes. so while its great to try things out - remember, you might have to change plans depending on how it works out

03-17-2013, 04:39 PM
Some states require that you cover electives, but a lot of us don't have huge plans for these things. My kids take piano this year, but previously we didn't do anything for music except listen to it. And we're not doing anything formal for art right now - we cover a bit alongside history and I strew fun art resources and we do the free National Gallery programs, but I'm not fussed about not having an official art time.

Basically, don't feel like you have to do some sort of formal program for electives. If you want to and it works, then great. But if you want to just catch as you can and let it happen, that's usually fine too.

03-17-2013, 04:52 PM
Texas does not have any requirements for electives or otherwise, but the college entrance requirements have them and foreign language and fine arts are requirements. I don't consider them electives at our house.

03-20-2013, 11:10 AM
My MSer is in online school, and his electives were selected, but they are definitely still required. He is doing art and French as his school electives, and he is also taking Arabic, but he doesn't get school credit for his Arabic studies. The Arabic also moves at a much slower pace, since we have to squeeze the lessons in around a full schedule. He only does 2 hours a week with a tutor, plus homework in between, and a reading lesson once a week.
He spends about 4-5 hours a week on French, and averages maybe 2 hours a week on art classes. His art classes are half art history (pegged to his history classes) and then half studio, usually demonstrating a technique related to the works in the art history lesson. His French is online, mapped on a calendar.
I don't really dictate when either of my students (dd is in grade 3 but is doing MS French with ds) do their work--or rather, I should say I don't dictate the order. I do require them to do schoolwork during "designated school time." Designated non-school time is usually afternoons, when we go to the beach or pool, or go for a bike ride. Evenings are also usually non-school time, but kids are welcome to read for Lit class or for fun, or to catch up or work ahead (as their peers would be doing homework in most cases anyway).
Both students are usually pretty enthusiastic about French. They have a lovely Arabic tutor and hate to disappoint her, so they do the work. And one student would do nothing but art if I let her. The other would happily do the studies without the studio.

03-20-2013, 12:11 PM
I think all of our electives take place outside of the house, so the schedule is whatever I can manage: piano, voice lessons, swimming lessons, gymnastics, taekwondo, French, art, drama/musical theatre, field trips, etc...

I don't really attempt to cover those things in-depth at home, other than providing art supplies, French resources and encouragement.

03-20-2013, 12:43 PM
We do only a few electives... everything is so freaking expensive. We do cello/vocal once a week + practice days, sketch class and french. I think you can do it however you want and whatever fits your schedule.

At one point we weren't doing any electives and all our free time was spent playing. :)