Monday, August 25, 2008



"Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil."

~Ephesians 5:15-16

I receive a lot of questions about how to begin to plan for the homeschooling year. 

As homeschool moms we are bombarded with resources and suggestions and sometimes in the midst of too much information we still fear we will have "holes" and things we will miss! 

The start of the new year is an important time to corral our thoughts.  I'm going to share what helps me. 


First ask yourself-   What are your goals this year? Each year I ask my husband what he would like to see in the new year. He is most keenly aware of my strengths and weaknesses, so he is the perfect person to critique our previous year and give me direction.

I will often create a mission statement to summarize our goals. We will pray together, then I am off to apply what we have discussed. This is the time to create our Proposed Course of Study (PCS).


Next, fill out a Proposed Course of Study.  This is the most helpful tool I use each year.  

It helps to make sure everything will be covered and transitions you to the next step- making a schedule that works for you.   

The Proposed Course of Study is basically a worksheet you can use to list all of the disciplines we you are required to cover on one side, and all the resources you will be using to accomplish those goals on the right.

That does not mean that all of the disciplines listed will need to be covered each and every day. In fact, some will be covered once a week- or even once every other week. In some cases a read aloud resource may cover Social Sciences which would include history, geography, man's relation to his natural environment and so on. But this is your plan for what materials you will want to use for each discipline.

One year a mom who was new to homeschooling (who I hadn't even met before!) found me at our local homeschool conference with her Proposed Course of Study printed out from our blog and walked up to ask me, "Now what!"  I loved it.   

You will want to include your Proposed Course of Study in your child's cumulative file (which I keep in an extra large binder for each child). Although I know you are being faithful in instructing your children, it is also wise for us to take the little time it takes to document that we are being faithful. Creating a cumulative file will be something we discuss as well.

Grade 6

Grade 4

Grade 2

Blank Proposed Course of Study Form
Read this document on Scribd: Proposed Course of Study BLANK 2008-2009

Blessings to you!



If you have questions regarding the courses that are required, HSLDA is a wonderful resource. Just click on your state and they will provide an outline for you.


  1. What a timely post! I will soak in all of your wisdom and experience...

    A few nights ago I was online looking for resources for our "homeschool preschool" and my husband looked at me and said "what are your goals?" And I know what I need to cover, but to have my goals for our homeschool year outlined and clear would be a HUGE help to organizing our resources and planning our year:)So I got to work!!!

    I also wanted to say what a BLESSING to have a sister so nearby and like-minded that you can PLAN your schooling with her!!

  2. I'm looking forward to seeing all your useful forms... especially the cumulative file(is that spelled right... we're only in Kindergarten?). This was a nice, bite-sized start on the scheduling. Thanks for not making it overwhelming. I must agree with "3 for me", that is handy to have a like-minded sister so close... when are you moving to the mountains?

  3. Hi Kelly and Erin!

    You are right. I am super blessed. And wait till you see Liz's Proposed Course of Study all typed up~ and you will be blessed too! : )

    How about you all moving out here instead dear Erin? At least part time~ your room is always ready!

    My dear BIL (that stands of course for Brilliant In Law) is going to give us some HTML help on this one. Right, Sven? : )

    Yes, Erin. Cumulative files. Very good to start early! : )

    Blessings to you!