I’ve realised that just lately we have been slacking slightly and in my case, procrastinating. As someone who is usually very organised and cannot do without some sort of routine and structure I’ve found myself pondering over things the last few days. Sometimes things happen in life that throw you off course and then you struggle to get back on track, well this is where I’m at right about now.
I managed to kick myself into gear this weekend and have decided what is needed now that four out of five of my children are studying full-time. I have revised our routine and decided to implement Monthly Themes which involves all four kids learning at the same time, focusing on the same subject. I came across this idea on the 1+1+1=1 website under the title Calendar Connections.
The idea is to use a pocket chart calendar (which I’ve just ordered from Amazon) and choose a theme for the month. Our next unit study is going to be about the weather, so I have decided to hold off on this until the beginning of April, when, insha’Allah our pocket chart should have arrived by then.
On the Calendar Connection page you will find various themes, and for each theme there is a set of cards, averaging one card for each day of the month. And on each card is a subject relating to the monthly theme. So for example, in the weather theme you would find a card focusing on rain, a card focusing on thunder and lightening, a card focusing on snow, or hail, or fog and so on. The idea is that you place the cards, one in each pocket of the chart, and work through the subject day by day completing various activities based on that one subject.
I find this lightens the burden somewhat because I would only need to prepare resources such as worksheets, lapbook templates and art and craft activities a day at a time rather than trying to prepare the whole unit all in one go. I can also see the breakdown being a more effective method of learning since we would be focusing on one thing at a time.
I had already planned to do several unit studies for the year ahead including oceans and rainforests so I was happy to find sets of cards for these subjects available on the website. I’m also looking forward to preparing my own themes, including a theme in preparation for the month of Ramadhan, insha’Allah.
New structure and routine is something we all need from time to time to keep us buzzing. I feel inspired and much more enthusiastic about beginning our new study units.
I’m also starting to design an interactive daily calendar (more for the younger two) to get them focused and enthusiastic about the day ahead … it will include the day, date, season and weather plus a daily food to learn about (and taste), a country-of-the-day and an-animal-of-the-day. Also an Arabic/English word of the day and most importantly it will include an ayah (Qur’an verse) and Hadith (narration of the Prophet Muhammad [saas]) of the day.
I will share pictures and further details soon insha’Allah.