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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Five subjects a day? Really?

Many school curricula use a model of five or six “classes” taught throughout the day, broken up into even chunks, and combined with lunch and breaks. This makes planning the movement of large numbers of children possible.

But if you didn’t have a school structure - if you were instead dedicated to each student’s learning - how many subjects would you teach?

The answer is probably, “It depends on the day, student, and subject. Maybe one. Or one hundred. Or zero.”

Having said that, a default broad schedule makes sense for some who crave a bit of order. Probably the most basic is the best: have one morning subject and one afternoon subject.

2 comments:

  1. I needed this post today. I am a former teacher, current homeschooling mother. I am learning to rethink the "school schedule" mentality of moving from subject to subject rather than letting my child's wants and desires move us from subject to subject. Naturally she tends to pick one thing a day to dedicate most of her energy towards, whether it is art, reading or science. I have to let go and allow her to explore realizing the other learning areas will still be there when we come around to them.

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  2. My unschooled daughter (8) has natural phases of intense interest and learning about particular things. This is a great system if you can allow it to happen as the quality of learning is very rich - she retains so much info as she's taking it in while alert and open. Over the last few days it's just been cetaceans, a subject we've revisited several times. And last week it was fairly complicated mathematics - just out of the blue. Who knows what's next? Keeps things interesting for our whole family.

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