Well, schoolwork and exams are finished (I'm planning to wrap up our Year 2 studies and share on our exams another day!) and we are officially on break! We'll start up again in July, most likely, depending on how we've adapted to having a newborn in the house once again. That gives us about two months off.
But we won't be entirely off; I see a lot of value in keeping a lightened summer school routine for us, as we did last year. My plan has always been to school year-round for some subjects and on a more traditional schedule for others.
I like to keep skill-based subjects going a few times a week, not necessarily looking toward getting ahead but just focusing on keeping memory and skills fresh and keeping traction in areas we have progress in. For us, that means math, penmanship, Italian, memory work, and piano. But unlike during the school year, I aim to hit those "daily" items just three times a week (we aim for four during the school year), taking a bit over an hour:
Math - 25 minutes
Penmanship (printing and cursive) - 10 minutes
Italian - 15 minutes
Memory work - 10 minutes
Piano - 20 minutes
I also have casual plans for some of our other subjects, like...
:: time listening to our composer selections from the previous year
:: lots of read-alouds and audiobooks
:: a monster stack of books to stock my big kids' shelf, who will have more free (reading) time on their hands and are always happy to have something new to read
:: our weekly nature study outing and journal entry
:: a few nature projects: raising butterflies, monitoring our (tiny) garden, working on learning the calls of our local birds, building our wildflower collection
:: revamped chore routines as we re-calibrate life with a new little one in our home
:: a read through of Beatrix Potter's collection (I did this a few years ago with my two oldest but the littles have only read a few favorites--time to remedy that!)
And then my kids have their own projects in mind:
:: some beginning cooking lessons (my girls' request)
:: lots of hours out back, particularly in the cool mornings (my boys' request)
:: more time for handicrafts, drawing, and piano (my oldest daughter's request)
:: continuing our simple reading lessons (my soon-to-be-kindergartener's request)
:: more chess with Daddy (my big kids' request)
...and I'm hoping to have a bit more time to read picture books while snuggling on the sofa with my littles. :)
I'm happy to say that this Charlotte Mason approach to education has done a wonderful job so far at educating my children's sensibilities: when I ask what they would like to do with the time that stretches before them over the next couple months, I get heart-pleasing answers that I am happy to help satisfy!
So what do you have planned for summer? Do you keep up with school year-round, or do you love a complete summer break?