New School Year, New State, New Regulations.

I know it’s early, but we usually homeschool during the hot summer months to allow us to take more time off during the holidays and spring.  But here’s the catch.  We’ve moved -which is why the lesson plans stopped being posted in February.  We’ve moved from a state that had fairly lax rules and an area that was pretty friendly to homeschoolers, to a state that is pretty strict and an area that is anything but friendly to homeschoolers.

By: Chris

In Maryland, you have to submit to portfolio reviews, which are done by the school board.  In the county we live, the board is notorious for being hard on homeschoolers. As such, we’ve opted for the Umbrella School option.  Thankfully I found an umbrella school that will allow us to use whatever curriculum we want. Another thing about Maryland, is that we have to show proof of progress in not just Math & Language – which is all that was required to show progress in Virginia – but also in Science, History, Music, & Art.  I’ll be honest, we were doing Language, Math, & History with the younger two, threw in science as well for the oldest, & unschooling everything else.  Now that I need something more concrete to prove the work *is* being done, I’ve got to add something with a bit more structure in each subject.

Then there’s the oldest.  He’s doing high school level work this year, despite being an 8th grader.  In Virginia, I was letting him take the CAT (California Achievement Test) for his grade level according to the state, so that if we hit a rough patch, we’d have room to slow down & really dig in.  But in Maryland, you only get to claim high school credit for 3 courses, and he’s taking 4 high school courses – Math, Science, History, and Language.  So, it makes more sense to promote him to 9th grade and make him officially in high school.

So this year, everyone will be using Math-U-See, and I’m counting this summer’s swimming lessons & pool time as PE for everyone.  The younger two are using Easy Grammar, and BJU’s American Heritage Studies.  They’ve decided on Apologia’s Land Animals for their science, and we will be using SQUILT for Music Appreciation.  Besides Math-U-See’s Algebra 1, the oldest will be using Switched On Schoolhouse for Grammar, History, and Bible.  For science he will be using Apologia’s Physical Science, Typingweb.com for typing, and for art, we’ll be using a combination of sources found online, primarily Khan Academy & TICE 1010.

So… Aprendemos Academy officially starts it’s 2014-2015 school year tomorrow morning.  I am so not ready for this.