As I pondered our homeschool journey, I thought a lot about what I wanted to accomplish. Not just what I want to accomplish this year, but what do I want my boys to learn that will take them through their lives. There are quite a few practical skills I'd like them to work on. I am a firm believer that through the practical we can also hone our character. To learn a new skill takes patience and perseverance. Working together on a project takes understanding and kindness. Completing a mundane task over and over requires us to put aside our own wants and focus on the needs of those around us.
We are going to use The Young Man's Handybook this year to focus in on some new skills and practice some old ones. Here are my notes for each chapter. I have included a saint for each chapter to keep us focused on how these topics and skills are related to the path that Christ has set for each of us. I'll have the boys read about the saint in one of the books we already own or search the internet. They will write or type a narration and draw a picture or decorate the page in some manner befitting the saint. I've also given quite a few assignments using PowerPoint or Microsoft Publisher. My boys enjoy using the computer and are often more willing to learn by creating in this manner.
In the KitchenI'm not sure we'll cover all the chapters this year. My thought is to spend about one month per chapter. Some chapters are more intense than others and so we may spend two months on some chapters and only two weeks on others. As with all my planning, I need to see the curriculum in action to see how well it will go and how we need to tweak it to fit our needs.
- Saint Pascaul - notebook page
- retype kitchen rules (page 3) using either PowerPoint or Publisher
- Sew your own apron (this isn't in the book but seems practical to me)
- Read and discuss pgs 3-10
- Pick one recipe to cook for the family. Follow the rules for the kitchen and remember to clean up after yourself
- Prepare and serve an entire meal for Dad and Mom (that means cleaning up, too)
The Young Gentleman
- Saint Maximilian Kolbe - notebook page
- PowerPoint presentation of pgs 65-68 (2 pages for each boy)
- Shop for a tie.
- Learn to tie the tie.
- Get all dressed up for a dinner (either out if the budget allows or at a family meal). Use all the manners you learned about in this chapter.
First Aid and Safety
- Saint Damian of Molokai - notebook page
- Make a first aid booklet using information in chapter
- Make a first aid kid for the house and car.
The Young Handyman
- Saint John Bosco - notebook page
- Read about laundry and begin having a family laundry day. A task to do together, properly.
- Set up an outdoor and (if possible) an indoor laundry line.
- Sew a button
- inspect the house for maintenance issues. Make a list and prioritize the maintenance needs.
- Read pages and follow directions for plumbing, light bulbs, auto and tidying.
Let's go to the Woodshed
- Saint Joseph - notebook page
- Create a PowerPoint or publisher page about caring for your tools.
- practice whittling
- make a toolbox
- make a bird house
- make a paddle boat
The Country Boy
- Saint Joseph of Cupertino - notebook page
- Read the chapter
- practice knot tying
- Go camping, hiking and fishing
- refer to section on cooking on a campfire for meal planning
Outgrowing the Piggy Bank
- Saint Thomas Becket - notebook page
- Read chapter
- Take a look at personal and family finances.
- Think about how to earn money over the summer
- Talk about saving vs. spending and how to be a cheerful giver.
I am planning on using this curriculum once per week on Friday. Some chapters may require two days. Again, I have to actually do it to see how it will work. Maybe I'll give some homework that will spill into Saturday.