After a bit of a think I have come up with this:-
This is DD's sheet, but they each have one with slightly different headings - except Abbie, who has chosen to write her own timetable (without times). Phoebe is also unsure how she'll get on with this system, but she's giving it a trial run for a month and then she'll decide. In reality, it's a trial run for all of us, but I think it'll work so long as all the children are honest ;-)
The idea is that they are each entirely in control of what learning they do, how much time they spend and when they do it. It's centred around 10 minute slots and the only requirement is that there is SOMETHING written in every coloured box by Saturday bedtime. Although there is still a requirement for them to do a certain amount of learning each week I am chilling out about what that learning looks like. Math could be done in a workbook, on Conquer Maths, on a app, or on a learning website (e.g. Skoolbo, or Sumdog). They do however much they choose to do and record how much they did, and what they did by writing in the boxes. If they did 20 minutes of Skoolbo they'd just write Skoolbo in the 10 min box and a ditto in the 20 min box.
General Interest will be filled in with things we do in groups together ~ like cookery and art.
'English' I have split up a bit, so they can record what kind of learning they have done. This is because some of the workbooks they have contain various types of tasks and it's often difficult for me to make sure they are getting a balance. This way I will be able to see at a glance where any gaps are forming and address them ~ although not necessarily with workbooks ;-). I am also hoping to do a lot more literature based work with the younger ones this year ~ bouncing off the back of poetry and prose. We begun using FIAR a little last year, and it was enjoyed by all three younger boys, so I am hoping to inject more of that into our learning this year.
Also, I am hoping to make plenty of use of our Spielgaben set ~ especially with the youngest two boys.
All this could add up to very busy days for me - jumping from one activity to another as and when the children need my attention. I know am not too great at that in reality, which is how we ended up with a structure in the first place I guess. I do better knowing what's coming next and working with low-energy activities. I was a workbooks kind of child myself. I simply loved doing pages of little exercises. But imho home-education is about an education that fits the child (and as much as possible the family), and so this year I am going to have to make a big effort to make learning work more relaxed, happy and stimulating for my younger boys, whilst releasing my older children to take more charge of their own learning. I would really like to gradually phase out even this much structure and fall into a much more chilled educational style. I think it might be good for us all - because don't have the energy for so much nagging any more! I know my younger boys are bright, and intelligent. I am not concerned at all about their ability to learn, but I am a tad concerned about their desire to do so. Trusting the process is definitely not my strong point!! Maybe I will get there - I hope so.
So, today the stop watches arrived (so they can know how long they've been at work on each activity, and help keep things honest) and Monday will be our first day of this new way ~ I'll let you all know how it goes at the end of the week!