10 Positives of Starting Homeschool in July

My two little ones – starting Pre-K 4 and First Grade!

I hadn’t really planned to start our 2012-2013 school year Monday. However, we usually do start the last full week of July. Many things helped me make a last minute decision to start this week. Starting an Olympics unit study, new curriculum in the mail, excited children.

But I also got the expected, ‘whoa, I’m not ready!” from several friends. And that’s surely ok. Everyone has a different schedule and needs to time things best for themselves and their family.

Our annual school photo habit! So thankful I’ve taken a photo most every year since 2001!

10 Great Things About a Slow Start in July

So, today’s weekly wrap collage post is about the positives of starting in July…

From L to R – Our age-range from preschool to high school: First Grader, 9th grader, 8th grader, 5th grader and Pre-K 4

1. We’ve had a break since May.

Following the week of the Drama Troupe performance. We’re having a glorious summer! Been to the beach, been to the pool, visited family, enjoyed VBS, youth camp and day camp.

2. It’s hot, mosquitoes are biting. Meanwhile we’re inside writing (it rhymed).

3. We start slowly with just three things.

Our Before 8:45 morning routine, math – wearing your swimsuit –  and then a trip to the pool! (Details in last week’s Return of the Routine).

4. We still have fun and get stuff done.

Lil’ Buddy has learned to swim – all that practice by going to the pool almost every day.

5. We take off some time here and there in the fall whenever we feel like it.

We have several birthdays in the fall, so we enjoy Destination Birthdays.

6. We also shift our learning in December.

We focus on advent and have multiple performances the children participate in: drama troupe, choir, piano. Take December Off.

7. Starting early gives us a chance to succeed before we add in all the extracurricular.

Plus really dig deep into summer nature study like our latest, The Marvel of the Butterfly Cycle. (Above: a beetle on the backyard slide, bumblebee in the althea, feeding our friend’s goats and chickens, taking care of caterpillars)

8. When the new curricula arrives in the mail, we can match the excitement and go ahead and enjoy it.

Slowly working up to the 10 Things of our Regular Homeschool Schedule.

9. We can slowly build up, adding in Tapestry of Grace and science.

(This gives me a little more time to plan).

10. We can enjoy an Olympics unit study! (plus study about some local elections next week).

Reading Olympic-themed books (one Middle Girl is very taken with Wilma Rudolph), making Olympic rings and torches. Most of these projects we found in our Olympics Unit Study by Amanda Bennett, on my Olympic Pinterest board or Curriculum Choice‘s.

It’s been a good, slow and steady start to our 11th year of homeschool! It wasn’t that long ago these two were the two in the top photo!

I shared all of our school photos from 2001 to 2010 in Back to School Memories. “A picture taken at about the same time every year. Whatever sort of school your child attends. Preserving the dimple of a baby hand…

The short hairstyle of that year…

The not-quite-grown-into outfit of a sibling…

A reluctant younger brother, not wanting to pose…

Little, bare feet.

They are all getting way too tall. 9th grader, 8th grader, 5th grader, 1st grader and Pre-K 4. Here they are posing before our morning trip to the neighborhood pool – right after math.

Yes, sometimes it’s sheer torture to wrangle children outside to hold a sign. Even so, I’m glad I read about this first day of school idea in Family Fun magazine years ago. I guess it didn’t really sink in then just how quickly the years would pass.”

Many thanks to our Friday hostesses!

Would you like to see our Hodgepodge Curricula 2012-13 and take a tour of our IKEA and Chalkboard Homeschool Room?

I invite you to subscribe to Hodgepodge so you won’t miss a homeschool post. Be sure to check out all the student photos via the Not-Back-to-School Blog Hop at iHomeschool Network.

How about you? Have you started school? Will you baby step your way?


  1. 1


    I love the very last picture, Tricia! What precious memories you are preserving for your children.

    Yay London 2012 — we start our Olympic study next week!!

  2. 2


    I love the collage of the kids for the first day of school: the not-perfect poses capture real life so well! I think a slow beginning to school is a great idea. Who can argue with doing math in your swimsuit? A wonderful homeschool life.

  3. 3


    My goodness that last photo is sweet! 😀

    Nothing wrong with starting in July if it works for you! We’ll be starting September 4th. Maine doesn’t have many months of warm weather and we like to enjoy them as long as possible. LOL Those winter months sneak right up on us come October? November? and we start spending more and more time inside until March? April? Works for us! LOL But you have some great points for starting in July!

  4. 6


    Thank you friends! I agree – the beauty of homeschooling is that you can create your own schedule. Make it just for your home, tweak it, tailor it and pick it up in the time that is best for you! And thank you for your sweet comments about the school photos.

    • 8


      Those sweet little desks are ones we started homeschooling with in 2001. They were a gift from Nana. She got them through Pottery Barn Kids. I looked recently because someone else asked and they are no longer selling them :( You might be able to get some through eBay?

  5. 9


    I love the pictures! I like to start back slowly also. But we are waiting another week. We had school for the month of June, just some easy and fun unit study stuff. So, we’ve had some time off now and will be ready to start back next week. :-)

  6. 10


    I love this list! We started on July 16th, which is about the time we start school every year. But every year I get so many shocked reactions from my non-homeschooling friends. Thanks for validating my choice! I’m getting weary trying to explain myself!

  7. 14


    We love to pose in the same place for each year’s first day pic too! We have always used the same tree, but are getting ready to cut it down in a few weeks so we chose another spot! The kids were kind ofsad that the first day tree has to go but it is almost dead! GREAT Pics!

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