Child, wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend

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I love the Lord as much as a broken person can; love and loved by my husband; blessed by 5 amazing little people who have helped me to learn much about me; grateful to serve even more as God gives them to me; blessed every day to be a home school teacher; college student; I hope to change the world by loving as many people as possible, because there is nothing greater than loving another.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

TOG and Its Heavy Planning Rap

I just wanted to say that TOG gets what I consider a "bad rap" sometimes b/c some people find it's a giant planning monster. I wanted to offer some encouragement and simplify that process a bit. I'll make this sound easy, b/c I honestly think it is.

1. Choose books from list. Since there are so many subject areas in TOG, go to that area and choose the book. I spent about 1 hour choosing books in 4-levels for 2 Units.  I follow the SL "book basket" by often getting the other books (I didn't choose as spines) and having them lying around for personal enrichment.

2. Decide your daily schedule. I.e. Monday - vocab, reading; Tuesday - mapwork, reading; Wednesday questions, start get the point. You have to design what days to do what, and you may try a few things before you find your comfy groove, but since we all handle when we teach a variety of subjects M-F, we are totally capable of this step too.

3. Plug in materials, all provided by TOG, into your daily schedule (#2) This takes as much time as counting book pages and dividing them up, printing your copies, and having them ready for your dc in whatever way ya'll school. The's all there for you.

The most time consuming, extensive portion of the program is Teacher's Notes, which does take time to read. Whether or not you study them, take notes, etc. is up to you, but if you have dc in Grammar Stage, this will just be for your own education. If you have older dc, then you'll need to do this for teaching. It takes less time than reading all of their materials, though, and the benefit is growth as a person and as an instructor.  The thing here is that you're not planning anything b/c everything is laid out for you. You're preparing by reading.

Many people don't realize that TOG promotes self-planning for D and R you're kinda skipping step 3 before you know it b/c the dc are doing that part!

All that to say, when you first look at the girth of's intimidating...but once you pass the TOG Fog, it's a breeze, and I've never felt saddled down by daily plans that don't match my family, nor crazy b/c I have to figure out every little details. The little details are provided, I just decide how I want to use them, or not

I hope this helps or encourages someone who might have been intimidated to give it a try. It is a fabulous program and has brought the joys of history to my family in ways I didn't even find possible.


borgerfam said...

I just tried to leave a comment- I am not sure if it worked- so I will just leave this again.
First: so many times, I have wanted to leave a comment- as many post have helped me! (like the Latin post)
Second: I am very overwhelmed every time I look at TOG! I chose SL Core 6 for my fifth grade son- as we really begin the history cycle this year.
Can you, by chance, explain the differences between SL and TOG?
Why is TOG "better"? (if you know)

Thanks for this blog-
it is really benefitting me!! :)

Tina said...

Thank you for sharing how my blog has blessed you. It's encouraging to know I'm helping others how so many helped me over the years. :)

Here is a great thread from the Well Trained Mind Forums that does a super job of comparing TOG and SL.

I'm not sure if it will link or not, so you may have to copy, cut, paste.

Ruby, accepted in the Beloved... said...

Hi Tina!
I found you through TWTM. I am just beginning with TOG this fall and I'm so excited! My sis will also be using it, & we'll be doing our unit celebrations together. Thanks for this helps me to be less anxious about how to implement all of this. I do have a more specific question, though: Do you have any posts on how you set up the notebooks for your children? If not, would you care to share how you do that? I could use some good ideas!

Tina said...

Ruby, how wonderful to share the Unit Celebrations with your sister. We enjoy them with close friends and it's a blast.

Our notebooks are pretty easy. Since I think of each portion of TOG via chronological order, we simply add the the back of a 3-ring binder. The only separate section I keep is maps, so we can quickly refer to them, instead of digging through all our papers. I do print 2 copies of writing assignments, one for TOG and the other for their Language Arts notebook, which has a writing section. Otherwise, I like to be able to look back through the notebooks for review and enjoy them being presented like a book, glancing over each period of time with many interesting parts. Easy -- is good ;)


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