The design principal in permaculture was the first thing that drew me in. Everything in life can be designed to suit the needs of those involved and as an old time homeschooler that’s starting in with the first grandkids I’m wanting to design a homeschool plan more in tune with nature. The nature around us and the nature of children.
So, here’s our design for using The Permaculture Student by Matt Powers – I hope you can gather some fun and useful ideas and then design a process that works for those around you.
Now that we’ve finished up chapter 1, and when I say “finished” I really mean that we’ve scratched the surface of the concepts taught in chapter 1 while trying to get out and do each activity. That’s taken us about a month of working in the garden, group class time on Wednesday nights, watching videos and assorted other work. Our group is 3 to 78 so it might look a little different than yours.
Here’s our four starter families:
1-Two cute old people who are enjoying thinking differently about the garden they have and adding the layers to their just over an acre property.
2-Our family that has a great start on permaculture thanks to the years my mom invested in trees and mulch on our one acre.
3-The Pond family – they left the big city a few years back and now have a garden and ducks swimming in their pond!
4-The Soon to Be family – they close on their six acre property any week now and man do they have swales to work with! Already paddocked sections, out buildings and water run many, many places! We’re all very excited for them.
I’m working on a lesson plan that’s a little sketchy at the moment but we’ll adapt it as we go since the plan is to cycle around through the course repeatedly until one of us is ready for the official PDC! We’ll be taking many weeks to work through each chapter.
Here are a few items we’ve got going:
1-Having a family time on Wednesday night with a potluck from our abundance which at the moment sometimes means fried chicken from the drive through window because we’re just starting out 🙂
2-Have a weekly game, activity, coloring page and watch a video together or just part of one since our little guys have a short attention span as do I.
3-On Wednesday night we’re having about 20-30 minutes of kid focused time, then they go complete an activity.
4-The adults will have a similar topic from the “Introduction to Permaculture” text by Bill Mollison w/Reny Mia Slay as we learn more about permaculture.
5-We’ve set up a work day each month where we’ll got to each family’s property and help them knock out a labor intensive job.
6-We’ll have ongoing permaculture projects at our own homes each week. Like checking our soil samples.
As we cycle back around through the curriculum, we’re planning on adding some other fun science elements: Fall -Chemistry/Physics, Winter – Anatomy, Spring – Flying Creatures. We’ll be using resources that we already have in the Apologia Young Explorers Series. But this time when I use these textbooks I’ll have a much clearer application for each topic right in our yard!
It’s never to late to change up the design or begin a design of your own.