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My 15yo Daughter's Self-Directed Study Plan for Jan-May 2023

Teaching kids to become independent learners is one of the foundations of our homeschool philosophy. For my 15yo daughter Alina, this means that, in addition to our all-together schooling time, Alina is also pursuing her own studies independently. Here's a snapshot of Alina's study plan for the coming semester.




Alina's Spring 2023 Scholar Contract

Each semester, Alina and I agree on a Scholar Contract. The purpose of the Scholar Contract is to document Alina's learning goals, the changes to her overall list of responsibilities, and her plan for achieving her self-directed Scholar goals.


This semester, Alina is planning to do three hours of Scholar Time daily Mon-Fri. This is in addition to our morning SmithSchool block, which includes some math, history, and science throughout the week.


Below is Alina's Scholar Contract for Jan-May 2023. Since Alina aspires to be an author, she has chosen to dedicate more of her weekly Scholar time to writing this semester. There is more about how to create a Scholar Contract in Leadership Education: The Phases of Learning.



Alina's Spring 2023 Book List

Alina developed her own curriculum of books to read for the coming semester (with my guidance). As recommended in Hero Education: A Scholar Phase Guidebook, Alina works on a list of 10 books at a time. Several of the books Alina has chosen for this semester are going to be book club books for a 3 Generations Book Club with Alina, myself, and my mom. 😀

  1. Wild Swans* by Jung Chang (with Mentoring in the Classics content)

  2. Hunger Games* by Suzanne Collins (with Mentoring in the Classics content)

  3. Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society* by Mary Ann Shaffer (with Mentoring in the Classics content)

  4. Closing of the American Mind* by Allan Bloom (with Mentoring in the Classics content)

  5. Kiss My Math by Danica McKellar

  6. Declaration of Independence (with Mentoring in the Classics content)

  7. The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson

  8. A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson

  9. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

  10. Amy Tan's MasterClass on Fiction, Memory, and Imagination (not a book, but important for Alina since she aspires to be a writer 😀)

*Denotes books which will be discussed in the 3 Generations Book Club


Back-up/Bonus Books, in case there are books on the above list that are just not working for Alina:



Alina's Reading Schedule (Rough Outline)

Month-to-Month

  • January (2nd half) - Wild Swans

  • February - Closing of the American Mind / Rithmatist

  • March - Guernsey Potato Peel / Declaration of Independence

  • April - Hunger Games / Short History of Nearly Everything (1st half)

  • May - Short History of Nearly Everything (2nd half)

Throughout Semester


Sewing and Arts

Besides reading and writing, Alina's Scholar Time also gives her a chance to work on her hand sewing and art projects. Alina finds that it works well to engage in these projects while listening to audio books/Mentoring in the Classics audios.



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