Where is the true 4-Day program?

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I saw the following feedback on the Forums:

I REALLY love our Core this year, but I was disappointing that you chose to schedule Bible, Readers, and some LA five days a week. We broaden our children's education outside the home one day a week. Sonlight's past 4-day schedules dovetailed perfectly with this. Now, it's just frustrating. We want a 4-DAY program...not a 4-day with some extra fifth day requirements.

First, let me say: I love feedback like this! We absolutely want to hear from you. We take your suggestions very seriously and many of the updates we made to our Instructor's Guides this year were draw directly from your suggestions and requests.

Second, I totally get how this would be frustrating. I helped write the Bible notes and schedule in a few of the levels, so I'm more that a little bit to blame for this disappointment. I'm so sorry that our new schedule layout has created more work for you. That was not at all our intent.

So, third, let me lay out my take on all this and, hopefully, give you a little bit of encouragement:

  1. Reading/Language Arts has long been scheduled five days a week. That's not new this year. We built Sonlight this way because Dr. Ruth Beechick, who strongly influenced my mom's philosophy of Language Arts, urges you to have your children read a little every day. And I agree. I struggled with reading, so giving me many opportunities--and lots of time--to develop this skill is important. This year we kept that format, including the fun fifth-day LA assignments. If that does not work with your schedule, please feel free to skip those assignments. Do not feel any compulsion to cram it into the rest of your week just because it's scheduled in the Instructor's Guide.
  2. If we believe kids should do Reading and LA every day, I couldn't leave Bible off that list! But you can skip the fifth day Bible passages just like Reading if that works better for your family. I tried to keep the day five reading manageable and devotional without the extra study resources. Even if you're one of the many families on the go once a week, I do hope you take some time for Bible reading... even if it's not part of your homeschool schedule.
  3. Let me reiterate: We're here to serve you. Your feedback is invaluable and if not having a true, purely 4-Day program is making homeschooling harder for you... we want to know. I'm certainly not going to guarantee anything beyond our already stellar year-long Love to Learn Guarantee, but we will keep your insights and suggestions in mind as we work to improve our homeschool curriculum programs in the future.

I do like positive feedback too. You know, stuff like, "I love your updates! You guys rock! Best improvements ev'ah!" That kind of thing. Feel free to send those in too <smile>.

But, seriously: What can we do to improve your homeschool experience?

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Empty Nester

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