The Schedule: Truth, Beauty, Goodness Co-op

Model of the Globe Theatre
Life is good.  The water has gone down.  He came home.  I have a passport!  On top of all that, I know more about soybeans than I thought possible, Norman Rockwell used cutting edge technology, Shakespeare was brilliant in his use of high and low comedy, Haydn's Farewell Symphony is beautiful yet manipulative, Paul Laurence Dunbar knew the Wright Brothers, my children sew better than I do and boys and girls singing "The Keys to Canterbury" back and forth is too sweet.

Our Mason-style co-op, Truth, Beauty, Goodness just met and the above paragraph is just a sampling of all we enjoyed in our 4+ hours together. Previously, I wrote about the questions that are posed to new participants in our group.  You can read that post here.  Now I'd like to explain our schedule for you.

Helianthus annuus

We meet a total of 8 times per semester:
  • 1 planning meeting
  • 6 co-op meetings (every other Friday)
  • 1 Family Night
This does not include any extra trips for shows/performances/etc.

The Planning Meeting
With planners, calendars and a computer spread over the table, the planning meeting is where the moms gather together and choose the dates we will meet, the homes we will meet in and our specific plans for our subject.  We talk about how we might do things differently and where we might improve.  I usually send a question our beforehand that we also discuss - something like "How is what I do here for the children's sake?" or "How will I establish more relationships in our group?" or even "What is something that Mason said about my subject that I will try to implement?"

Next, we go over the schedule carefully.  We use short lessons and vary the types of lessons.  It might not look like it, but this is pretty intense as complete attention is expected and generally, the kids have learned to attend very well.

The Co-op Meetings
Below is the schedule for our meetings.

Shakespeare     8:30-9:05     35 min.
Folksong          9:05-9:15     10 min.
Picture Study   9:15-9:35     20 min.
Handicrafts      9:35-10:15   40 min.
Snack              10:15-10:35  20 min.
Hymn              10:35-10:45  10 min.
Composer       10:45-11:05   20 min.
Poetry             11:05-11:25   20 min.
Nature Study  11:25-12:25   60 min. 

(see more schedules on the TBG Community page for 2013-2014 and 2014-2015)

There are a few issues with the schedule.  First, because every family is in a different historical period at home, we have note attempted to correlate the lessons.  This has worked out anyway, as connections are inevitable and the children find them on their own.  Also, the handicrafts section is new this semester for us and it seems to be working out well-it just pushes lunch back pretty late for some families.  We try to keep nature study last, as each child takes a different amount of time to work in their notebooks.

I hope that you find this explanation of our co-op schedule helpful! It is an event our family anticipates and enjoys preparing for between meetings.


  1. It looks as if you and your group have hit on a successful schedule. I totally envy your organization and dedication and wish we could be a part of it. We still have not found our niche in the co-op world. I hope things continue to going along swimmingly for you all.

  2. This sounds like great fun. I ran a Keepers of the Faith class for just over a year, but found I was doing all the work and other moms kept cancelling out if something else came along :o( Great to see your group so successful.

  3. Sounds like a great group, and I'm so glad you got your passport in time.