Thursday, July 26, 2012

How Do You...Prepare for the New School Year?

How do you prepare for a new school year?

We are beginning our formal studies again about a week-and-a-half.  This year I'll have a 5th grader, 3rd grader, 1st grader, and two preschoolers.   Though I often get overwhelmed by the massive task of homeschooling my children, I love it, too!  I usually begin planning a new school year before the old one is complete.  (Or how about this one?  I already know what we're doing for science next year.)

Aside from the obvious gathering and purchasing of materials, the best thing I did to prepare for this coming school year was to talk to my kids.  (I was inspired by Stacy, who asked her kids to help evaluate their school year.)  As we talked, I jotted down notes in my trusty spiral notebook.  They talked, I talked.  I asked questions about our schedule.  They gave ideas.  They frowned about what they didn't like.  I starred the margins and circled thoughts.  When we were done, I was so glad I had taken those twenty minutes with them because I had a clearer picture of where to take this next school year. 

There was one subject that I had continued to add to our schedule because I thought they all loved it.  Come to find out, they were all okay with discontinuing it.

I had planned to order Owen the same handwriting book that Maddie had loved last year.  He hates handwriting and I thought maybe this would make him love it, too.  Come to find out, he hates handwriting because it takes "too long" so I found a book with shorter lessons.  

Gavin was concerned that by the time he takes care of the dog, does chores, and completes his school work, he will have no time for leisure (aka Legos).  We worked out a system where he and Maddie can rotate dog duty and housework each week, freeing more leisure time.  

I could go on, but the point is, preparing for the school year was made easier by a simple conversation! I'm going to make this a yearly tradition.

How do you get ready for your school year?  Let us know in the comments. 

Also, if you have a question for a future "How Do You...?" post, share that in the comments, too, or send me an e-mail!   I'd love your input!

1 comment:

  1. I love this idea! There is much to be learned (and gained) by simply listening. And sometimes it comes down to asking the right questions.


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