6 TBSP cocoa, 1/4 C butter, 1 C sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1/3 C flour, 2 eggs, Cook 350 - 25 mins.



Every now and then, in a homeschooling household, there comes a time when the current system has to be rearranged. As with most things in life, things change. Kids grow older, a parent's role in their educational life changes and the system of yesterday becomes the system that has ceased to have any worth what-so-ever to the family it serves.

I have recently found our household in this position. Our old system is out of date. It's time for a restructuring of our homeschooling day and I have to be the one to do the deed.

In our old system, our 16 year old son Kazz is on his own doing his college work. Brise, our 12 year old, waits for me to tell him what to do each day. Vinze, our 9 year old, does the same and our twins, Daxx and Kole, frolic around until they decide they want to "do" school.

They are not quite old enough to be in full-out Kindergarten so I allow them to run the show at this stage. They know they have books. They know I'll teach them if they ask and they know they don't have to do anything at all until September of this year if they don't want to. Oddly enough, they ask to do work at times and love it when they work. That system has worked well, until now.

As we go along I have a feeling that Brise and Vinze could really benefit from having more responsibility on their plate. I need to figure out how to plan the day so they know exactly what they are doing, in what order and for how long, without me watching their every move.

Truth be told, I need them to do this as much as they need to learn this discipline. Why? Because I will be teaching 2 little boys how to read, write, reason and rhyme next school year. That will take much of our homeschooling hours. My time can be better spent with the wee ones, while the older boys learn time management and self-discipline.

One of the first things I would like to do is buy some customized stamps. I'm going to have some made for Brise and Vinze so they will have their own to mark their work, books, carrying cases, notebooks and various other items. They are going to have to organize their work area. Other stamps will be ready made to mark their progress with dates, times and words; like "done" "corrected" "2nd chance worksheet" and so on.

Once I have the system down, I will have the stamps made. That's one idea. The next has to do with shelves/drawers that my friend Stacy has begun to implement. Each drawer holds an assignment and they must be done in order....but THAT is a post for another day.

Wish me luck! I'll need it!


Tracey said...

Sounds very interesting. I teach 5th grade in public school and I have always been interested in how home school teachers organize there day and do it all. Keep us in the loop. I'd love to hear how it all goes.

Heather said...

This is what works for me/us.
I figure out how much of each subject I want them to have done by the end of the week, then make up a list for each (Madeleine and Dale) and put it on the fridge. As they complete it, I cross it off with a highlighter (so I can still read it to check it as well as to help plan the next week).
I think math and phonics are quite important so I have them do eight pages a week, two each day of school. History and science Madeleine does once a week; spelling has three weekly tasks (text, sentences/copying, test) so they do that daily.
I decide how many subjects they have to do per day--not how long it should take. If they finish their math in 20 minutes, great. If it takes two hours, yucky for them. On occasion, they've worked a day ahead to have a four-day weekend, too.
THEY decide which non-daily subjects they do when.

And over the summer, they have to do four pages a day, hitting each subject at least once a week, and we don't do spelling. That way they don't forget everything--less review time in the fall!

Your mileage may vary. Good luck!

Eleanor Joyce said...

interesting --i'll be watching for my ideas. i'm homeschooling our girls --10th, 8th and 6th grades. I write each day's stuff (a week at a time) in a hard-backed funky composition book. They see what needs to be done for the week (including appointments, outings, chores, etc.) They have some flexibility - if they want to double up math one day, and skip it the next - that's fine with me. We're pretty flexible, but it works for the most part.

Shari Lyle-Soffe said...

You sound so organized. I guess with all those boys you would have to be. I can't wait to read how this all develops.

I interviewed Lisa Bently, homeschool mom, for my blog. She is featured today at


Stacy said...

The drawer system has worked wonders for this house so far. Only been a little while, so I'm crossing my fingers that it continues. It has helped Ian so much with organizing his stuff and somewhat with his time.