Post #27 – How to daily stay on track with Homeschooling

Good Morning!!

I LOVE it when there is white light during a sunrise.  It is as if the earth is saying it has a bright idea coming our way!  Well, I do too and I would like to share it with those of you who might be looking for something to help keep their kids on track but also provide you with an easy way to see where your kids are spending their time most days.

Ultimately, this post is for my kiddos because I want them to be able to look back and remember the various ways we tried to figure out how to make learning not only fun but manageable while homeschooling.  This year we implemented a few new approaches to learning but the kids found them difficult to either remember or prioritize.  So after a few difficult first days of school, I felt inspired to make ‘Wipe Boards’ at the back of their recording notebooks.

Curly Cook’s Wipe Board

The idea behind the Wipe Board is rather simple.

Joy Boy’s Wipe Board

First you make a PRIORITIZED list of all the things you can think of that your kiddo needs to do in a day, before they can come and ask you if they can go play or doing something other than homeschool. My kids can get distracted pretty easily, so I have realized that I must write down EVERYTHING I expect them to do, that way there is less arguing, getting upset and sneaking allowed in their daily lives.

After you have your list, cover it with a sheet of plastic.  I used the plastic from a clear file folder (think old term papers you used to have to turn in, covered with a clear plastic).  I found stiff plastic to not only hold up well but clean up nicely.  I hot glued the plastic to the list, at the back of the recording notebooks and wallah . . . you have a Wipe Board that you can use with any dry erase marker and a paper towel.

As the child completes a task, he uses a dry erase marker to cross it off his list.  The rule in our family is NO SKIPPING.  We do things in order because the list was already created with the highest priority listed from top to bottom.  If a child completes something on his list earlier in the week that he does not need to do that day, he can go ahead and cross it off.   I have found that this little Wipe Board has really helped not only my kids stay on task but it has given me a tool to know how to answer, “Can I go play Mom?” . . . Me, “Is your list completed for the day?”

As well as using the Wipe Board, the kiddos need to fill in daily record books.  We found these cute Brazilian, hard covered daily notebooks at Universal (think Kohl’s with no clothing).  The kids not only fill in daily information that allows them to practice their spelling of the days of the week, time they wake up each day, foods they eat, and basic easy to misspell words, but they also get to learn how to better use each day.

I especially appreciate the visual example I have in teaching my kids to slow down and have better handwriting.  Curly Cook has improved substantially in the few weeks we have been implementing this new plan.  I also feel it will help for the future if we have to report our homeschooling curriculum to anyone.  Everything each child learns each day is in one notebook with easy access, like a Teacher’s Planning Book.

Even GingerSnap and El Gringo have a recording book.

I also use this book from Lakeshore for our entire family, including my daily schedule.

I love having the kids fill out their meeting plan for Family Devotional in this planner, as well as the Family Goals we make to go on twice monthly field trips.  It is also an easy way to record what we did each month and then have the opportunity to look back and remember how the year was spent.  The kids also have a checking off chart that I print off for each week that I paste in this planner.  I feel this planner is a fire hydrant for government homeschooling fires.  It is a way that I can be prepared if I need to hand over hard copy proof of what we have been doing for our homeschool, instead of turning over the kid’s notebooks and worrying that I might not get them back again.  I would be sad to lose these planners but it is better to be safe than sorry.

I hope these ideas helped.  If you have any questions, please let me know.

Thanks for stopping by,

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