your homeschool for success.
Prov. 29:18 says, "Without a vision, the people perish."
Another version says, "
the people run wild."
Homeschooling without a vision is like getting on the Internet.
You click on this link, then the next link, then the next,
and all of a sudden you realize you don't know how you got
to where you are or how to get back to where you started.
Here's how to organize your homeschool for success:
long-term goals. Decide which subjects you are going to
teach each day of the week. You are not required to teach
every subject every day. For instance, many homeschoolers
alternate teaching science and social studies daily or weekly
or even do science for 1/2 year and social studies for 1/2
year. Older students can do math 2-3 days per week, doing
2-3 lessons per day, and still cover the same amount of material
they would have covered doing it daily.
you are doing unit studies, write down all the topics
you are studying for the year. For those of you doing
unit studies or a lot of mix and match curriculum, a must-have
resource is The Checklist
by Cindy Downes.
the amount of time you need to spend on each topic (or
unit). For instance, if you are teaching 6 topics in physics
(electricity, magnetism, light, sound, heat, and uses
of physics), allow six weeks for each topic (36 weeks
divided by 6).
you are using textbooks, figure out the amount of time
needed by dividing the number of lessons or pages to be
covered by number of times (days) you will teach the class.
(Example: BJU's Heritage Studies for Christian Schools
for 3rd grade has 183 pages. Because you are required
to have 180 days of school, you need to cover 1 page per
day or 5 pages per week.)
the resources you are going to use to teach the topics.
This includes worksheets, library books, textbooks, lab
equipment, etc. This will give you a shopping (borrowing)
list. Do this one semester or unit at a time.
a list of your priorities. a) personal relationship with
God,b) husband, c) children, d) job, which in this case
is your homeschool, e) ministry/outreach, f) other activities.
Keep this list in front of you at all times so that when
you are planning your days, you will keep these priorities
a daytimer with time slots. Write in what you are going
to do and when you are going to do it. Here's where you
get specific. Put in reminders. Remind yourself to go
to the library, order books, sign up for an activity,
etc. Schedule breaks. Write down appointments for time
with your husband, family time, and personal time for
yourself. If you write them down, then when you are tempted
to say "yes" to something, you can look on your calendar
and say "No, I'm sorry, I already have an appointment
at that time." No one needs to know what that appointment
is! For personal time, find a friend with kids of similar
ages and exchange babysitting time. Alternate who goes
out for time with the girls or to shop while the other
watches the kids.
a checklist. Every morning, make a list of things to do
and then stick to it as much as possible.
Manage Your Time Wisely
Why? It's Biblical! (Eccl. 3:1, "There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven.") You can
begin to manage your time wisely by using time-saving tools:
an answering machine with Caller ID. Don't answer the
phone during school time unless it's urgent!
a portable phone. Do your housework while returning phone
E-mail. It takes less time than talking on the phone.
The questions and answers are brief and you don't get
sidetracked on new issues.
Task. Cook dinner or fold laundry while listening to drills
or memory work; read or listen to tapes while traveling
in the car; have children read to you as you are ironing,
or eliminate low priority items. Derric Johnson in his
book, Excellence is Never An Accident said, "Stress
is what happens when your gut says 'NO' but your mouth
says, 'Of course, I'll be glad to.'" Learn to say
NO. You can't do everything. Anything that doesn't meet
a specific need should be eliminated.
on one day at a time. Don't worry about what you have
to do tomorrow or next week. Matt. 6:34, "Therefore
do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about
itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
to others those things that anyone can do. Get the kids
to help with housework. Pay a maid if you can afford it.
Hire an older teen to teach your preschooler once or twice
Ask God to show you what's important. Listen to the Holy
Spirit over advice from friends, relatives, and even homeschool
your husband's input and agreement.
yourself at the end of each unit, semester, and year,
"How can I improve next time?" Then write it down so you'll
good records: (1) Keep a daily Log
Book. (2) Maintain a portfolio
for each child. (3) Issue your own report cards or keep
track of what you have covered in The
(4) Keep an ongoing transcript of work done for high school
as you go. If it works, don't fix it. But if it's not
working, don't be afraid to change midyear even if it