Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Workbox Success!




Homeschooling is a continual learning process.   Last semester we kind of floundered around a bit, but this semester we’ve found a great curriculum that is working for us.  Organizing  and scheduling has been a challenge for me, even though I really like to be organized. I don’t know anything about being  a school teacher or how classrooms run.  Anyway, I had a little schedule I’d written out for each day, but we rarely stuck to it.  Keeping L focused on the different subjects was a challenge, all he wanted to do was Phonics worksheets.  He loves to learn to read.  But is not much motivated to do anything else.  I know nothing else is as critical right now, but I also want to cultivate good habits of diligent work and a love of all subjects, and a variety of books.  I had been reading about the workbox system on various blogs.  It looked great, but I had no space for actual work boxes.  So I came up with my own system. It took me about a week of afternoons to get everything purchased and put together, but we introduced the workboxes on Monday.  Yeah, I know, only three days into it, but already, it is making SUCH a difference in our school day.  Here’s how it works for us.  
Both L and K have a canvas bin.  Each bin has their “board” in it where they keep their numbers, 1-9.  There are also 9 folders.  In the morning, the board is empty, and each folder has a number on it.  After our group/together/circle time (Bible study, calendar time, poetry, geography, science reading), they get started on their “workboxes”.  It’s like a surprise every day what’s going to be inside!  They so look forward to tearing into them to see what they’ll find.  I mix it up with phonics, readers, science worksheets, coloring sheets, math games and problem sheets, spelling tests, music flashcards and Letter of the Week stuff for K.  The easiness of each folder makes things move quickly. It also lets them each work at their own pace.  Seeing all their complete numbers on the board motivates them to keep going.  So far, I’m loving it, and they are to.  We’re covering so much more in a day than we ever have before!  Yay for organized school and workboxes! :)