Monday, December 30, 2013

New Year, New Start

Every time the new year is closing in, I feel so much motivation to revamp our school routine.  This year is no different.  I almost feel like I want to have our school year run from Jan-Dec with taking the month of June and December off completely (and more random times through the year).  That would work so well for us, but I guess it would mess the kids up with their "grade" level.  I probably shouldn't worry about that.

We're getting back on track January 2nd with just easing into Math and reading.  On the 6th we'll pick back up full force.  We are going to be starting IEW with a friend and I'm looking forward to that.  I've always been intimidated by it, but she has some experience and I think having the kids do it together will be fun!

I also ordered Life Of Fred to supplement math, mostly for Natalie since she has a bit more trouble grasping the concepts.  I'm hoping they'll find this fun.  I've heard that most kids enjoy it, but that it is best as a supplement to another program.

We're going to start a simple spelling workbook (Spectrum).  I somehow forgot to start spelling in the fall and was reminded of it when we had our homeschool review!  Oops!

Wyatt and Natalie will also continue with the Minecraft Homeschool lessons.  We tried it out before Christmas and they liked it.  I like that it is something they look forward to!

We had started out our year using a lot of Easy Peasy.  I still like the program, but I found that the older two kids would rather have pencil and paper in hand.  Mainly Wyatt--he didn't like the clicking around and reading on the computer.

I'm also going to be implementing a rewards system for school time.  I know there are differing opinions on rewarding kids for something they should already be doing, but here is my thought (some of this is after talking to a friend who does something similar).  As adults, we are rewarded for hard work.  We are motivated by many things, with money and rewards at the top of the list.  Yeah, the satisfaction of completing a job well and such are there but let's be honest...most kids are going to work harder if they know there is something else waiting for them. 
I'll share what I come up with once I get it tweaked.  Hopefully it helps to keep us all on track better!