I started last year homeschooling these crazy kids. I make jokes about it from time to time but it has been a very good thing for our family & I love it!
Last year, I struggled...ok..well… truth be told…I still Struggle to be organized from time to time. I learned quick that having 4 different grade levels from 2nd grade to 9th …was no joke! Being organized & prepared is the key! Here’s a few tips that have helped me along the way.
So I have a planning day….& I found the perfect tool! It’s called the “The Well Planned Day”. I purchased it on CBD.com. It was the best $20 I’ve spent.
I love it because it allows me to put all 4 of my kids lesson plans all on the same page without having 4 different pages as I did last year. (Yeah..that was overwhelming & it didn’t last) If you will notice I highlight each lesson that is completed with a different color each day. That way I know when I actually got to do it. Sometimes, what I have planned doesn’t always happen due to the different learning styles and just making sure they really “get it” & understand what I’m teaching.
I also picked up 4 student agendas from The Dollar Tree for …. Yep.. you guessed it.. $1! Each day I write their lessons down in their agenda so they know what to expect & that way… when I’m working with another kiddo, they can look to see what they can do as independent work, so no time is wasted! It works GREAT!
There are two apps that have also made my class a whole lot better!
#1 Free spell
Free spell can be downloaded to your iphone, ipad, or ipod. The kids can add their words by saying the word then typing it in correctly. Later for practice they can take a test. It will repeat their word & they can type how to spell it. It will grade it for them and everything! Sometimes we use this as a pre-test, but when I’m in a hurry I can use is it as the real thing.
The next app which you can download on any kind of device is called Quizlet. This handy-dandy tool basically takes the place of notecards! Gone are the days of writing them down, and studying.. now you can let your kid type it in, & this app also creates games, & word scrambles for whatever they are studying. I use this mostly for vocabulary help. The kids love it, & so do I!
The last two tips I will share is really just home helpful tips that help our house run smoother. Before school started we had a family meeting & I had divided up chores between the 4 kids. Each one has a specific chore to do daily. I posted them on a wipe off chart so there’s no arguing or forgetting what they are supposed to do.
Here’s a great link from Focus on the Family
that will help you with determining what your kids could be doing at the appropriate ages. I can not tell you how much this has helped us. I don’t know how in the world I thought that #1 these things would just magically get done without fussing, or reminding all the time #2 that I could possibly do it all. If your kids aren’t helping around the house… they should be! It’s a GOOD thing! 😉
The next thing that helps is Menu Planning! I used to blog about my weekly menu’s each Monday. I also followed the blog “Menu Plan Monday” from orgjunkie.com
LOVE THIS SITE! She shares her menus as well as other bloggers that link up their menus. So, LOTS of GREAT ideas and FREE recipes! You can see some of my older posts in the sidebar under labels called Menu Plan Monday.
Being Prepared and knowing what I’m cooking each night helps with our grocery bill, & puts my mind at ease. Each week I sit down for about an hour… maybe less… and plan out what I’m having each night. I even let the kids pick a menu & …
let …ahem…..assist them on cooking!
Right now I just use a calendar & write down what we are having & post it on the fridge for all to see. I’m not OCD about it… if we have a bunch of leftovers or something comes up.. we just move things around. No biggy. Life can be hectic… but it doesn’t have to be. These are just a few tips that help me keep my sanity! Which…. is … Much …needed! Hope these simple things can help you too!