Friday, June 4, 2010

On Your Mark...

I've been working all week to get things ready for the official start of our Summer {Home}School v2.0.

Here's a little peek into just a few of the things I did this week:

The schedule is done & posted:

Last year we did a "routine" that did not include times. I was worried that having times would stress me out because, although I definitely need a structure to my day, I can sort of become a slave to what the clock says. I know. It sounds strange, but I am a woman of extremes. I tend to hover either near the "parked on the couch in my pajamas all day" end of life... or at the "anal retentive, type A control freak" end of life. So this year I've added times, and I am taking them as a suggestion for myself. I understand that very few days will actually follow this schedule and that when things interfere it in no way means that I am an irresponsible mess. I know this. I do. Really.

You'll notice that all of the academic subjects are in white. That is so that they can be moved by Tyson. One of the things I taught him this year is how to "eat the frog." Some days he wants to get the worst stuff done first (i.e. eat the frog) and some days he prefers to put it off until later. Either way, it helps him to have a little control over his day.

I have a few spare subjects on the other side of the door:

Also, I reworked the chore lists. Riley now has a list of his own, and they are both posted on the fridge daily:
The lists are in top loading page protectors so that they can use dry erase markers to mark each task off the list when it's done.
This is an example of one of Riley's lists. (We have a different one for each day and I change them in the evenings.) I drew pictures to help him figure out what he's supposed to do. (I'm not sure why I put pictures on Tyson's list since he can read now. Maybe out of habit? Maybe to make it a little more fun? Or maybe out of some subconscious need for him to retain a little of his littleness...)

I also put together Tyson's summer reading folder. He has so many papers for this subject that this one needed its own folder. Since we won't be doing a lot of worksheets this summer, I don't think he'll have a folder for any other subject.
In this folder he has:
  • Summer Reading Club Log for our local public library
  • Our own summer reading log to track book titles, minutes, etc.
  • Summer Reading Log for school
  • Recommended books for summer reading (from school)
Tyson's school encourages reading over the summer. The thing I thought was funny is that they give the kids a prize if they read ten books over summer vacation (chapter books count for three). Summer vacation is 12 weeks long. It doesn't seem like they are setting the expectations very high. We read almost every day... at least 4-6 days a week. (Even when we are camping.) And that's just the days that Tyson reads to us! That doesn't count all the books I read aloud to him. Needless to say, I'm confident he's going to earn the prize from his second grade teacher.

So, do you read a lot in the summer? How do you encourage your kids to read?


I would love to hear from you (as long as you're not a robot.)!