Sunday, July 15, 2012

Put some Spring into Your Homeschool

Some people homeschool year round, either using their regular curricula or a summer school program, while others just stick with the summer off schedule. I personally, like the latter simply because it gives me the much needed break that I require to get recharged and ready for another year. It may also be because I am a teacher and some habits break hard... Yet, each year as school is winding down and we are trying to put the finishing touches on our last few lessons. Things seem to get tedious. The weather is beautiful and no one wants to be inside. We all get ready to be finished with schoolwork. Yet, finish we must...

There's no reason you should suffer through monotonous final days... change things up... energize the whole bunch to get through the last few days with a bang. Give yourself a change of scenery - have school in the back yard! If that doesn't work, take a day off and go have some fun. Have a picnic or go fishing - or go to the zoo. Give them an opportunity to enjoy the beautiful weather, and then having refreshed yourselves - you can dive back in to finish!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Raising Responsible Fifth Graders

Many years ago, when I taught first grade I had a student whose parents really babied him. They would actually carry him to class - in first grade! He had difficulties doing almost everything we did in first grade. He was less mature than the other children, and just couldn't keep up with the subject matter.

From this experience, I learned that parents who expect much of their children are actually teaching their children responsibility and even fostering maturity in them. If we expect age appropriate behavior from our children, we are more likely to get it than if we expected nothing of them. If we teach them how they should act, or how to perform certain behaviors and they don't - they typically receive a punishment. If they do act as they should and behave appropriately we reward them. All of these actions are part of the wonderful cycle of teaching our children responsibility. Fifth graders are ready and able to be given the responsibility of doing many things around the house. Remember, their maturity level will correspond to what you expect from them!