1. A complete daily schedule:
My son's schedule starts at 7 am and ends at 10 pm at the latest. According to the schedule, he should be in bed by 8 pm. Every part of his day is accounted for. Sounds extreme I know but here is the thing. The schedule is a map when we get lost we consult it. Most days the plan falls apart by 2 pm. It used to be before noon. We are both getting better at keeping it. We are both getting better at consulting thought out the day. The first week was tough, I had to let go of the idea that we would magically be able to keep the schedule entirely but the longer we stick with it, the better it works.
This website is fantastic for helping me organize my resources and lessons. I always see those blog posts by homeschoolers who have the entire year planned and printed. That not me at all. I have no idea where my son will be in a month. Chalk helps me create overarching plans and fill in lessons as we go. There is also space for me to insert videos and links directly into my lessons with means I can cut down on the paper clutter in my space.
I know there are a million and a half of those subscription boxes, I am not sure most of them are worth it, but I have found a few that we LOVE.
- JAM: We are currently doing Invent Your Own Machines. We tried the Minecraft one, but it didn't work out for us. We are going to do the Drawing Bootcamp next. You can try it for free for 14 days I think.
- Tinker Crate: We have been getting these since we moved to the city, three years ago. The crates are high quality and engaging. They are so serious about the science; they include something cause a Tinkerzine that expands and explains whatever the concept was. There are also additional experiments so that the lesson extends beyond the main lesson. If you decide to try it use my code, this isn't an ad; it's just the standard thing that gives us both $10 off the box which is half the regular price.
- ASK Magazine: A children's science magazine for ages 6-9. Each issue was incredibly informative and the funny. I remember the issue that introduced 3D prosthetic limbs the most vividly. Since blerd is turning nine, we are moving on to MUSE which is for 9 - 14.
Brains On! Podcast: A science podcast for kids that worth its weight it gold, easy listening for commuting or lazy days.
Stories Podcast: My son will not shower unless he can listen to stories podcast. This podcast is as good as TV to him.
We also have an Audible subscription, he is the story lover, but lately, I have been getting into it too. Last month, we listened to all of the Harry Potter Books just in time for the 20th anniversary.
5. A Journal
Checking in has been essential for moving forward. I haven't been able to find a book specifically designed for tracking homeschooling that I like but just writing in my journal has been helpful. Having just one journal makes it easier to see patterns in his behavior and mine.