Thursday, July 28, 2011

Planning for next Year: Advice from my mom.

I had the realization that something had to change.  I knew that we had to loose a few time commitments  this year, but that is easier said than done sometimes.    I thought "Is it the right thing for my kids?  Will they miss out?  Will this negatively impact them?  "   Maybe you know these questions too. The kind that keep  you up at night. 

I have shared that I grew up in a family with 19 children.   I am lucky to be able to go see my mom for advice.  She is a busy lady with many plates spinning.  People often ask me how she does it, and I say "I am  really not sure."  I told her what I was thinking and she gave me some good advice.
She said, " Becky, the only regrets I have on involvement are when I had too much going on.  I then felt like I was grouchy and tired with my kids.  I encourage you to let something go."  An interesting perspective from someone what has been parenting for 40 plus years.

So think about what you can "jettison" as my husband would say.  It might make for a better year. 
Happy Planning!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Article on my son. :-)

This is an article on my son.  I thought you might enjoy.  He asked me if he could teach a class at our local library on origami and make an exhibit.  They were very open and everything went from there. 
More tomorrow on planning.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Planning for Next Year: What can only you do? Where can you get help?

One of the questions I ask when planning  is "What can only I do?" There are activities, subjects, and skills that I can do, and others really can not fill.   But I can use assistance in certain subjects.   There are items on my learning agenda that I know I can use help with. 

I try to think what can I have someone or something else do.  I like to use computers to help with homeschooling.  For instance, I really do not like doing math facts with my children, or honestly any child.  I used to assign them to my student's parents when I taught school.   There is really no one to assign them to in my house.   Please note:  I have been trying.  Luckily, I discovered Facts First.  It is a computer program that teaches and reviews math facts.  It is available from the Homeschool Buyers Co-op.  The Homeschooler Buyers Co-Op has many interesting computer programs, group buys on books, and different interesting products for homeschoolers.  It was one of the first things I signed up for at my first homeschooling convention.  Maybe there is something there you can take off your to do list. 

So my thought of the week,  think about what you can get help with.  Here are a few more ideas that may or may not work with your situation.  I know that everybody's circumstances are so different.  Maybe an idea will lead you to an idea of  something that will help you.

1.  If you can not read every literature or history book in your program to your child, can your child listen to them on CD?  The library has many of these. 

2. Can online classes be helpful?  We love the math class my son takes through AOPS. 

3. Can a spouse or grandparent take something on?  My dad takes my son to OT(occupational therapy) every week.  They have fun and it helps me.  Have a spouse or grandparent read to your child. 

4. Can you hire a tutor for one subject or gather a group of homeschoolers to make up a class?

5. Is there  a class on DVD your student can take?  Is there a good DVD series they could watch each week?  You can check out so many from the public library.

6.  Could  your kids take turns reading to each other?  An older one reads to a younger one or vise-versa?  My kids enjoy this and it helps me tremendously.

7.  Is there a high school person who you may be able to hire to help you?

Just a list to get your started.  Hope it helps you find someone or something to help you. 

Happy Planning!

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Planning for Next Year: Links from John Hopkins CTY

I am trying to plan during the month of July.  I am searching out some new links and new ideas for next year.  We try to plan most of the year before August as it seems to make the year go more smoothly.  We do not plan in stone, but plan to give ourselves a road map.  We still take some detours and correct our route, but we try to aim for a destination.  Though that destination has a way of changing through the years.

In planning I found that the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth has some wonderful links on their web site.  If you click here you will see the main page of links.   My favorite page of links was this one.  The resource page includes links  for twice exceptional children, links to articles, and publications.  I found it very helpful.   It had a wide variety of resources that is worth checking out if you have a gifted child, a child with a learning issue, or just to learn more about what is available online in the world of learning.

I hope your road map continues to develop and become more interesting.  For me a little planning everyday is more helpful than hours all at once.

Happy Planning!