Monday, August 11, 2014

Ideas for the New School Year

A Hand Tracing or Hand Print
At the beginning of each school year, trace your child's hand or make a hand print, then cut it out & laminate. I got the idea from Crissy's Crafts, although her idea is a little different, and goes along with the book "The Kissing Hand ." We do a hand print each year, and it's fun to see how they grow!

Height String 
We cut a piece of string equal to my kiddos' height, at the beginning of their kindergarten year. You could do this every year if you want though.

A Completed Questionnaire 

At the beginning of each school year, have children fill out a yearly survey... These are fun to look back on and see how the answers changed from year to year. There are plenty of super-cute ones to choose from on Pinterest. This is the one we use, and I love it! 

A picture of your child... 
Either go to the back yard and snap a quick photo, or if you want to be all Pinteresty about it then here are a few more ways to do it...  

I also think it's nice to get a shot of all the kids together... (posted here) The second one cracks me up! 

Back-To-School Breakfast..
We like to grab some doughnuts! This is a special treat, since we hardly ever do it, so it's a fun way to mark the new school year. 

Back-To-School Party or Field Trip...
If you start home schooling after public schools start, some party places will be deserted like splash pads, parks, etc. If you start before they do then be sure to take a "fun day" when the other kids start school. Load up a picnic and head to the park to enjoy some nature study. Take along journals, pencils, binoculars, camera, etc. Or, just go on a fun field trip. The point is, while other kids are stuck in a boring classroom, you get to have fun being out-and-about!


Back-to-School Brainstorming for Mom & Dad... 
Some things to re-consider each year: 

  • What ways do each of your children learn best?
  • (consider their learning style... has it changed since last year?)
  • What things do you want to accomplish this year?
  • What things do they want to accomplish this year?
  • What worked well last year and what didn't?
  • What were the best things about the last school year that you want to repeat or include more this year?
  • Review your educational philosophy

Back-to-School Brainstorming for The Kids...
Ask your kids each year: What would you like to be knowledgeable in by the end of the year? (So you can be sure to include it in your plans.... If it's totally off topic from anything you've got going already, consider taking a break from your regular school plans at some point and having a special unit study all about their chosen subject.) 

Name about three weaknesses you'd like to overcome by the end of the year. (This can be physical, mental, spiritual, etc... anything they see as a hindrance to them that they'd like to overcome... from unable to shoot a free throw to a bad habit... anything.) 


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