Yes, it’s been one of those crazy years. You know… the kind where you feel like you are just making it by a hair’s breadth. There have been a lot of triumphs, but also a lot of tragedies. It’s just been a tough year. However, by God’s amazing grace (yet again) we will make it to the finish line.
As I look back over my children’s homeschool accomplishments, I realize that though they did well… we didn’t make it as far as I felt they needed to go. I’m disappointed… but I realize that it isn’t the end of the world. After all tomorrow is another day… Another great reason for homeschooling. To make up those areas in which we have a few deficits, we plan on homeschooling throughout the summer. Not a full fledged all subject homeschool endeavor… but a focused academic pursuit. Each of the kiddos has a specific area in which they have a weakness. We plan on working through that weakness during the summer, and look forward to fall finding each of them on top of their game!
First grade daughter needs to work on reading fluency. We will be doing Time4Learning Language Arts as well as some other phonics based programs.
Third grade daughter needs work on multiplication and division. We will be using some online math resources to help her gain mastery in this area.
Seventh grade twins need work on math skills and spelling. We will be using Vocabulary Spelling City and Time4Learning in those specific areas to boost their mastery levels.
Do you find yourself in this same situation? What are your plans for this summer?
One of my favorite things to watch as a kid was always the muppet show. The muppets have a way of making everyone smile… even grumpy old men!
So without further ado – celebrate the fourth of July with the muppets!
I recently read an article in the Carnival of Homeschooling about making and using a summer bucket list to keep track of all the super fun amazing things that you want to do with your kids this summer! I love that idea and am so inspired to try it…I hope to pass a little inspiration on to you!
For those of you who love visual reminders, check out this printable summer bucket list. I know summertime isn’t all about having fun, we will definitely be including some online summer skill building. Yet, the bucket list will be handy to keep us thinking of great things to do. I also love how Little Wonders’ Day made her bucket list come to life with a real bucket! (see picture below) For those of you who love graphic organizers check out this printable bucket list! This is even better – let the kid’s color their own bucket list with this printable color page!
I love this idea from a blogger doing a fall bucket list. She makes a great mantel piece decoration with small buckets for her bucket list! This blogger gives several great ideas for bucket lists from old lunch pails to recycled plastic containers… how fun!
Wondering what exactly should go in your bucket list? Have no fear, these bloggers think of it all. This one asks questions to help you think of your own bucket list ideas while this blogger gives you 107 great ideas for your summer bucket list. Ok, ok, this is the last one I promise… but this printable is adorable for a fridge worthy bucket list! Ok… if that isn’t enough inspiration here’s the beginning (rough draft) of our bucket list.
Visit grandparents in Texas
Go to Camp with kids
Go to the beach
Go to a Major League Baseball Game
Go on a long nature hike
Fun day events
Build a blanket fort outside
Watch the stars on a beautiful evening
Have a water balloon fight
Go on a family bike ride
Watch a movie outside
Homemade ice cream
Do bubble painting
Make beaded necklaces
Let girls pick a favorite pinterest craft and do it!
Everyone has struggles now and again… even the best of homeschoolers. So, don’t let it get you down if your kids have a few learning gaps. I know when I find out my children have a few weak areas it really gets me down. There isn’t any one else to point your finger at and say – Why? There is only yourself and your thoughts of “What could I have done different?” I have been there many times, but I realized that it happens. The question is, now that we know there are some issues… what are we going to do about it?
Summer is the perfect time to bridge those gaps in your child’s learning. If you found that they have weak areas as a result of a standardized test, then most of your work is already done for you. You simply need to take the test and find the sub sets where your child scored low. You can focus on those particular areas during the summer to try to strengthen the areas that were troublesome.
I like to do this with my own children each summer. Yet, I personally also like to have the summer as a time for me to recoup and refresh myself. If I can’t recover and refill my mother’s heart I will be of no use. I seriously use the summer to do that. That doesn’t mean that my kids get off scott free with no schooling. Ohhh… no way! I have tried to find ways that they can still get the remedial work they need without it stressing me out or requiring much thought on my part. I love to use online summer programs that fit the areas that were troublesome especially homeschool science. I set it up on each of their computers that the favorites bar on their browser has all the link to the summer review programs that I want them to use. This allows them to individually access these websites without asking me for help. Granted, they don’t do school everyday, but they do it whenever they are bored or it is raining! I look at it as automated summer homeschooling!
What do you do to help your kiddos bridge their gaps during the summer?
We typically aren’t homeschoolers that school in the summer. Summer is usually pretty sacred to me! I love to have time to get my mind and heart refreshed and renewed. Yet, my children do seem to forget some of what they learned during the year if we don’t do any schooling at all. This year I’ve settled on using the Internet to help keep their brains fresh while giving me a much needed respite from teaching. In years past, we have used the online curriculum that supplements our homeschool during the regular school term. This year, however, I am using Vocabulary Spelling City to help them keep their brains sharp.
Up until now, we have enjoyed this curriculum from a purely spelling point of view. I enter their lists, and they practice and test over them. Yet, this summer I plan on taking advantage of the wide variety of specialized lists that Spelling city has to offer. They have lists that cover just about every math and science topic as well as lists for SAT Practice and even lists that help you learn the state capitals. There are really fun animated games that can be played, and even a test at the end. All of this can be monitored by the parent, and the software automatically keeps track of your child’s progress. That sounds like a winner to me!