Time for a Mid-Year Homeschool Checkup: How to see how you’re doing!
The Christmas holiday season is almost over; the beginning of a new calendar year is looming on the horizon. The mid-year point in a traditional academic year is a good time to take stock and evaluate. Lots of posts on the 7Sisters Homeschool blog can encourage you with ideas for recovering from fall semester mistakes and making the most of the coming spring semester opportunities.
Mid-Year Homeschool Checkup
Here are three tips for beginning a mid-year homeschool checkup:
1. Take it slow.
Quick question for ya: What day of the week is it, anyway???
If you are like most of us, the whole rhythm of homeschool life has been off for weeks now. Allow yourself time to recover your house (decorations do NOT put themselves away at my house, either). Don’t expect yourself or your kids to be immediately 100% on top of the game; you may need a few days to ease back into your typical homeschool schedule. Try setting progressive goals, aiming for a bit more academic accomplishment with each day of a regular school week, and see if you can’t get back in the swing within a week rather than a day. As you add back in each chunk of learning, take a close look at it. How does this subject feel at the almost-halfway point of the school year?
2. Ask hard questions.
A little honest evaluation as January begins can be worth its weight in gold. Talk to your kids. Talk to your spouse. Talk to yourself. Talk to the Lord. Is that unit study approach you planned for History working out like you hoped it would? Did that timeline you set for writing the research paper turn out to be cruel and unusual punishment? Were there areas that got skimmed-over in the fall, and you need a new approach to stay accountable this spring semester? It’s better to face the hard questions now than to wait until the academic year is almost over.
3. Make homeschooling healthy.
There’s a reason people join the gym every January; the start of the New Year is a popular time to begin (or begin again) a healthier lifestyle. The same is true for homeschoolers, and our kids can learn a lot from a parent’s honest priority-shifting in the interest of health. Don’t just think about your physical health. At the same time that there may have been WAY too much sugar in your diet, has there been too little Bible reading and prayer? Did your brisk walking habit fall by the wayside when the Christmas tree went up? Have you and your spouse had too much time with extended family gatherings and not enough time for attention to your marriage? Give yourself a check-up (physical, emotional, spiritual and relational) and encourage your kids to do the same.
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