Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Another Schedule Revision and an Initiative Experiment

Well, the schedule I posted here is already obsolete.  We used it until the routine was semi-established and then reverted back to the old goal chart.  I know some veteran ACE homeschoolers who might remember those...The Husband, for one.

I purposely did not purchase planning software this year (big change for me) in an effort to get away from "doing school" and to get closer to "learning as a way of life."  However, there are some tasks, usually the mundane ones, that we forget to do if they are not spelled out for us in a schedule.  So, after using a handwritten goal chart successfully for a week, I created another Excel spreadsheet to use with Thing1.
It is similar to last year when I printed out a daily task list, but this one is for the whole week.  I saved the template in Excel so that I can change the assignments for the week each Sunday night.  The peaceful feeling I get when I look at those red marks reminds me of why I enjoy planning software.

My dilemma now (because I always have one) is how much initiative to expect from a 7-year-old in completing the goals.  I want to put some responsibility on him because he needs it, but when I see "7-year-old" typed out in black and white, I back up a little.  How much prodding throughout the week is appropriate for his age?  Obviously, the tasks that require my attention (spelling, writing, history, and science) are done on my time.  The independent work is the challenge.  My solution for now is to insist on work before play but not to hound him about lolligagging (difficult for me).  Usually a wordless, appropriate consequence works better than my endless nagging.

Last week, he did not accomplish all of his goals before Saturday and, as a consequence, had to stay inside to complete them on Saturday while The Husband and Thing2 were outside working on projects.  I felt bad for him, and I really wanted to let him off the hook.  But with the hope that a couple of disappointing Saturdays would help the initiative development along, I stuck to my guns.

My conclusion from my last schedule experiment is that it was profitable for a few weeks.  I am hoping this goal chart method will last a bit longer.

As for the initiative experiment, results will take time...11 years, perhaps.  Remind me to post the results then.


AMAY said...

Some days, I need an initiative experiment for myself. I hope this works well for you. This is one of the hardest lessons to instill in our children, yet it is one of the most important. Based on life with my daughter, I will say it is a lesson that once learned is easily forgotten, but quickly remembered...if that makes any sense.

AIMA said...

Based on my experience with myself, yes, it does make sense. :)