Friday, August 14, 2009

Our Workbox System for School . . .

I think we are all ready to start school! It's been a whirlwind week of last-minute preparations for me, and I am still waiting for a few books I purchased at the last minute, but I think we are all set! The kids are ready to get back to school, too. Well, Riley is and Owen wants to 'do school,' but I think Quinn could care less! I am looking forward to using Sonlight curriculum this year for the first time, as well.

One of the things we implemented at the last minute are workboxes. I have been thinking about using these for awhile, but with trying to sell our house, I didn't know if I wanted any more large things taking up room in our school room. Brad encouraged me and said he thought it was fine to go ahead and use them, so we are! (Thanks, babe!) You can read a lot more about using workboxes for homeschooling here, or simply by googling "homeschool workboxes." I learned a lot about them just by reading other homeschoolers' blogs and viewing their photos. I especially liked Heather's boxes, so I copied her great look for ours! :) (Thanks, Heather!)

We are using these this year for several reasons: to help encourage independence for Riley & Quinn's work, to help them 'see' what they have done & what's left to be done, and to help keep them motivated! Here are our boxes before I filled them for the first day.


(You can always click on any of my photos to make them larger.)

Riley's are green and Quinn's are blue. Owen has a small separate set on the right that are red so he can play along. :) The basic premise is that all of their work for the day is in the boxes. So, box #1 might contain Bible, followed my math flashcards in #2, reading assignment in #3, and so on. Everything needed for each activity should be right in the box (pencils, paper, books, etc.). As they complete the activity in the box, they move the number to their check-in sheet which looks like this:

Each number is backed with velcro and can stick on the boxes to start with, and then adhere to the check-in sheet as they go along. When all of the boxes are complete, they are done for the day! I included things in my kids' boxes (along with their regular lessons) like: work with Owen on his colors for 10 minutes, practice your piano lesson, have a snack, read a book to mommy, etc. My hope is that these workboxes will really help us get to the fun extras we never seem to have time for, as well (like logic puzzles, art projects, playing a game, etc.).

And honestly, I think the system is originally set up to be a lot more rigid than what I have. I am just using the basics. I haven't read the workboxes book from Sue Patrick, so I'm just using what I've gathered from other homeschoolers for now. We are using it primarily to make sure we don't miss anything and to keep the kids motivated about "what comes next." Last but not least, here is a photo of the boxes filled (mostly, not done yet!) and ready for the first day!

3 comments:

IUgirl78 said...

These look very cool! I would love to do the same in my classroom, but I don't have room for 25 sets of workboxes. ;) It sounds really neat, though!

Addie said...

Amy,

What an incredible system! You are totally organized. Good luck to you and the children this school year.

Love, Addie

Anonymous said...

I love this, Amy! I like the idea of getting in all of those little things that can just pass us by. We are giving it much thought and may start it. Any tips? Carrie S.