Homeschool Classroom Completion Report

Writing down a to-do list is just a tool to help you stay organized in the homeschool classroom. It is however only effective when followed up with a completion report. Just as you have a list of things to be done in a week on your to-do list, at the end of the week you need to write down exactly what all you managed to cross off the list. Here’s how it helps.

Clear Progress Marker

This completion report will allow you to see the progress you made during the week. Similarly you can have a completion report for the month, the quarter and even the year. Since the to-do list already specifies the goals you need to achieve, think of this as your progress monitor towards achieving those goals.

Time Consumer Identifier

Sometimes you can figure out how you overestimated the time you would need for a specific task. In other cases you may find that you didn’t schedule enough time for a particular activity. The completion report will help you better identify the time taken for each task on your to- do list.

Sense of Accomplishment

As you write down the completion report, you will get a good look at what all you managed to achieve that week. This tends to build up your level of satisfaction. You feel that you are going places. This motivates you and allows you to perform even better the next week.

Planning Future Goals

As you work through your weekly to -do list you will be able to plan your activities better. Subsequent lists will be more realistic in terms of time versus activities planned. Allowing you to make more progress in the same time duration.

Making Conscious Choices

Your procrastination is now tackled as you make conscious choices to work through the to- do list in order to have a bunch of stuff to add to your completion report. This means that your homeschool classroom and your household related chores both get a boost. Leaving you feeling more in control of things and with time for everything on your to- do list.

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The Upcoming To-Do List For Homeschool Teachers

Mix of house chores and classroom activities always crowd the brain of a homeschool teacher. While she’s trying to get the homeschool students to conjugate their verbs, she’s also mentally sorting through the items she needs to get from the grocery store. A to-do list is a great way to keep track of all that needs to be done, be it organizing the homeschool classroom or allocating time to get the house work done.

Strategic Procrastination

By keeping an upcoming to-do list ready at all times, you can make the most of your time. Do the more urgent things soon, and leave the others for a later date. You can even organize the actions based on the time available to you. For instance when you have half an hour free you may not be able to run to the market and get your grocery shopping done, but you can definitely reorganize the books in preparation for the topics you will be teaching this month.

Keep it Portable and Accessible

Writing to-do lists is good, but not being able to find them later is terrible. It would completely defeat the purpose of this guiding tool if you can’t access it. So once you have finished writing it out, pin it to the noticeboard in your homeschool classroom. Then take a photograph of it with your smartphone, so that you can access it in the home, and when you are out running errands as well.

As Comprehensive As Possible

You can have a number of things to do which you feel silly putting up on the board. Don’t worry about it. If you need to get this done, it is important enough to be written down. In fact this is a good way to ensure that you never slip up on something as small as getting a new pair of scissors to replace the old ones, or picking up dry cleaning when you are out. Just ensure that you group like activities together so that you can club them together. Outdoor stuff, indoor stuff, classroom based, in the market, these are just a few headings that you can use.

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Homeschool Holiday Book Exchange

The holidays are a time when homeschool classrooms are not quite as active as most homeschool teachers would like them to be. There are so many other holiday related errands to run, that the actual teaching manages to take a backspace for a while. During this time it would be a good idea to get your homeschool students involved in doing some extra reading on their own.

Pick a List of Approved Books

To ensure that your homeschool students are reading something worthwhile, sit down with them and pick out a list of books that you approve of and they are actually interested in reading. Now paste the list on the homeschool notice board and let them exchange these books from the library throughout the holiday season. You will need to do this individually with each child as most grade levels will require different level books to read.

Make Book Reports Mandatory

Have the homeschool students write a book report on every book that they read. It doesn’t matter if it’s just a graphic novel, if they read it, they need to make that book report. Give them about five questions that they can answer to create a good book report. This can include what is the story about, when does it take place, who are the main characters, what did you like or hate about the story and similar questions.

Add a Weekly Deadline

The holidays can be a very distracting time and even though the homeschool students may want to read the books, they may not be focused enough to do so. By placing a weekly deadline for a book report you will ensure that they at least get some books ready to review each week. It will keep them focused on a daily, bare minimum, pages to read goal.

Of course there will be weeks where no work actually gets done, and that’s okay as well. The idea of the holiday book exchange is to ensure that no brain drain takes place and basic skills are kept in practice even as the homeschool students take a break from regular school work.

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Encouraging Positive Emotions in Homeschool Students

A new year is a good time to start new things. Building a positive, can-do, attitude is a good place to start. Homeschool students are often protected fro the harsher realities of the world, and that makes them more positive people when they grow up. However, it is also possible that they may not be able to deal with the perpetual problems that the real world has a habit of throwing at you. This is why it is important for them to learn how to nurture and maintain positive emotions.

The Daily Journal

Have the homeschool students write down what they feel blessed for in their day. Maintaining an attitude of gratitude will help them stay focused on the positives of their life rather than complain about the negatives. Have them divide the writing into two parts, one what they give thanks for what they already have and the second where they give thanks in advance for things that they want to accomplish. It helps them maintain focus on what they want to achieve in a few days, weeks, and months from now.

Discuss Emotions

Most of us are taught to hold on tight to our feelings, to be stoic, and calm. Unknowingly we expect our children to do the same. If your homeschool student is throwing a tantrum, which is simply expressing frustration, help them vocalize the emotion better. Don’t just tell them to behave, ask them why they are feeling upset. What is the reason for their frustration? Then help them work through the emotion in a supportive manner so that they can deal with the actual, underlying issue.

Encourage Dreams

No one injures their eyesight by looking at the bright side of things. Let your homeschool student be encouraged to tell you what he wants to do. Not just five minutes later in the homeschool classroom, but also five years later when he’s out of school. Keep a positive attitude when they share their dreams. They may seem improbable to you, but they may be easily achievable by them at a later date as long as you give them the encouragement that they need now.

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New Year Resolutions for Homeschoolers

We all use New Year Resolutions as a reminder to improve the way we live. While the homeschool parent makes resolutions for the upcoming year, the homeschool students should also be encouraged to do so. Individual resolutions are easy to give up, but if you add the power of a group to them, you will be surprised at how fast they come true. Here are some resolutions that can be used by Homeschool families in the upcoming year.

Get Healthier As a Family

A preschooler can be asked to resolve to brush their teeth twice a day. An older child could use a resolution like drinking two cups of milk everyday. A teenager could make a new year resolution to ensure that they exercise half an hour each day. And the parent can add in healthy eating as their resolution. Think of all the health goals that you have for your family, turn them into resolutions for the new year. Here are some ideas

I will eat five helpings of fresh fruits and vegetables each day.

I will make new friends in the neighborhood.

Stop negative self talk which discourages me from achieving what I want to.

I will spend only one hour watching television each day.

I will ensure that I go for a jog each morning for an hour to stay fit.

I put away all my books and play material after I finish playing.

I will unplug myself from electronic gadgets and get out more in nature.

Make Sure You Write it Down and Display it

Resolutions work best when the individual writes them down and posts them in a place where they can be seen each day. The individuals can have their own sheets to display and there can be family resolution board in the homeschool classroom where these sheets can be posted. Add new resolutions as older ones get met. The idea is to keep striving for new goals towards improving the quality of your life. As the full family strives to be healthier and better it is easy to achieve new year resolutions.


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Charity and Homeschool Students

One of the most important lessons children need to learn is that they are so very fortunate and blessed. They have a family that loves them. They have a home to stay warm, and they have food on the table to fill their bellies. The holidays are a good time to educate them that not everyone has it as good as them.

Let your homeschool students get involved with a charity and do some giving. It doesn’t matter what they contribute, as long as they do. Here are some ideas to help foster the giving spirit in your homeschoolers.

# It could be an old toy, book, or clothes that don’t fit anymore given away to an orphanage.

# The children could be encouraged to make something, like edible treats or decorations which can be given to less fortunate families.

# A collection drive can be organized throughout the neighborhood and the children can be tasked with collecting all the items donated.

# They can help elderly neighbors with yard work and doing their basic grocery shopping.

# Children can be taken to an old age home and read out to the elderly there. They can even be encouraged to conduct an entertainment activity like a play or a dance.

# They can help rake leave, mow the lawn and pick up after a storm for families in the neighborhood that need the help.

# The children can volunteer at activities organized by the local church or community center by donating their valuable time.

The truth is that children learn from the example that their parents set far more than the lectures that they receive. This makes it important to make giving a family norm rather than just encouraging your homeschool students to be more charitable.

If the homeschool parent celebrates their birthday by sponsoring a meal at an orphanage, it teaches the children to care for the less fortunate rather than for material goodies. It can’t be a one off thing either, as what is seen regularly is what gets reinforced. So ensure that you harbor the giving spirit and your children will be sure to develop it as well.

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Homeschool Holiday Traditions

Many homeschool parents continue to teach through the holidays at a more laid back pace in the homeschool classroom. Even if there is no serious studies happening, the homeschool students continue to read and write and do a lot of craft projects related to the holidays. This ensures that when studies resume in earnest in the new year the students have suffered from little “brain drain”. Here are some traditions that homeschooling families have developed around the Christmas Holiday.

Cards for All Family Members

Homeschool students get to paint, draw, paste or do just about whatever art form they want to create Christmas Cards and greetings for all members of the family. These are exchanged on Christmas Eve. The excitement over individual cards which are kept secret from the intended recipient can help deal with the curiosity to look under the tree for gifts. Plus the card making can provide hours of artwork which can be logged into the homeschool schedule.

Baking Seasonal Treats

Cookies, cupcakes, walnut fudge, caramel candy, no matter what the treat is, the homeschool students learn how to make it. The recipes for most such treats are available online. Many times there are family recipes handed down and can be followed. Besides the actual skill of cooking, children also can be told about family history of the treat. A portion of the treats produced will be then packaged and delivered to a local charity. This can be logged in as a field trip by the homeschool students.

Clean Up and Decoration

No house looks complete without Christmas decorations. There are many family traditions related to putting up the tree and homeschoolers in particular take pride in homemade decorations. These can be taught in the homeschool classroom by producing one sample and allowing the children to come up with the remaining decorations. Older children will even be able to contribute with their own creative designing skills. Of course everyone gets together to deal with the cleaning of the house and then decorating the tree.

What is your homeschool Christmas tradition? If you don’t have one, now is a good time to think up of one.

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Services a Homeschool Teacher Can Monetize

Starting up a homeschool based business is easy if you have already got tons of experience teaching your own children as homeschool students. Here are some entrepreneurial ideas that you can think about when setting up a services based business for homeschool families.

Tutoring Other Students

Since you are already teaching your own children and are comfortable in a couple of subjects that other parents may find tough, you can offer to tutor other children in the neighborhood. Taking on a couple of paid students can make you feel good and improve the financial situation at home. You do not have to be limited to the physical confines of your neighborhood. Take on online students and do lessons on video chat.

Counseling Homeschool Families

You have a wealth of information for other homeschooling teachers who are just starting out. Book official counseling sessions with other homeschoolers to offer advice and inputs on how they can improve their study methods. Give parents tips on managing their time better and organizing things in advance for the homeschool classroom. You already do this stuff for free with friends, you can set it up as a paid service for strangers.

Specialize in Testing

Homeschool students are not tested in regular exams. Often parents are unsure about how well the children are learning their lessons and where they stand in a group of their peers. Learn how to administer standardized tests and then offer these to the parents of your homeschooling community. You can combine doing an invaluable service with making some money on the side. You will have to qualify to administer the tests from the relevant authorities first. Consider that a business investment.

Offer Specialized Classes

You may think speaking a foreign language is easy. Others may consider arts and crafts a walk in the park. Someone may have great skill in playing a musical instrument. Pick the class you know you are good at, and then offer to teach it to other homeschool students in the community. Again play to your strength so you know what you are offering is a good service.

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Why Successful Homeschool Teachers Make Successful Entrepreneurs

If you are a homeschool teacher sitting making lesson plans for the classes after the holidays and wondering when you will ever have time to do something for yourself, you need to read this. There is a lot of enterprising stuff that you can do while you continue to homeschool your children.

The Creative Problem Solver

Actually the fact that you are a successful homeschooler is an advantage when you decide to add on the title of entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship primarily deals with solving problems in a creative manner that allow you to make a profit. And homeschool teachers are old hats at creative problem resolutions.

The First Solution to Seek

Now think about the first problem when you want to turn into an entrepreneur. What will you sell? You need a product that you can easily ship out. A business that does not need a separate location but can be managed from home. Your start up costs have to be as low as possible and man hours should be flexible.

Make a List

Think of all the physical and digital products that you can sell. If you have a hobby that can create a product worth selling explore that. If you simply want to use the worksheets you generate day after day in your homeschool classroom as your product, just compile them all into an ebook. Explore your options and hone in on your product.

Set Up a Shop

No that does not mean that you need to get a physical shop, but it would be easier for your potential clients to know where to go to buy your product. An online store in a big commercial place like Amazon, Ebay or Etsy will work well for hobby products. Or a website of your own if you are selling homeschool resources. Add in a blog for people to follow.

The technical aspects are not too difficult to learn. There are a number of free online tutorials which teach you exactly how to set up a website and blog for the minimal cost. Now it’s up to you to make all the improvements you want to the site and sell your products.

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Exercise Your Homeschoolers to Improve Their Memory

A good memory is a powerful tool for life. Helping your homeschool student learn how to memorize things better is a task that most homeschool teachers take rather seriously. There are many techniques and short cuts that allow homeschooling parents to make their children learn quickly and well.

What’s New in Memory Research

There is constant research being conducted around the world on the brain, cognition and behavior.  Apparently learning and improving your memory is not just about excising the mind. It is also about ensuring that there is enough physical exercise. The study conducted at Radboud University’s Medical Center, in Nijmegen, the Netherlands found that the kind of activity you do after you have just been taught a new skill can go a long way in helping you remember it better.

Resting or Reactivating

In the study the participants were asked to memorize the location of 90 items on a computer screen. Then some were allowed to watch relaxing videos of nature and others were put on a cycle and made to peddle hard for thirty five minutes. For some participants the workout came immediately after the memorization session and for others the workout was performed four hours later. When tested for the same items on the computer screen two days later, it was the group which exercised that came out on top of those who watched relaxing videos.

The Time of Exercise Matters

However within the group of those made to do the workout on the cycle, the people who exercised four hours later had a tendency to do better than the ones who cycled right away. The researchers say that the part of the brain known as the hippocampus was activated when they exercised four hours later and helped the group improve their memory. While they are not yet sure why it happens, they are convinced that workouts and exercises are a great way to improve the memory of an individual. So the next time your homeschool student has finished studying something new, four hours later make sure he gets a good physical workout to help him remember it better!

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