Friday, 22 August 2014

School Schedule and documentation

Since returning to the the states and because my oldest is in middle school, I am becoming more and more obsessed with how I document our schooling.  Fortunately the state we live in is fairly relaxed and only requires that I keep track of hours.  However since High school is around the corner I felt it necessary to try to improve my documentation strategies.

I am using two different documentation strategies as I am trying to increase Firedrakes independence in completing her school work.  I have looked at many different planners online but decided to just go with the basic.  I am not a month to month or even week to week planner, so I needed something I could write out each day and yet still give her independence.
I found a cheap planner at Walmart and it is divided into monthly sections on the calendar section I write in field trips, and the list of assignments I have due that week from Firedrake.  I also keep track of the school hours whether we worked a full day or a half day.

Each morning I write out exactly what assignments are due for the day.  As they are completed Firedrake checks them off. She also writes in the length of her day another way to keep track of our hours. 

MarioFan is not able to work independently yet and still needs me to assist him with school work as he gets distracted easily.  So we still work side by side on many tasks.  As he completes his assignments I write it down in a notebook along with the hours we attended school.

Another tool that I am using is the Olly homeschool tracker which keeps track of grades and assignments it is probably an overkill in documentation but I tend to go overboard on things:)
I like that this program gives me the option of using letter grades or just pass or fail options.  I don't grade everything the kids do at this time.  Only certain subjects get a letter grade.

Lastly for both kids I keep an expandable file folder for every month of the school year (we school year round) and I add papers, assignments and others things that I want to keep as part of our school records. Again I probably keep too many things but should anyone ever asked what the kids are doing I will have proof and plenty of documentation!!!

Lastly I have tentatively put together a weekly schedule.  I always hesitate to do this as I don't like to be very structured in exactly what we do each day.  I do allow the kids the flexibility to change things around.  Also with the many field trips and travels we do I sometimes concentrate on one subject for longer periods while skipping others for as long as needed.  Ultimately we always seem to get most of our "school" done.  Currently our heaviest school day will be Mondays and Wednesday once the coop classes begin in mid Sept.  I have made Friday kind of a catch up day.  Again this schedule is very flexible, somedays I may add more things to the day it I know we have a field trip scheduled later in the week in order to stay on schedule.

So that is my crazy system.  I am sure others out there have far superior systems but this works for us and gives me a fair idea of the goals and what we should be accomplishing during the week!  As always I look more at the bigger picture of what we accomplished by the end of the school year.  Anything not completed during the main school year gets carried over into the summer when we do a lighter load of school.  


  1. I have never heard of Olly homeschool tracker and am going to go check it out. I used to use HST+, but that doesn't run on Macs unless you pay for their subscription, which I'm not willing to do. Currently, I have all my lesson plans done in Word, which doesn't leave me 100% happy. It's good to get in the habit of keeping detailed records with Firedrake. That way it will be easy for you to recreate anything you need for her high school transcript. Colleges want course descriptions, reading lists, etc. After my eldest "graduated" I learned a big lesson to keep better track of things as we go along, because I forgot so much from his freshman and sophomore year.

  2. I don't see Minecraft on your schedule ;) !!!

  3. It looks to me like you are pretty organized. Of course, with all the fun adventures you have on trips you would need to have it all put together the way that works best for you. Good luck on the new year and blessings for all!