It has been a while since I posted about Little Miss’ homeschooling. I wanted to share the way she uses workboxes with Heart of Dakota curriculum. The inspiration behind it came from Natalie’s blog, Distractible Me. I found my workbox tags at her blog. (Thanks Natalie!)
Little Miss has her own visual schedule. I have a small pocket chart that has a storage pocket along the bottom. I place her workbox tags in the clear pockets and as she completes each assignment, she places the tag into the storage pocket. I love this!
We have a timer set for about 35 minutes, based on the idea that public school has class periods of about 40 minutes. This gives her ample time to complete the given assignment. If she dawdles and time runs out, she sets aside the assignment to be completed later. If she finished early, she is allowed to use the remaining time to play outdoors, watch a video or play a game on her tablet, or some other activity of her choice. When the timer beeps, she restarts it and begins her next assignment.
I have an activity center set up that I change out twice during the school day. One time the activities are science related, the next they may be geography, art, or file folder games. She has 2 “center” tags in her visual schedule. When she reaches one of these, she chooses one of the 2-3 activities at the center. If she finishes early, she can choose another one to complete also.
She works through her schedule very well. After completing the last assignment on her schedule, she finishes any work that was not completed in the allotted time. This will encourage her to work more efficiently so that work is done on time.
She is enjoying this routine. If she completes and assignment early, she is helping Pookie with his activities. This has been a minor issue we have had. She sees the activities he is doing and they always look more fun than her own work. It is hard on a young child to understand sometimes that a younger sibling (especially one that has special needs issues) has to learn in a different way. In Pookie’s case, he learns best through hands-on and visually. His lessons are always through an interactive approach. To a young child, that may look far more inviting than doing a worksheet or writing practice. So, I allow her to help Pookie with his activities once her own is completed. This is eliminating any jealousy that may come up.
At the end of the day, we are playing a board game together or doing something else that is our Momma/Daughter time. I am finding that by doing this, along with allowing her to help with Pookie’s lessons, really is benefitting us all. She is actively participating in her brother’s education as well as having the attention from Momma. One issue that I always try to keep in mind is that I never make her feel like she is being left out. When you have a special needs child who requires much more attention and aid, it is easy to overlook the amount of time spent with the other siblings. I never want her to feel like my attention is always focused on her brother. So, I make a point of including her as much as possible as well as having our private time each day.