Monday, December 14, 2009

Assignments & Record Keeping

Homeschooling: One of the things we've struggled the most with homeschooling is how to handle assignments and record keeping. We've managed to bumble through a variety of methods from "come see mom" for each thing which doesn't work all that well since I work full time and am not always available, to an online system that just wasn't flexible enough. We also have to find a solution that works for both kids who have very different needs and learning styles. One gets overwhelmed when he sees more than 5 assignments at a time. The other likes to see all her work for the full week. Both tend to jump around from doing one subject per day and then doing all their math for the whole week the next day. There's trade offs.

The online system we've been using since September let them see the assignments for EACH day (though not a week at a "glance") but working ahead really mucked up the system because then I had to keep track rather than the program and they had to remember to mark those assignments complete on future days. What resulted was a semi-chaotic state where I wasn't ever quite sure what they had done or not.

I spent this weekend developing yet another new "system". It starts with a binder with a special cover page. I was out of blue ink when I printed this one but I sort of like the "orange" look I got and let it go.

Next is a "week at a glance" of subject assignments with color coordinated tabs.

Under each colored tab are all the assignments for that subject for the full week. The column to the left is so they can date them and to the right they can fill in the grade if it's something they do online that grades itself (they still have to email or print the results though so I can verify what they wrote).

All of it is coordinated through this Numbers document (Excel for you PC users!). This is the master list of assignments for each subject for the year. I simply cut and paste them into the weekly charts and copy the grades back into this chart for safe keeping and a permanent record.

So far so good but it's only been ONE day!

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