Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Making Life Easier: Get Your Own

One of the new rules we have this school year is that each of the four oldest children are responsible for preparing and cleaning up after their own breakfasts and lunches.  I only serve the 3 youngest (and the 6 year old will probably graduate to self-sufficiency in the next few months) and the person scheduled to do that meal's dishes only has to do their own plus the two youngest children's.  It's quite a bit less work for everyone which takes less time away from the school day.

It's making my life easier.  Let me know if it does the same for you.  Or, give me some ideas of what has made your life easier.

Monday, August 16, 2010

First Day of School

Today was the big day.  I must say, it was the best first day we have had in a couple of years.  I don't remember ever being so nervous about the school year beginning, but I felt about as panicked as a new teacher in a classroom of 30 students! 

Until last night.  Last night I finally felt organized enough to start this year off on the right foot.  I still have much of the yearly lesson planning to do, but I'm well under-way.  I have the whole week completed, so imminent catastrophes have been avoided. 

We took a family trip out to the stores last night to buy school supplies.  That is something I realized I never really did last year.  We just kind of used the old stuff and did a quick job of clearing off the old materials to make way for the new.  I made sure this year to get the kids new pencils, erasers, crayons, notebooks, etc., whether they needed them or not.  They'll use it all eventually and new things give them a positive sense of anticipation.  With all of their school shelves cleaned up and brand new books setting on them, they could not wait to get under-way with school.  My 8th grader had two subjects completed before 8:00 this morning!  Always a great start!

I listened to kids read, instructed the younger ones with their math & English, and the kindergartner with her letters until about 1:30 this afternoon.  Other than feeling a little numb, I enjoyed the peacefulness of it all.

No complaining, no arguing, no lost pencils, and all work done before 2:00.  Whether or not that will happen ever again during the course of this year, I don't know.  But it made for an excellent first day of school!

Hope yours goes as well.  Would love to hear about it!

Monday, August 9, 2010

We're Starting School Next Week...

...and I was feeling a bit guilty about cheating my kids out of the last 4 or 5 weeks of summer.  Until I found out that schools in the South are beginning this week.


Not to mention, my kids only have 4-day weeks and we like to finish school by the beginning of June.  Am I not an awesome mother?  *wink, wink*

I had great visions of having my entire year's lesson planning finished by now. Let's just say that guilt-free feeling didn't last long.

How about you?  Are you beginning school soon or haven't you even begun thinking about it?