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Thread: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

  1. #1
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    Default Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    I've noticed that a lot of us are organizing/clearing out/gearing up for the onset of school. I'd love to see us share some of our favorite tips to help new AND experienced mommas get their MP homeschooling days off to a fantastic start. No need to reinvent the wheel if another momma has discovered the solution to your issues.

    Ideas to Share -- thoughts to get your wheels turning

    How do you organize your TM's?
    If you don't have an organized homeschooling room, how do you set up?
    Organizing Readalouds?
    Flashcards?


    Brilliant Ideas I've seen, heard, or utilized in our own home

    Jessica shared a great idea of buying an extra Curriculum Guide (CG) for your student and let them check things off as they go.

    She also uses folder labels to quickly identify read alouds, science supplements, etc.

    In my own home, I use this folding crate to keep all the TMs and CGs in one place - it's portable so I can take it room to room if need be.
    Flashcards get a hole punched in the corner, and then placed on a binder ring. I can hang them on command hooks, or on the sides of the teacher box crate.


    Ideas Needed


    I have one of those calendar chart things -- you know, change the numbers each month, etc. I need to know how/where to hang it so that my children leave it the heck alone. I had it on a hanging rack, but the littles seem to think that it's a vehicle to push around or climb.

    Looking forward to all the wonderful ideas to be shared here!
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    I have a small bookcase with a shelf for each child for books that are used on a regular basis. This includes texts, student books and teacher guides.

    Each child has an IKEA Raskog cart. Each morning I load their independent work on the top shelf. As they finish, they move it to the middle shelf. The bottom shelf holds their flashcards. It has wheels so it is easily moved from room to room.
    IKEA Raskog Cart

    All books that are not being used regularly are on large bookshelves sorted by subject and course.
    2017-2018:
    DD 13 | 8A | Foerster, MPOA student (Latin, Lit, CS & Comp)
    DS 11 | 5M | Singapore, AAS
    DD 9 | 4A | Singapore, AAS

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by jenniferjb View Post
    I have a small bookcase with a shelf for each child for books that are used on a regular basis. This includes texts, student books and teacher guides.

    Each child has an IKEA Raskog cart. Each morning I load their independent work on the top shelf. As they finish, they move it to the middle shelf. The bottom shelf holds their flashcards. It has wheels so it is easily moved from room to room.
    IKEA Raskog Cart

    All books that are not being used regularly are on large bookshelves sorted by subject and course.
    That thing is AWESOME. As a nurse, I have to imagine it filled with supplies for dressing changes.

    I'm filing that idea away for when my small fry are older. We used to have a rolling cart with drawers for the children's work. It worked AWESOMELY, until Baby #5 started pulling up. She'd dismantle it in a matter of moments.
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    An idea I got from Jessica is to print out all of your tests and quizzes from the PDF download at the beginning of the year and put them into a 3-ring binder, using tabbed page dividers to separate each subject. When a test rolls around, remove it from the binder and, once it's graded, put it back in. At the end of the year, you have a full binder with all of your child's test in one spot (and you can toss the workbook if you choose, as the tests serve as "proof" your child completed the course).

    I picked up the size L and XL bins from the Container Store (when they were on sale, of course!) to use for the kids' books. Each child has his/her own labeled bin (the size L fits 3rd, 4th and 5th grade materials nicely - you'll need the XL for Kindergarten!) and keeps his/her books in it. When they need a workbook, they pull it out. Once finished, it goes back into the bin. They slide easily under chairs, have handy carrying handles and are easy to transport from room to room.

    I pull read-alouds we'll need for the year from our library shelves and put them into the "read aloud" bin in my cabinet. This way, when we're ready for the next read-aloud, I know where to find it. Once we've read it, it will go back onto the bookshelf. (I get most of our read-alouds and literature selections from the local HPB, thrift store and/or alibris. Ask Jessica - our local library is pitiful when it comes to classic books!) Same for enrichment books - they're in the appropriate child's bin in the cabinet so that I can pull it easily when needed. They go back up on the shelf when we're finished.

    Let's talk about food, shall we? I found early on that I had a tough time concentrating on my job as a teacher when I was distracted by thoughts of what I'd make for dinner. (Like most of you, I also moonlight as a short-order cook in my own kitchen...and I often pick up some work as a chauffer and scheduling secretary for my family, as well.)
    I started doing fewer runs to the grocery store, opting instead for a huge grocery pickup each month through Azure Standard. (I hit the grocery store once or twice for produce, but that's about it anymore.) The bottom drawer of my 'fridge is filled with things like individual yogurt cups, apples, cheese cubes, etc. that the kids can grab for breakfast and snacks (I am cheap and buy my cheese in blocks. I cube it myself and put it into a Ziploc bag). Sometimes I'll make overnight oatmeal so that the kids can enjoy that hot or cold the next morning without much effort on my part (mornings are hard!).
    For dinner, I make a weekly weekly plan for meals. Every Friday night, I go through the freezer and make note of what we have, then put together a menu (making liberal use of the crock pot and making other meals ahead and freezing them). It takes a little bit of work, but in the long run, it saves so much time.
    Lunches are simple - this is where leftovers or frozen burritos (purchased in bulk) come in. Every other morning, while the kids are eating breakfast and getting ready, I throw together some sourdough to rise while we're in school. By mid-afternoon, it's ready to go into the pan and by the time dinner's done, it's ready for the oven to bake while I'm cleaning the kitchen.

    Overall, I've found that making a daily list of tasks to accomplish and/or a rough schedule really helps to keep us organized and on track. As I find other things that need to be done, I'll add them to the list - it keeps me from being distracted by little things that need to be done but aren't necessarily a priority. Especially in the beginning, having a rough schedule and a master list (in the form of our CMs and my things-to-do-outside-of-school list) is a lifesaver...then we fall naturally into a routine. That is...until the relatives show up for an impromptu visit or all of the kids get sick. *weary laugh*
    Mary

    DD12 - 6M + CLRC Latin IV
    DS10 - 4A
    DD6 - K

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Hi Ladies,

    Head on over to our special corner of the internet, the special needs section to see a current thread on "burnout". Scroll down and read Anita's long list of suggestions for both organizing and avoiding burnout. Thanks for starting this thread, Mary. I need all the tips and ideas I can get!

    Susan P

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Oops! Dianna started the thread. Sorry about that. Thankful to glean from you ladies. I have been an organizationally-challenged mom for way too long.

    Susan P

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by SPearson View Post
    Oops! Dianna started the thread. Sorry about that. Thankful to glean from you ladies. I have been an organizationally-challenged mom for way too long.

    Susan P
    No problem. I'll head over and copy/paste Anita's info here, too.
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    From our sweet Anita .....


    *program the coffee maker the night before -- I do this in the afternoon or mid morning sometimes, just to make sure it gets done. There's nothing like smelling that coffee wafting up from downstairs to make me happy in the morning. It's like someone did something nice for me and quietly said "Good morning, sweetheart; wake up, I made you some coffee, just the way you like it..." I don't have many moments like that in a given day, so it's a nice wake-up -- especially since by the time I get downstairs I already have a baby strapped to my chest, two boys as my shadow, a hungry husband who needs to be out the door by 630, and a daughter who is not a morning person
    * clean the kitchen and run the dishwasher every night before bed, no matter what. If the dishes back up, my whole house just goes to hell -- ditto kitty litter
    * the hour after breakfast is my time to answer emails, fold laundry, nurse the baby, watch the news, prep for school -- whatever. Set a timer. An hour is never as long as I think it is. When the timer goes off, move on to the next part of your day.
    * school starts at 8AM -- period. We aren't late for doctor's appointments or Taekwondo, we're not late for school
    * the first 30 minutes to an hour of school are the hardest. Keep going. The kids will fall in line.
    * take a short snack break, and an hour for lunch. This is the only time I'm allowed to check email or texts.
    *do something physical as a family every day -- we walk the dog around our neighborhood, usually before school. It gets lots of energy out before its time to sit and concentrate
    * after lunch, resume school; finish school and have QUIET TIME (my favorite time of day!) Everyone goes to their respective rooms and either rests, reads or plays quietly. I honestly don't care what they do -- HA! -- as long as it's not destructive and they stay in their rooms. This gives me time to lie down with the baby, do housework, answer emails, attend to paperwork, prep dinner, or just sit, drink tea and watch Investigation Discovery. It's MY respite from being MOM. I can just be Anita for an hour or two (though I have to do it with a baby now, but this season will pass).
    * cut out FaceBook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc etc etc. They take up so much time... It's unreal. Literally and figuratively.
    * when Quiet Time is over, give them something constructive and fun to do -- outside time, a craft, a bath (my kids still love the tub), errands, a sports or art class, etc.
    * early dinner, early bedtime -- dinner is between 530-630 (on Taekwondo nights it can't be helped that dinner is a bit later) bedtime is no later than 730. This gives my husband and me time to finish up our work, clean up, decompress, spend time together and get to bed early. It's not exciting, but it keeps things running.
    *pick a chapter of Scripture and read, meditate and pray over it for five minutes in the morning, afternoon and evening. This is a non-negotiable
    * go to the half price sale at Yankee Candles and buy a few big ones. Burn one in the kitchen during the day. Very relaxing
    * paper plates and plastic cutlery for lunch
    * eMeals meal planning system -- they deliver meal plans for your family to you along with a shopping list for $10 a month. Saves a TON of planning time. We are on the dinner only, crock-pot, clean eating, family plan. I don't have to think about what to cook. I just buy it and cook it. They have all kinds of plans to fit your preferences.
    * when the kids are at class and the only child I have is the newborn, I do something relaxing for myself. Last week I got a spa pedicure at the nail salon in the same shopping center as the Taekwondo studio. It was fabulous. (Even if I did have to nurse in the chair!)
    * for special date nights, we stay in. I'll cook a special meal for my husband and he picks the movie. Not fancy, but with special needs kids, it works.
    * my husband takes the older children and gives me a few hours of silence in my own home -- I honestly use this time to just do my normal routine things. But it's QUIET. That, to me, is better than an hour long massage. What's your happy thing? Go do it while someone else watches the kids
    * parish book club once per month -- it's full of other moms who are nursing while we talk, are pregnant or have been in both situations. We meet at a different home every month. We chat about the book of the month, eat nibbles, drink wine and laugh. It's awesome. Find this. Go out of your way to find this. Or make it if it doesn't exist. You deserve it.
    * do some personal exercise every day. Lock your door if you have to. Set the timer and get it done -- push ups, sit-ups, jumping jacks, whatever. Make sure you take time to stretch. It's great for nerves and relaxation.
    * write down your wins every day. It's EASY to get overwhelmed and negative. If you keep track of what you are proud about and thankful for every day, you can see where the silver lining is. You can also write down barriers to your progress and what you can do to prepare for and tackle tomorrow. THANK GOD every night for your blessings -- even the hard ones.
    * if it's not possible to get away for an extended period, get away when you can. Even short breaks are helpful.
    * if you get out of whack, pick up where you should be in the schedule and start again. You will be surprised at how well you can do this and redeem a day that did not seem like it would work
    * "Success is going from failure to failure with undiminished enthusiasm." ~ Winston Churchill
    Don't let this season get you down. Keep getting up, like the Chinese proverb says. Focus your energy on believing you can succeed and don't let your failures define you. Self-respect, self-care, gratitude, being present in the moment, thinking of your life as "now" not "someday" are all strategies you can employ to WIN and REST, knowing you are working towards your goal and God is providing sweetness.
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    This past year I started using the recollection cube storage organizers from michaels for the workbooks. I found that putting the books on normal shelves caused them to flop and that irritated me. The cubes, which are really desk shelves for storing paper, are flipped on their side and the shelves are used as dividers. It is the three/four shelf cube organizers. (Not sure if the still sell it, but other stores may sell something comparable). They are also colorful. Each child has their own cube and contains enough space (with some extra room), for full cores. Although I am not sure if the high school texts would fit, as we aren't there yet! It could potentially work for large families because the cubes are stackable. The dividers also keep the books from flopping around. The only book which was difficult to fit was the d'aulaires myths. I keep my TMs on the book shelf, close to where I usually stand/sit to teach.
    Catherine

    Dd - 11 - full core 6A
    Dd - 9 - full core 4A

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by jenniferjb View Post
    I have a small bookcase with a shelf for each child for books that are used on a regular basis. This includes texts, student books and teacher guides.

    Each child has an IKEA Raskog cart. Each morning I load their independent work on the top shelf. As they finish, they move it to the middle shelf. The bottom shelf holds their flashcards. It has wheels so it is easily moved from room to room.
    IKEA Raskog Cart

    All books that are not being used regularly are on large bookshelves sorted by subject and course.
    This. Yes. image.jpg

    The cart on the left has all our phonics and memory verse flashcards, small books and Primary Phonics readers on the top shelf and then each child's workbooks from left to right in reading, writing and arithmetic (FSR, Copybook, R&S). Shelf 2 is extra R&S materials -- the next workbook in the series, speed drills, flash cards and two big three ring binders to hold our R&S worksheets (x2). Shelf 3 is various workbooks and flash cards for Fall/use as needed.

    The cart on the right is all our enrichment. Shelf one a binder with my lesson plans for the core and a binder for enrichment, including religious ed, as well as our read alouds for the week. Shelf two is religious materials. Shelf three is all our enrichment poetry and coloring books.

    The carts live in the dining room when we are not doing school and get wheeled in to the kitchen for school. Easy peasy. And the best thing I ever bought for school. Ever. No -- EVER.

    EDIT: Awwww. Y'all are sweet. I didn't even see that when I posted, I just jumped on Jennifer's cart idea and ran. You made me blush.XOXOXOXOXO
    Last edited by Anita; 07-12-2016 at 12:59 PM.
    "Do not let the past disturb you -- just leave everything in the Sacred Heart of Jesus and begin again with joy."
    ~ St Mother Teresa of Calcutta

    "Pray, hope, and don't worry."
    ~ St Padre Pio

    Boy Wonder: 9, Simply Classical, Level 2
    Girl Friday: 7, MP1
    Silly Cowboy: 5, JrK drop out
    Pink Baby Bunting: 1, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Hey guys! I wanted to echo that the curriculum guides are great for giving to the kids as their own planners. I do not buy extra ones, I just let them have full reign of the ones we have for the year. I treat them as consumables, so I do have to get new ones each year, but I do not have a "theirs" copy and a "my" copy. That would be confusing to us. We just have one copy each, and I use the phrase, "Go get me your planner" all.day.long.

    I use the basket idea that MP does. If you have seen an MP curriculum display, you know what I mean. I even got a steal on some "pretty" baskets that were on clearance. So my three youngest have their entire core in a basket on my sideboard in the dining room. Then my older kids have bookshelves in their bedrooms/closets that have their schoolbooks and a variety of free-reading books. I also have one bookshelf of just school-related books: enrichment, read-alouds, reference, etc. That shelf I guard, because to me it is worth it to have nice books for school. There are more shelves that are full of books that get taken everywhere, but the one I keep nice is in the corner, away from traffic.

    So we have a dining room that doubles as our school room. Only the big kids have to move their books from one place to another. And they do that by subject anyway. The little kids have set places for everything.

    My off-year books get lined up in double rows in the cupboard portion of my sideboard. We even installed child locks on those doors to keep little ones out. Being limited to just MP school stuff has helped tremendously with needing to find storage solutions. Took me a couple years to finally get rid of the rest, but once I did, I have not missed any of it! (And neither has my house!)

    We also have a dedicated toy room on our main level, which I love. Someday it may be an office, but for homeschooling it is much more helpful to have a playroom. It has a tent, shelves of accessible toys, flap and board books, puzzles, and a dry erase board. Very often it has a bin from the basement that gets rotated through too (train, doll clothes, hot wheels, play food, etc). It helps to keep little ones occupied while still feeling a part of things because they are not far away.

    Trying to think of any others....I will say I played around a lot with various set ups from year to year - using desks vs table, sending kids upstairs vs keeping us together, who gets to go first, etc. And I can happily say that I think when you play around with things enough, you can hit on what is right for your family. We have not really changed anything for the last two years. And even when we move in a month we will set it up the same in the new house (has basically the same rooms). So if previous set ups have been stressful and frustrating, keep tweaking it until you find the right balance and set up. It is possible, and you can reach peace with it, which was actually a surprise for me (and a relief to my dh!)

    AMDG,
    Sarah
    2017-2018: Seventh Year with MP
    DD 16
    DS 14
    DD 12
    DD 10
    DD 8
    DD ~6
    DD ~4
    +DS, 2-21-16+
    And new little peanut due 1/27/18 <3

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Being limited to just MP school stuff has helped tremendously with needing to find storage solutions. Took me a couple years to finally get rid of the rest, but once I did, I have not missed any of it! (And neither has my house!)
    I'm working toward this. Since we started from the beginning of our schooling journey with MP, I don't have much that needs to be pared down, but I still want to make a thoroughgoing of our bookshelves, bins and cabinets and toss what we truly don't need. The biggest space-hogs are things like lap books, visual aids and art supplies. All nice to have... If you ever actually get around to using them. I really need to get brutal and start chucking stuff into a Goodwill pile. Thankfully, it's all in one place -- my closet. It'll bother me more and more until I finally snap one day and gut the whole thing. (At which point I'm sure I'll be back here asking if anyone is interested in a gently used ________.)
    "Do not let the past disturb you -- just leave everything in the Sacred Heart of Jesus and begin again with joy."
    ~ St Mother Teresa of Calcutta

    "Pray, hope, and don't worry."
    ~ St Padre Pio

    Boy Wonder: 9, Simply Classical, Level 2
    Girl Friday: 7, MP1
    Silly Cowboy: 5, JrK drop out
    Pink Baby Bunting: 1, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by KF2000 View Post
    I do not buy extra ones, I just let them have full reign of the ones we have for the year. I treat them as consumables, so I do have to get new ones each year, but I do not have a "theirs" copy and a "my" copy. That would be confusing to us. We just have one copy each, and I use the phrase, "Go get me your planner" all.day.long.

    I use the basket idea that MP does.
    This is what I do as well--one curriculum manual per kid and we share it. Each kid has their own school bin. The TM's are stored on/in my desk. The beautiful MP published ones go on my desk in a Super Sorter and the outrageous Rod and Staff hardbacks go in a file drawer in my desk. All books-to-be-used-this-year-but-not-yet are stashed on a shelf atop a buffet in the living/school room so I don't lose them. I do not jest.
    Festina lentē,
    Jessica P

    Fall 2017
    DS: MPOA 4FLatin, 8A // DD: 6A // DD: 3A // DS: K

    Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, www.nashvillelatinschool.com

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    We just moved our school room last weekend to a different room in our house. Ahhhh. I love a fresh start!

    I am an art supply junkie..because art is my "thang". So that is where the bulk of our stuff lies.
    My little three, 1st, and 2 preschoolers have a 2 shelf book case for their workbooks and such. Their supplies are in a small hanging cup that attaches to the side of their desk, which they remove and bring to the table when we do our morning time and group work.

    My big two have the rolling drawer carts with a subject in each drawer. I used to use a basket for each but their books were getting torn up. My daughter likes to organize her cart in the morning according to what she wants to do first (or what needs to be done that day) then she just works down the line.

    Current TM's are in plastic magazine files. 1 for each kid (usually the R&S TM stays out). That way I can just pull 1 bin and set it on the table next to me while I'm working with each kid. TM's not being used stored on a shelf above my desk.

    Flashcards: each subject in a single silverware organizer, separated with tiny binder clips according to chapter. And put up very very high out of reach of my little tornados.

    In past years, we used the curriculum guides like mentioned above. However, this year is such a mish- mash of subjects/grade levels/online classes for everyone, we are working off individual plans. So..I have a master planner that I am using to briefly jot down what lesson for each subject each kid is on for that week, so I can record hours and keep up with my independent workers. My big two are in charge of grabbing the individual lesson plans and filling in their planner each week. So far, it's working..but it's only the second week and the first time ever working this way. However, Im already grumbling about the lack of my beautiful-all-in-one-easy to use MP grade level curriculum guide. Those guides are Priceless!! My kids aren't complaining..yet.

    Like others have mentioned..it is so super helpful to have the quizzes, tests, etc..all Printed and ready to go before school starts. Or at least a few weeks in advance. Nothing like a motivation derailment when I have an anxious kid waiting on me to print a test.

    This may seem silly but after so many disruptions of pencil/colored pencil sharpening..I have my kids take 5 minutes and sharpen EVERYTHING they may possibly use that day BEFORE we start school. And at the end of the day, they have to wipe down their area, empty trash, put all books and papers back properly before they can leave. For a while we all got in the habit of ending school and just walking away from the chaos of the day because we had a separate space out of the way. Which only led to clean up craziness in the morning.

    I *try* to have the audio pulled up if we are listening to a music selection, quizlet and math facts ready to go on computer, Latin recitation CDs in or near the CD player and same with DVDs. Sometimes I make it to school room before the kids. Often not. I may start assigning some of these tasks to my bigs.

    I love learning how everyone else makes it work for their family! Thanks for sharing! Some of my ideas I have graciously stole from this forum
    Katie

    2017/2018 Fifth year homeschooling, Fourth with MP
    DS 13: MP 8, E. Greek MPOA: Henle, Logic II, Alg I, MS Comp II
    DD 10: MP 5A, E. Greek
    DD 7: Mix of SC2, MP1
    Twin DD's 4: MP K

    "God doesn't look at how much we do, but with how much love we do it" -St. Teresa of Calcutta

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by Anita View Post
    I'm working toward this. Since we started from the beginning of our schooling journey with MP, I don't have much that needs to be pared down, but I still want to make a thoroughgoing of our bookshelves, bins and cabinets and toss what we truly don't need. The biggest space-hogs are things like lap books, visual aids and art supplies. All nice to have... If you ever actually get around to using them. I really need to get brutal and start chucking stuff into a Goodwill pile. Thankfully, it's all in one place -- my closet. It'll bother me more and more until I finally snap one day and gut the whole thing. (At which point I'm sure I'll be back here asking if anyone is interested in a gently used ________.)
    Girl. If I never see another lap book, it will be too soon.

    Let me take you on an exploration of my ADD fueled morning.


    Inspired by Jessica, I decide to gather all of my K read alouds in one place. This of course, led to a pit stop on Thriftbooks.com.

    "Hmm. I THINK I have that Jan Brett book, but where?"

    Foray into the basement, into the 2nd/3rd/4th/5th stash of books. Find the Christmas books -- discover some junky boards books that needed to go, then two copies of The Wild Christmas Reindeer, but no Twelve Days of Christmas. Quickly amass a box of books and such for the Goodwill, and manage to find colored labels for the books. Hooray!

    Back upstairs, and while Rachel was taking her MPOA class, I started in on my closet/stackable drawers. 90 minutes later, emerged with Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, and yet more things to drop off at the Goodwill.
    Found my 2nd grade art cards, in various stages of lamination.

    (I never said I was organized!)

    My quandry now ..... I have some books that I purchased to go along with Five in a Row -- I was enamored of that program for the summer after Daniel was born. I'm going to sell that curriculum, but I'm waffling on selling some of the books that I purchased to go with it. A FEW overlap with MP, but not all. I need permission to pass them along.
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Posts
    1,295

    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by DiannaKennedy View Post
    Girl. If I never see another lap book, it will be too soon.

    Let me take you on an exploration of my ADD fueled morning.


    Inspired by Jessica, I decide to gather all of my K read alouds in one place. This of course, led to a pit stop on Thriftbooks.com.

    "Hmm. I THINK I have that Jan Brett book, but where?"

    Foray into the basement, into the 2nd/3rd/4th/5th stash of books. Find the Christmas books -- discover some junky boards books that needed to go, then two copies of The Wild Christmas Reindeer, but no Twelve Days of Christmas. Quickly amass a box of books and such for the Goodwill, and manage to find colored labels for the books. Hooray!

    Back upstairs, and while Rachel was taking her MPOA class, I started in on my closet/stackable drawers. 90 minutes later, emerged with Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, and yet more things to drop off at the Goodwill.
    Found my 2nd grade art cards, in various stages of lamination.

    (I never said I was organized!)

    My quandry now ..... I have some books that I purchased to go along with Five in a Row -- I was enamored of that program for the summer after Daniel was born. I'm going to sell that curriculum, but I'm waffling on selling some of the books that I purchased to go with it. A FEW overlap with MP, but not all. I need permission to pass them along.
    Permission GRANTED! You are so awesome, Dianna. Your posts make me happy.
    "Do not let the past disturb you -- just leave everything in the Sacred Heart of Jesus and begin again with joy."
    ~ St Mother Teresa of Calcutta

    "Pray, hope, and don't worry."
    ~ St Padre Pio

    Boy Wonder: 9, Simply Classical, Level 2
    Girl Friday: 7, MP1
    Silly Cowboy: 5, JrK drop out
    Pink Baby Bunting: 1, Reverse-Engineering Specialist

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Goodlettsville, TN
    Posts
    3,126

    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by DiannaKennedy View Post
    Girl. If I never see another lap book, it will be too soon.


    My quandry now ..... I have some books that I purchased to go along with Five in a Row -- I was enamored of that program for the summer after Daniel was born. I'm going to sell that curriculum, but I'm waffling on selling some of the books that I purchased to go with it. A FEW overlap with MP, but not all. I need permission to pass them along.
    Raising my hand as one homeschooler who couldn't even identify a lap book if it fell off the shelf and into my hands. True confession.

    For your FIAR precious books that you don't want to goodwill, could you and your kids use them as gifts for smaller friends throughout the year? Just a thought.
    Festina lentē,
    Jessica P

    Fall 2017
    DS: MPOA 4FLatin, 8A // DD: 6A // DD: 3A // DS: K

    Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, www.nashvillelatinschool.com

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    160

    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by DiannaKennedy View Post

    My quandry now ..... I have some books that I purchased to go along with Five in a Row -- I was enamored of that program for the summer after Daniel was born. I'm going to sell that curriculum, but I'm waffling on selling some of the books that I purchased to go with it. A FEW overlap with MP, but not all. I need permission to pass them along.
    Are these books you enjoy sharing with your kids? I never used FIAR but from the pieces I have seen they use really good books. If I enjoyed them I wouldn't think twice about keeping them. We have a lot of books that aren't necessarily MP, but ones I enjoy and we read during other times (or they read to themselves). Just a thought. I'm a confessed book hoarder, so you may not want my enabling
    ~Michelle

    Mom to 3
    DD9 (MP 4)
    DS7 (MP 3)
    DS (born 3-26-16)

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,086

    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by 3Blessings View Post
    Are these books you enjoy sharing with your kids? I never used FIAR but from the pieces I have seen they use really good books. If I enjoyed them I wouldn't think twice about keeping them. We have a lot of books that aren't necessarily MP, but ones I enjoy and we read during other times (or they read to themselves). Just a thought. I'm a confessed book hoarder, so you may not want my enabling
    Well ----- I don't know yet.

    (hangs head in shame)

    They've been in the top of my closet, along with the FIAR manuals. I'll stick them out on the shelves and see what happens.

    Sigh. Book hoarder. I know. In my house, the first things to go are the crappy books. Sadly, many of them arrive in my house as gifts. Which doubles the difficulty. Ugh.
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,086

    Default Re: Let's Share Our Best Practical Set-Up/Scheduling/Organizing Tips!

    Quote Originally Posted by pickandgrin View Post
    This is what I do as well--one curriculum manual per kid and we share it. Each kid has their own school bin. The TM's are stored on/in my desk. The beautiful MP published ones go on my desk in a Super Sorter and the outrageous Rod and Staff hardbacks go in a file drawer in my desk. All books-to-be-used-this-year-but-not-yet are stashed on a shelf atop a buffet in the living/school room so I don't lose them. I do not jest.
    Well --- I totally misunderstood the concept! OK -- now I get it. Phew. #ditz
    DD #1 : 22, college SENIOR, studying for LSAT, graduating in Dec
    DD #2 : 11 MP 6A, Cottage School, MPOA, and Delectare
    DS #3 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DS #4 : 9, 2/3 grade, new Cottage School student
    DD #5: 5, Kindergarten at HLS
    DS #6: 3, cutest caboose on the loose
    http://www.thekennedyadventures.com

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