I’ve just returned from a wonderful vacation, if you are wondering why you haven’t heard from me in a few weeks. First we went to the FPEA (Florida Parent Educator’s Association) Convention, then an exciting trip to NYC, Cape Cod, and Boston, which I will write about next time. Right now I want to talk about homeschool conventions and what to do after you return home with your head full of advice and free tote bag full of brochures.
First thing I do is sort through those brochures, samples and handouts and toss anything in which I have no interest right into the recycling bin. Next I sort the remaining paper into two piles: 1. Act on it and 2. Ponder it. “Ponder it” gets tacked to the very large bulletin board in my school room, to be reviewed in a couple of weeks. “Act on it” gets further researched, price compared, prayed over, and perhaps discussed with hubby or kids, then it gets acted on – or tossed.
My husband’s job (self designated) is to do a quick internet search to see if whatever item is available in the exhibit hall is cheaper on-line. Surprisingly, the answer is usually, no! Vendors often give their best deals at convention, even if it is just free shipping. So, if I have not already ordered, I order the things I planned to purchase later.
Next I take a look at my notes taken during the convention. I try to keep them all in one notebook, but that doesn’t always happen. Usually I have a co-op planning meeting scheduled, so I start flipping through the new books to see what will be relevant to share or prepare for the meeting. I like to give myself a few scheduled days, at least one for pure co-op planning and another one for planning all of the subjects that my do at home. That means a few hours in a comfortable chair with a notebook for listing goals, resources, and reading lists. I make my kids do things like determining how many pages of a book they will need to complete each week in order to finish the textbook within a year, then I record the information in my planning notebook. More on planning later, though.
I have to make room for the new book and resources. That means giving away, selling, or packing up for storage books and texts that I will not use this coming year. Gotta love those non-consumable books that can be used for subsequent children! Once the new books are neatly arranged on the bookshelves or in bins, I turn to my summer planning. Summer is that brief, glorious window when few other commitments exist and we are free to indulge in out of the box learning, subjects we can’t make time for during the year (like chess), and catching up on what we fell behind in (always math).
I hope you are enjoying a glorious summer, too!
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