What I found most difficult about workboxing was having to fill the boxes every night. Those of you who read my blog regularly know that I love to teach/lesson plan/do anything school-related. However, filling the boxes was taking over an hour each night.
Maybe that's because I'm an overachiever and do too much.
Maybe that's because I'm getting old and don't move as fast as I used to.
Maybe that's just because workboxing takes that much work.
I don't know for sure but I do know that I could not keep up with it all.
Then I read this at the HSBA Post and decided to make some changes. Rhonda's idea of using Homeschool Tracker is great, but I don't have a subscription or the money to buy one right now. So, I did what homeschoolers do best and improvised.
I have nine boxes for each boy. I have designated one box for each of the following: math, writing, reading/journaling, geography, memory work, handwriting/copy work/coloring, other language arts (spelling, reading skills, etc.), project, extra-curricular.
These are Wilbur's workboxes.
Here are Orville's boxes.
On Saturdays, I place all the materials needed for the upcoming week's assignments in each box. I include activities like computer work and musical instrument practice. Sometimes a box will be filled with materials for a project. Sometimes it will contain a workbook or a game. Sometimes it will simply contain a card that says, "Complete two levels of math practice on mathletics.com each day this week." It takes me about three hours to put it all together which is still a lot of work. However, it makes the week run much more smoothly, and I have the energy for it on Saturdays, unlike at 8 p.m. each week night.
Here is a better view of Wilbur's boxes. He has a card box that contains a game, a DVD to watch, workboooks, copywork, and a cd with one activity in the bottom row.
I place the index card with instructions for each day on top of the materials.
Here is an example card:
Occasionally, I write "see me" if the instructions are too complicated to write out or if I know I will need to assist or give a test.
After a couple of weeks, I also stopped using the schedule strip. I kept putting the same numbers on it in the same order every day, so it seemed superfluous. I let the boys decide the order they will complete their work. This means if they want to do box 6 first, then so be it. Just so long as it all gets done, right?
When each boy has completed a box, he removes the tag from the front of it (I have them attached to the front of the boxes with Velcro) and places it inside the box. When all his tags are removed, he asks me to check his work. If everything is complete, he is done for the day.
Those are our changes. I'm curious, though. How many of you use workboxes and what works best for you? Please share. I have started a conversation in my Blog Frog community.