Staying the Course - Part 2
- Monday, August 11, 2003
Once you are satisfied that continuing to homeschool is not in question, you need to reassess how you and your children are doing.
One method you might use to monitor how well-rounded your program is (and how well-prepared your students are for any possible direction) is to evaluate your program regularly. We did this at least twice a year in our homeschool, though we never had an official evaluation form. We regularly looked at our children's progress, their eventual goals, how the methods we were using were working, and how our homeschool was functioning as a whole.
We were never afraid to ditch a whole system or curriculum whenever we felt the need. There was even a year when in March we determined nothing was working, and we dropped everything. We were under a tremendous amount of family stress related to jobs and moving, and quite frankly, we couldn't handle anything more than the basics of life. One day, we sat down and announced that all scheduled bookwork was off for the rest of the year, and we unschooled. The children read, did crafts and cooking, watched educational programming on television, played games, and helped out with the farm and housework. It was the break everyone needed and did not slow their eventual progress one bit. Other times we have just needed to switch a math course for one child. That's the beauty of the homeschool, you are free to be flexible and pragmatic; you need only insure your own children learn, not a classroom of 30.
It might be useful for you to have some measurement tool to determine your overall progress toward the end goal of college and career. So, to that end, we offer a set of surveys for self-evaluation at different levels. The intent is to check yourself to be sure that if your child announces at some later date a drastic change in plans, your program will have been well-rounded enough to support their choices.
We suggest you fill out these surveys yourself, though you may obtain information from the student. Then, file the form in the child's file, look at it again in six months or a year, and file another updated form with it. You may feel free to reproduce these pages as needed. (This information may look familiar to some of you. It is in our Guidance Manual, and we now include it in the Parent's Guide to the Christian Homeschool Planner.)
Use these surveys to focus your attention on areas that are progressing well and those that need attention. Make adjustments in curriculum and subjects as the need arises. You may find a pattern emerge after filling out several of these forms over a period of time - we suggest at least twice a year - that will help you and your child determine a good route for the future.
Ages 8-11 Child's name __________ Date ______
We are satisfied/unsatisfied that he/she is desiring to follow God.
We see the following fruit of the Spirit emerging (Gal 5:22):
We need to work on the following disciplines:
What service opportunities have we encouraged?
Our spiritual goals for the following few months are to:
To accomplish our goals we need to focus on:
To accomplish our goals we need to change how we:
Special thoughts or comments:
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