Friday, April 20, 2012

Weeks 34 & 35: War and Peace

Last week, which I will dub WAR, was a complete and total failure. I struggled to keep the kids focused, and I struggled in keeping my temper. Many tantrums were had, both by the kids and ME! Both my mother and my husband had to sit down with me and tell me to just chill out. I admit, I don't handle stress well, and last week, I was feeling super overwhelmed. I had a bajillion things on my to-do list as well as all the stuff running through my head. Put homeschooling and taking care of four children on top of that as well as doing my own homework, and I snapped.

So I had to organize myself. I realized just how out of sorts I was and horribly disorganized. The kids NEED to do their work. They can't half-ass it. I need to do my work, too. I can't half-ass it, either. I'm not speaking of just my homework, either. I need to be the best at being a teacher, a mother, and a wife, as well. All of us need our PEACE. That is what I had focused to achieve this week, and we did it!

the girls chose their letter stickers
to make their names
Digging through our supplies, I found a few things that I was saving to use for next school year but decided now is a better time than any to dig into it, even if we are closing in on the last few legs of the school year. Grabbing some sheets of stickers, name plates, and a weekly to-do list that was actually for me, but I voted against it in this time of need, the girls made their own "I Did My Homework" charts.

The plan was simple. I need them to do one assignment from each subject every day. Some subjects they have already finished and they recieve a sticker at the completion of the section to place on a certificate. I don't know why I didn't do this more often, but now we do. They recieve a sticker at the completion of that one assignment, a sticker for each subject. On Monday, Lily had 12 subjects left while Iris had 5. On Friday, Lily only had 6, and Iris had 3. They both recieved all the stickers. At the end of our lessons, they would recieve one large sticker for completing all the subjects. They could not recieve a large sticker unless all of the small stickers were won. At the end of the week they recieved a certificate of completion for that week.

Rose gets in on the sticker action
I'm not one for bribery. I hate bribing. It doesn't teach responsiblity. I don't want them to think that just because they did something, I'll give them something special. I want to teach them that they have to be responsible and by doing so they EARN something special. This reward system is the best form of subtle bribery. :) They need to earn the certificate throughout the week. After earning so many certificates, they can then trade them in for something special. Even the two-year-old wanted a piece of the fun. She refused to be satisfied unless she made her own nameplate and was able to recieve stickers.
The week is done!
I'm considering "pricing" special treats. Like a trip to the park equals one certificate. A trip to the indoor playground or the zoo (both an hour away) is five certificates, etc. I think I may even price a field trip or two. Whenever we get into bats and caves and things, I could easily get them to do their work if they earn a trip to Inner Space Cavern. So many things I can charge!! I'm excited to see what they plan on "buying" now.

Here they are at the end of the week, super happy to have finished the week!

1 comment:

  1. Great idea :) Charlie gets a small sticker on EVERY worksheet she does. She can't move on to the next page until she finishes one, so the sticker motivation works great for her. Science isn't an issue with us because both girls love it...however, I think I'm going to have to do a bit more sticker emphasis on tracing letters. For some reason Charlie really wants to learn to read, but she doesn't want to write...unless it's the letter A or H, lol. Keep up the great work, I love reading your blog :) XOXOXOX