Skip to main content

What Should I Do With All These Books?? ~ Part 2

If you read "Part 1" of this blog series, then you might remember my first 3 tips:

~ Sort Books As You Finish Them

~ Update Your Older Student's Transcripts Right Away

~ Make a List of Books You Have and Books You Want/Need

As you move closer and closer to the end of this academic year, and as spring begins to become summer, it becomes increasingly difficult to focus on planning for next year. Now, maybe I am the only homeschool mom who has this problem, and all the rest of you amazing women are able to plan for next year while folding laundry and cooking a gourmet dinner and the sounds of spring outside the kitchen window don't create a distraction for you. If that's the case, I'm probably blogging to myself today :)

Since spring is here and summer is right on it's heels, I really do have to force myself to focus on wrapping things up in a tidy fashion so that I'm not in a panic when August arrives. Okay, I am Type A, I admit it. I do like all things to be done in a fitting and orderly fashion. I don't do well in the midst of chaos and if it weren't for my amazing husband, I would live a life void of spontenaity. But I STILL have to force myself to focus on the big picture at the tail end of each school year. Type A or not, I am just plain tired by the time May rolls around. Here are my next 3 tips for finishing well in preparation for next year:

Shop the Spring Sales and Conventions
You know that list of books you've been working on? Now is the perfect time to use it! Many curriculum companies have fantastic sales during the spring months. And homeschool convention season is in full swing! Take your list with you as you walk through the vendor hall at your state convention. Reference your list as you shop online or browse catalogs - see what's new and what fits your "Want/Need" list. I have 2 simple rules when it comes to curriculum shopping: #1 ~ When shopping online, look around for the best price OVERALL (consider shipping fees, and buy as much as you can from each website). #2 ~ When shopping at a homeschool convention, buy directly from the vendor whenever possible (homeschoolers work hard creating products that work well for homeschooling families - it's kind of tacky to look over their product & then walk 3 yards away to buy it for $3 less...)

Choose to Honestly Evaluate Your Science and Math Programs Now!
Okay, you may be wondering why I feel you need to honestly evaluate math and science curriculum now. We tend to look back and remember things a bit differently than they really were (ever heard the phrase "grandma's cookies"?). By honestly evaluating your math and science programs at the end of each school year, you give your children the best possible learning advantage come next fall. What did you love about science this year? What did your kids love? And what did you NOT love? Ask your kids what they disliked. Do the same with your math curriculum. If you use different programs with each child, then honestly evaluate each one. Write down your honest opinion (and that of your children), set it aside, pray about it for a few days, and then read over it again. Let the Lord speak to you about your curriculum choices (if you are willing to listen, He is willing to guide you). Then move forward - sell what you no longer want to use, update your "Want/Need" curriculum list, and put away any books you will keep for future use. Remember, this truly is the ideal time for an honest evaluation!

Get Rid of the "Junk"
Rather than putting all the eraser-less pencils and dried out glue sticks into the school supply drawer and leaving it for the fall, go ahead and toss the "junk" right now. If you know for a fact that you are not going to use the last bit of tacky glue in the bottle, throw it out. That notebook with 4 pages left in it? Go ahead and toss it. It's a simple but profound truth that you will have a better start to your school year if you have a clean work space & a few new supplies (like notebooks, pencils, and crayons). Take a few minutes now to get rid of the "junk" and you will save yourself the headache of doing it later on when you are ready to begin the new school year.

Those are my 3 tips for today - I'm not certain how many "parts" this series will contain when it's all said and done, but I am pretty sure I have a few more tips to share before I'm out of words :)

Make the most of this season in your homeschool because by doing that, you are paving the way for an excellent new school year come fall!

Day 92 done :)

Jan L. Burt


Popular Posts

A Homeschool Mom's Devotional (# 1)

Colossians 4:17 tells the reader to "be sure to carry out the work the Lord gave you".

How can this be applied to the enormously busy lifestyle of a homeschool mom?

First of all, we must always remember that the Word of God has the answer for our every need and we can trust fully in God to use His Word to lead us, guide us, correct us, and bless us.

Keeping that in mind, let's consider what this verse is saying. We are told to carry out, or complete, the work the Lord has given us. We are wives, mothers, homeschoolers. Those three BIG job descriptions come immediately to mind when I think of homeschooling mothers. Applying God's Word to our life means carrying out our work as wives, as mothers, and as homeschoolers.

When I am exhausted from another long day (or long week, long month, long year, etc.) I still must honor the Lord by blessing my husband. Maybe that means having a hot meal on the table when he arrives home from work. Perhaps your husband would prefer a…

My Preferred Bible Reading Plan

We all know that reading our Bibles is a key part of living a healthy life as a follower of Jesus. But busy homeschool moms may, at times, struggle to know what part of the Bible to read on any given day.

Some people read the Bible through, Genesis to Revelation, and when they finish simply start over. Others have reading plans that follow along with the sermons their pastor is currently preaching. And yet others find themselves "stuck in the Psalms", since they're not quite sure what to read.

I'm not going to tell you how many chapters a day you should read, or that you need to do exactly what I do. I'm just going to share what has worked for me, and hopefully encourage you to get into the Word using some type of plan ~ because every homeschool mom knows what happens to our plans when we fail to create a plan, right?!

I use a prayer and Bible reading guide called "Prayer Point", published by Samaritan's Purse. About every 8 weeks, I receive a new i…

Do You Homeschool? Then You Need to Read This Article!

Whether you have been homeschooling for a month, a year, or a decade, you've inevitably faced the "questions". Questions about socialization, college, athletics, driver's ed, high-school biology, etc. etc. etc. and so on.....

It seems as if homeschoolers are ripe for questions from day one; but the flip side seems to be that there really is no flip side. We are expected to patiently answer any and all questions, smiling politely and pretending we've never heard this line of questioning before. But when we try to ask a few questions about, say, public schools as a whole or the issue of private schools being used as a last-ditch landing spot for students expelled from public school, well...ahem...we're pretty much told to keep quiet. No one wants to hear our questions, and often times no one really wants to hear our answers to their questions. They just kind of want us to....go....away.

I'm not planning on going away any time soon. And neither are my five …

Everything by Mary DeMuth

The book Everything by Mary DeMuth became a "keeper" for me almost as soon as I began reading. Mary sugarcoats nothing in her attempt to make Jesus' gospel what it rightly is ~ and as you probably guessed from the title of her book, it rightly is about everything.

Eighteen chapters, three sections, one-hundred and ninety-eight pages...if you take the time to delve into them you will grow exponentially in your walk with the Lord. In Everything Mary calls us out, calls us higher, and admonishes us with honesty and openness. Sharing from her heart and relying heavily on the truth that is God's Word, she sets things straight. There aren't just one or two things about this book that I have taken to heart; and there aren't just a couple of quotes I could share here. The book in it's entirety is a game-changer!

Please buy this book, read this book, apply the truths in this book to your life, and let the Lord become your everything!

HERE is a direct link to Every…

TOS Crew Product Review ~ Reading Eggs

Reading Eggs is an online learning program for pre, early and emergent readers (ages 3 to 7 primarily, with a unique online area for readers ages 7 to 12).

As my children are all older, this is primarily an informational review, kind of like "looking back" to consider how this program might have worked for our family several years ago. However, we did spend quite a bit of time using the online are for older readers, called "Reading Eggspress" - I will mention both throughout the review.

The Reading Eggs website is divided into three categories: First Steps for 3-4 years; Ready for School for 5-year-olds; Fun Practice Makes Perfect for 6-7 years. The ages are really more like guidelines, so your child could easily move through all the levels at their own pace. And when ready, they could move on to the lessons available at Reading Eggspress.

I feel this would have been a fun, easy to use resource for my children in their early years as readers. There are loads of option…