Sunday, August 12, 2007

Preparing for a New School Year

"Check the date!" That should be my new motto. I was visiting the blog of Maureen of Trinity Prep School, and I clicked on a link "The Seven Habits of Highly Effective New School Years". I saw there was a meme going on, and thought I'd join in. I followed her links to a lot of other articles on the same topic, some by a few of my favorite bloggers. After writing mine up, I went back to get her link to give you, and guess what? I was trying to attend last year's party! I hadn't realized at first that she was linking to an article she wrote - and a meme she invited people to participate in - approximately a year ago.

Well, her article is still interesting and timely, and the links I clicked on that other people had done are still interesting and timely. So you can still check it out. And I'm still going to share what I wrote, even if I'm really, really late to the party.

In order to join in, I decided to skim through The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People again (a book which I highly recommend), and apply its principles to homeschooling. So this may be life-changing for me. It certainly got me thinking. Thanks, Maureen.

By the way, for anyone who doesn’t know, I’m going to be homeschooling two high schoolers - the first time in 23 years that I haven’t had anyone younger than high school. (Just in case I might miss having children, I have been asked to take a preschool class at our co-op. But the following resolutions are about my high school homeschool.)

1) I will choose to be “present” and “in the moment”. While the boys are working on schoolwork, I will do housekeeping, grading, or writing; but avoid email, telephone, and running to the mailbox - anything that might cause me a major emotional distraction. My motto will be EPA: emotionally present and available (hmm, you might refrain from telling my kids this).
2 I’ll sit down this coming week to re-evaluate and re-define our mission statement.
3) I’ll set general goals for each subject for each student in order to get through all the material by the end of the year. But then I will have a weekly goal-setting session with each son to set up and adjust the lesson plan on a weekly basis.
4) I will try to make regular deposits into the Emotional Bank Accounts of my husband and children, taking into consideration their strongest love languages.
5) I will discuss such subjects as religion, literature and history, trying to really listen to what my kids have to say.
6) We will try to be a team, working out shared computer time, enjoying lunch time, and working toward making this a memorable last year before the youngest becomes the only student homeschooling.
7) I’ll plan time for myself: for prayer, exercise, learning, and social activity.


Love2Learn Mom said...

I love it. It's a nice little way to bring people back to a great meme once again. :)

Anonymous said...

Sounds wonderful..

Maureen said...

Margaret Mary,

I needed to read all the "old meme" entries to get myself focused for this upcoming year. Your entry is a beautiful addition. I've added a link from the original entry a year ago to yours here.

This is my first year with a high school student, so I especially appreciated your timely contribution to the "Seven Habits" project.

Thank you AGAIN!

Margaret Mary Myers said...

Thank you for all the positive comments. Now I need to get to work on that mission statement. :) I've been still catching up from last year. We always start school the day after Labor Day. Thank you all for your inspiration with your positive attitudes.