If you’re like me, the midpoint of your school year can sneak up on you like a 3-year-old while you’re trying to go to the bathroom. I can’t believe we are already half way through our homeschool year! With that in mind, here are 5 tips for performing a mid-year homeschool checkup to make sure you’re on track and have a solid plan for the rest of the year.
1. Review the First Half of the Year
Now is a great time to review any goals you created at the beginning of the year and compare your progress (and gut feel) against them. If you’re using Homeschool Tracker for record keeping you can also tidy up any lose ends or enter any grades you may have left off.
2. Create a Report Card or Transcript
If you split your year into quarters or semesters, now would be a good time to create a report card or transcript. These are helpful documents that you can review with your students and keep on file for future use. They can also give you a macro view of how your student is doing across multiple subjects. Homeschool Tracker can use your records to generate these reports with the click of a button. If you’re not using Homeschool Tracker, we have a handy free transcript template that you can download.
3. Set Goals for the Rest of the Year
Ever notice how the gym is packed in January? All of those New Year’s resolutions are being played out around you. Why not write up some goals for your homeschool for the next few months? We love using the S-M-A-R-T framework when creating goals. SMART stands for:
This framework is great for academic or productivity goals like “Read at a 10th grade level by April 1st and read 12 novels”. However, this framework is not so great for other goals like “Learn how to manage conflict better” or “Practice good eating habits”. The important thing is to establish goals, write them down, and share them with your family so that everyone is on the same page and has clear expectations. I would also recommend having your students write their own goals and compare them to yours.
4. Adjust Your Plans Accordingly
Were your goals from the beginning of the year too ambitious? Not ambitious enough? Either way, now is a good time to make changes to better achieve your goals over the next few months. This may mean changing up your weekly routine, swapping out curriculum, or adjusting your lesson plans in Homeschool Tracker.
It’s important to remain flexible while still making meaningful progress toward our goals.
5. Schedule a Conference With Your Students
You don’t have to homeschool in isolation! Sit down and review all of this with your students - go over progress, report cards, goals, and plans. Bringing your students into the conversation will help to encourage them while alleviating the pressure of carrying all of this squarely on your shoulders.
Review the first half of the year with your students and celebrate successes. If tough conversations need to happen, do it! Ask for feedback from your students:
- What can I do to improve my teaching?
- Do I do a good job of staying organized and on track?
- Do you feel like I am communicating well with you?
Get feedback and work together. After all, this is a family affair!
If you're looking for a solid tool to help with your organization, record-keeping and lesson planning, why not give Homeschool Tracker a try? We've helped over 150,000 homeschooling families since 2002.
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