I joined your site recently and have only received two of the 5 part e-mail. I am anxious to read on. You have been a wealth of information to me and have eased my mind tremendously. I have a seventh grader and am not a record keeper. Administrative tasks, just thinking about them, have me breaking out in hives. I'm gifted and creative in the area of teaching and putting together our course of action, but this is one important area where I need guidance. There was no messing around. I went straight to Staples and became a "binder queen". Thank you for the inspiration.
With much gratitude, Jodi in Michigan
It's great to meet you! Thanks for taking the time to introduce yourself! I'm so glad you are encouraged and motivated by the mini-course. I love helping homeschoolers!
I'm so glad you are starting in seventh grade. Seventh grade is the PERFECT time to start record keeping for high school. Usually it will just end up being "practice" but sometimes you'll find out later you actually need the records you keep. If you child is doing any high school level work, or if they graduate early, suddenly those "practice records" will become the real thing. I love that you'll be practicing, and by 9th grade you'll really develop a great record keeping system that works for you!
I just want to give one tidbit of warning, though. One of my clients is the most gifted and creative homeschool teachers I have ever met - and she happens to be a certified teacher as well. She wanted SO badly to be a binder queen! She bought the binder on the first day of school each year, and tried to give a label for each class. That was as far as she got. There was nothing in the binder at all - nothing. All her emotional energy was focused on her creative teaching (she really was AMAZING!) She had nothing left to give, and no energy left for keeping records. So it never actually happened.
When I was helping her with her records, we were still searching through a giant tub, still looking through books in her bookshelves. In all that, we never found a clue about one of the homeschool classes she taught; Latin. It wasn't until we were all done with the project, and I finally asked her what she was doing that weekend, when she mentioned they were going to a Latin competition. There was nothing in her (almost empty) binder, nothing in her tub, and nothing in her bookshelves to suggest Latin, and yet her daughter was competing at a national level!
Yes, trying to become a binder queen is important! But more important than the binder is actually KEEPING something. In one year, if you recognize that you haven't done anything with the binder, then find a system that WILL work for you. Keep the binder near your work area, and put a reminder where you keep your bills. Every time you pay a bill, find something to put into your notebook. For me, putting my finder into the "pay bills" section of my brain seemed to be the key to actually DOING it. Try to develop a system of putting things INTO the binder, something workable for you.
I'm here if you need me, Jodi! Thanks for the positive feedback.
I have an amazingly brilliant 6th grader who could very well be doing high school quality work in some areas (she tests at college freshman levels in many areas).
I'm an obsessive record keeper. I have the *exact* opposite problem of your client.
I don't even want to think about a high school transcript at this point. I will go absolutely crazy if I don't tell myself it can wait until my kid's freshman year.
Lee, I recall an article of yours somewhere about tubs, binders, and another method of record keeping, but now I can't seem to find it. Will you point me in the right direction, please?
Here is a link to the article:
If you are a Gold Care Club member, I'm going to have a video training course on record keeping posted on the website. It will be available on Feb 20th, when we rotate the training courses. I hope that helps!
Hi Lee, Organization is not easy for me and portable file boxes have been a life saver. I have a box for each child's school year with a hanging file for each subject plus a file for their curriculum plan and one for field trips. It is very quick to put any evidence of my children's school work in these files during the school year and it is easy to find it later as I write up their transcript. I love my file boxes! This sounds similar to what you suggest for record keeping. Thanks for your great advice. Katherine
Sometimes, I post something that really strikes the heart of my readers. An old post I had about measuring character qualities other than academic ones, was one of those posts.