The end of year is a signal for many homeschool households to either administer a standardized test or have their portfolio reviewed. But, how about an evaluation done by the parents of the previous school year itself?
I strongly suggest setting aside time to evaluate EACH child with the following list:
- What worked well academically?
- What didn’t work well academically?
- What activities worked well?
- Which activities didn’t work well?
- Name some high points of the year.
- Name some low points or stressors
- In what areas does this child excel?
- In what areas does this child need to improve?
Now, go through the list and try to define “why” for questions 1-4.
Next, is there anything in questions 2 or 4 that can be changed? (Make a note of it!)
For question 5, rejoice! Can these experiences be repeated next year?
Were these once in a lifetime happenings or repeat issues for question 6? Are there ways to turn these into positives or learning experiences? If not, will they continue into the next year?
Again, rejoice for question 7! As you note this child’s strengths, can you see the hand of God shaping and molding him/her? Pray and ask God how you can begin (or continue) to move them along in their giftings.
Considering question 8. While every child has a weakness, it’s up to the parent to discern the extent a particular weakness needs to be worked on and plot that particular course of action. Not every child will use quantum physics, but they should be able to balance their checkbook, use day to day computations and be wise stewards. Not every child will be a Pulitzer writer, but they should be able to adequately express themselves in writing.
After this, meet with each child individually and discuss. Ask them for their input, but ultimately, you the parent and the Lord’s leading are the final say in next year’s course of study.
Evaluating the past year is a great tool in setting the course for the upcoming school year and something that each household should take to heart and consider doing.
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