This is article Number 6 in the Series, Essentials for Successful Homeschooling
This Essentials for Successful Homeschooling series is written for the benefit of anyone who wants guidance to implement a successful homeschooling program. These articles will be numbered, and should be read in order. The content for each article is taken from the Enrollment Application and processes for students in Family Tree Private School, a school for homeschooling families. Family Tree Private School supports a Biblical foundation for life and learning, and enrollment is open to all.
“THE QUALITY OF AN ASSIGNMENT IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN QUANTITY.”
It is recommended that students be taught to set goals and be responsible for filling out a goal chart to represent these goals. Each student shall keep his or her goal chart/assignment chart in a neat fashion. The chart should be checked for accuracy after each goal is reached. At the end of each day, have students fill out the goal chart for the following day to reflect the next days assignments and activities. This is done with the parents’ guidance. Students projecting the next day’s goals (“Goal Setting”) is a good exercise.
1. Pencils (or erasable pens) are to be used for assignments. NEATNESS COUNTS! Writing that cannot be read must be re-done.
2. No assignments may leave the student office or learning area without permission from the Teacher. Assignments must be carried in a protective carrier when taken from the learning center. The teacher’s permission is required to vary from assignments.
3. Trail of an assignment. – When classes begin, students will be assigned a minimum of five courses of study. These courses are: Reading (Word Building or Literature) for levels K – 9, English, Math, Social Studies, and Science. Courses will be supplemented by electives as needed. Two years of Bible at the high school level is required. Once a student has received school assignments, they work on daily goals in a consistent, progressive manner. The student should be asked if he or she wants to review the assignment objectives and re-learn any sections before quizzes, or tests (or “Self-Tests” when using “Pace” books for example). If a quiz or test is passed with an 80% score or better, new work can be assigned.
4. Students will be required to repeat an assignment for the following reasons: a. Cheating b. Loss or damage to assignment. c. Inadequate comprehension revealed by a quiz, or sloppy or incomplete work d. Failed final Test. Repeated assignments (or workbooks) should be completed more rapidly than the first time. For children who are capable of earning it, it might be helpful to have them pay for repeat assignments as an incentive not to have repeat the same behavior that caused them to have to repeat it in the first place. They may “pay” for it in the form of using play-time, doing extra chores, etc.
5. Basic Literature assignments are an integral part of education as they focus on biographies and/or historical events which shape a child’s perspective on life and clarify God’s role in their lives. Basic
Literature Assignments can be enhanced by composition or book report assignments at the Teacher’s discretion.
Length of Essays or Book Reports in word-count:
Grade Level 4-5 200-word composition
Grade Level 6-8 400-word composition
Grade Level 9&up 600-words or more composition
When a person assumes greater responsibility in life, he earns greater privileges. This principle is taught through a graduated incentive system, designated by the teacher. Privileges may be earned by meeting certain responsibilities. These responsibilities may involve: assignment completion, maintaining an academic balance (this is defined as accomplishing about the same amount of work in every subject area), limits on the amount of detention time or timeout served the previous week, Scripture memorization, oral reports and service to others. Privileges that may be obtained by fulfilling these responsibilities include extra break time, engaging in extracurricular activities or reading approved literature once goals are completed, being out of seat without permission and being out of learning center on approved projects without permission. Of course, the greater the responsibility completed, the greater the privilege. Students who desire privileges and believe they have fulfilled their responsibilities should request this on the Friday preceding their week of privileges. Those applying for higher levels of privilege can perform some type of Christian service that is to be verified by a responsible adult who can verify service. Students should be encouraged to earn more and more privileges by assuming more and more responsibility. Remember: Privileges are incentives designed to promote learning achievement.