Thursday, October 22, 2009

Oct22_MagicFolder

We are flying by the seat of our pants again. Despite my best efforts, I am kind of unable to implement a solid system at home. I liked the idea of workbox system, but despite having boxes of stuff in our kitchen/family room, Anna rarely looks at their content. Of course, it would be different if I had energy to change them every week like dedicated homeschoolers do. But I am not a Oct22_Worksheets_SM homeschooler, so I use “a magic folder” instead. It has 7 pockets, and I refill them as needed:

Oct20_Stickers_SM

I don’t tell Anna what to choose out of her magic folder. It’s always available to her, and when she feels like it, she looks through its contents and pulls out things to do. Her favorites change based on her moods (though everything involving stickers is usually a big hit), and she doesn’t do it every day. I stopped doing my own themes and usually use some printables to complement her preschool theme of the week. I think both of us enjoy the element of surprise – she likes to see what’s inside, and I like to see what she chooses to do. I suppose at some point I will offer more “guidance” on selection, but right now I think it’s best when she can just follow her heart desires.

15 comments:

johanna said...

this is a nice idea i might try enticing my son with a MAGIC folder!!

Susana said...

This is a really good idea Natalie! I like it alot. You are very creative:-)!!

The Harris Family said...

This is such a great idea. I also like the workbox system but we don't really have room for it so I haven't tried it yet. I think we may try your approach instead. It seems more practical right now.

Christy said...

This is a great idea.

Adriana said...

I haven't figured out a system for us either. I want to leave more things out for D so that he can just choose what he wants, but little brother is in a very destructive phase. The folder may work because I can easily put it out of reach. Thanks for the idea!

MaryAnne said...

I love your magic folder idea! Great ideas of what to keep in it, too. Now to get my act together and make one of these for Emma...

inneedofchocolate said...

I love your system and it looks like "dedicated" homeschooling to me. Our house is too small for workboxes and I'm just not good at remembering to change out boxes of items. I keep meaning to get some trays to put out activities on trays in the morning but I haven't gotten that going yet.

Our Little Family said...

I think this is great! I, too, am not a homeschooler and while the workboxes really appeal to me, I think a system like yours is more practical for our situation. I'm glad it's working out for the two of you, too!

Sheena said...

What a perfect idea for those of us who aren't homeschoolers, like the idea of the workbox system, but don't have room or the motivation to do it. I've been trying to think of ways of getting activities out for M&M to do that she can get to on her own. So simple, yet so effective.

Julie said...

I'm in a similar situation to you, so I completely understand. This is a great idea. I may have to set up something like this. Right now we're really not organized at all.

Ticia said...

I like that idea. We sort of use the workbox system, I have a 3 drawer box that is for scrapbook papers and I put a few things in it at a time.
But, your idea is a good idea for a smaller scale.

whisperingwhispers said...

I always used a folder for my other children's school work, we didn't call it a magic folder, but I like that idea.

Selena's work is all in her handbook, and my head. I prepare what we are going to do sometimes the night before and sometimes that morning before we start, though we do have a folder like yours to keep my masters and her finished work in.

Selena becomes over whelmed if we put to much at her at one time, she does better if I introduce what I expect her to do for the day, then just let her go for it.

Heaven's forbid if she gets into her bins as everything gets scattered all over and nothing gets accomplished.

Love your idea as I truly believe a child will learn more when they are given a selection then free to learn what they are interested in.

onelittleroom.com said...

I feel like we're sort of in limbo as well. We have workboxes set up, but they tend to be more "busy work" type of tasks to keep Tornado Boy busy while I prep the next thing for him to do. I have to have something to keep him busy or he starts getting into everything.

Nicole {tired, need sleep} said...

I really like the idea of your "magic folder" (and I love the name, heh). I've been trying to take time to observe M more lately and see what kinds of activities he is drawn too. It always involves something more than mere worksheet-type activity. While he likes to circle, write, draw, and wipe away (dry-erase markers for worksheets in page protectors), what he is really drawn to is the more physical activities - playing in the sensory tub, cutting, stickers, ... lots of things that involve fine motor skills. Tongs, tweezers, glass pebbles on letters, etc, are some more things off the top of my head. So I'm going to try to find ways to incorporate more of this into his activity shelves. Of course these things wouldn't fit in your folder, but I'm wondering if you've noticed anything similar with Anna - ?? Maybe it's the age. Or maybe it is a boy / girl thing, I don't know. Just an observation. Sorry so long - oops! :)

Eva said...

wow very creative :) I too struggle with implementing a system! I really like the idea of having a folder of activities that my daughter could just go to and choose things.. I want to try this!