Keeping a Schedule for the summer

After two days of serious frustration with my 3 oldest kids, Sam and I decided to have a family meeting and present a schedule for the summer.  It’s pretty funny, because we didn’t really discuss the schedule before our meeting…and maybe it’s just the way my personality is, but I just love that he made it up and that was that.  It seemed great to me…so today is our first day on the schedule.  Of course, I have to be a little flexible with it, and it does allow for some flexibility, which is good.  I am telling you that this is the way to go.  Today I had so much less complaining and much better attitudes.  There was no argueing when it was time for rest time, and I love this 45 minutes I get all to myself.

So here it is:

So here is our tentative schedule…
Up and dressed at 8:00.
Breakfast, 8:15
Clean up and then play outside.
Snack, 10:15
Homework, Journal, Reading and Chores
Lunch, 1 kid assigned to help prepare & clean up each day on rotating schedule, 12:00 – taking Kate Gosselin’s idea of a picnic lunch when we can…LESS CLEAN UP
1:15 Rest time – ON BEDS, sleeping or reading or listening to music
2:00-4:00 Free time which may include playing, art projects, extra jobs, DS. – Quiet Zones in effect while baby is napping.

4:00 – clean up from playing, get the house ready for Sam to come home
6:00ish – Dinner
7:30 – Baths and bedtime routine
9:00 bed (8:00 for baby)

I love that there is a lot of play time, so we could go do something fun or run errands, like this morning, after we were cleaned up from breakfast, all they had to do was get their shoes on and we were out the door to go to the credit union and got there even before they opened.  It wasn’t so fun sitting there for almost an hour in one of the offices while we opened accounts for each of the kids.  We gave them money for their grades on their report cards, and their school participates in a program with the CU where they will be able to deposit $ into savings at school.  It wasn’t much fun, but they weren’t too bad, and afterwards we went to Target and got popcorn combos or slushies and everyone got a pair of flip flops for the summer.  When we got home everyone wrote in their journals and then we got lunch ready.  I thought it was a good morning (even though I was a little stressed at the CU).

I have printed up the schedule and posted it on the refrigerator so they can keep me on it, too.

I probably should mention that we have used the stoplight discipline system all year.  This is something that they do at school, and we continue it at home.  Bad choices mean consequences and it goes like this, 1 warning, then yellow light, another warning, then red light, The kids try to stay on Green light all day.  Red light gets spankings, Green lights all week earn rewards.  This goes for anywhere we are.  So I made each kid an envelope with a hole cut out, and papers inside (red, green and yellow) to change accordingly if needed.

So that’s about it, oh and I am having the kids track on a calendar their days and which light they are on.  They will color in the square appropriately for how they end the day.  That’s how we will track for the rewards.

And I am also going to try making up some clothespins to clip on the bottom of their envelopes for positive behaviors they accomplish each day.  It should be a nice visual reminder of their responsibilities…I am hoping.  And these are easy enough to take down and take along with us when we go to the fairs and camp this summer.  I will try to post a picture later for you.

Rest time is over…see ya

School’s Out…It’s officially summer.

I finished up work last week.  Spent a couple of nights at school till 1AM trying to get my room cleaned up.  I finished up on Friday afternoon, but I have to take in some paperwork & stuff tomorrow morning.

This weekend was a whirlwind of cleaning and entertaining…Max’s birthday party.  It was fun.  It took a lot to clean up the house.  It was so trashed – because I have basically done very little to maintain it the last 3 weeks.  Next year I will think about hiring someone to help me clean those last 3 weeks…I just need a little help with that since my attention has to be so focused on work.

Today, I felt like I had a chance to relax and breathe.  This afternoon I took a short nap.  I cleaned up stuff around the house, did some laundry…spent time with the kids.  I had them write in their journals, Max and Karson practiced their sight words and we all played a rhyming game that had to be ended because the boys were trying to rhyme male anatomy and bodily functions.  What is up with boys this age?  I seriously think that is all they think about!

Savannah, Max and Karson are going to Kids Kamp this week at Trinity Wesleyan Church.  Jasmin is going to the babysitter’s.  I am looking forward to having some time to myself.  Though, I do have to spend a couple hours at the dentist tomorrow…and I am not looking forward to that AT ALL.

I have a lot I want to do this summer.

  • work on stuff for school next year…both art and kindergarten (I’m doing the same thing, in case you didn’t know.)
  • get the Pirate show ready which includes repainting, painting and decorating the inside, and getting the costumes ready to go.
  • paint…um…this is low on my priorities…but I would like to paint the living room, the front entry way and the back mud room…and maybe do some touch-ups in other rooms, and then there are the window frames outside that need to be scraped and repainted.
  • have a garage sale…this really needs to happen.
  • work on reading and math with the kids.
  • lose weight, eat healthier & get a tan.
  • keep my lawn looking as good as it does right now (thanks to Mark, the lawn guy).
  • Journal and draw daily – which will be tough, since I am totally not in the habit of doing this.

It’s good to have goals, right?

So, it’s been a couple of weeks…

These past 2 weeks have flown by.  I have given more tests than I think I have ever taken in my whole lifetime!  But I feel a tremendous sense of accomplishment at finishing something I had no idea how to do a year ago.  I will miss my kindergartners.  They were a great group of kids…and parents.  Next year I am slated to do the same job, morning art and afternoon kindergarten.  Sure I am disappointed that I won’t be going back to teaching all art…but I am extremely grateful to have a job and to be doing the same thing as I did this year…and not having to learn something completely new, again.

I am in the midst of planning a birthday party for Max who is turning 7 next week.  I cannot believe he is already that old.  Bad thing is that this is ALWAYS the worst possible time to plan a party when you are a teacher.  When I was pregnant, his birth day couldn’t come soon enough…but now, I don’t think I would have minded if he would have hung out another week.  But I feel bad for Max, because seriously, his whole life, he has gotten jipped on pretty much every party.  It’s easy to do that when they are little and they don’t understand what a birthday is, and you can just call up your fam a couple of days before and say come on over and they actually show up with presents and food and everything.  But now, Max has friends and parties are a little more involved.  Last year we invited friends to Fun For All Kids…a place with a bunch of inflateables (which is now closed down).  And it was a good party.  Easy on us.  The kids had a blast.  But this year Max wants to have an Art Theme party…which of course I think is cool…and I can’t be lazy about planning this one…after all, I am an ART teacher.  So I asked my friend Sara (who designs stuff like this – check her out on Etsy!) to whip up a cool invitation for it. And it is REALLY cool.  Thanks Sara.  So I got the invitations out, but haven’t done much since then.  I have a ton to do around the house.  We are having a lot of guests…and I was planning an outside party, but it may rain, so we may do our grilling in the garage and I will need to be creative with how I do the activities.  I’m still trying to recover, I think, from staying up till 3 and 4 in the morning for 2 days in a row.  But my kids have some great little memory books to remember their year in Kindergarten.  🙂

My kids’ last day is Thursday.  Bean does their field day on the last day of school, so since I will officially be done with work tomorrow, I get to go.  But then afterwards, we are grabbing lunch and heading over to my room to clean, clean, clean.  I have to clean up both the kindergarten room and the art room.  It’s a lot to do, but since I didn’t have to teach kindergarten today (because we had an early dismissal), I actually did get quite a bit cleaned up.  I feel good about that.

The pictures were taken a few weeks ago, after buying a container of glow sticks (the kind you make into necklaces & bracelets) from Michaels and using our night setting on the camera.