I purposely did not purchase planning software this year (big change for me) in an effort to get away from "doing school" and to get closer to "learning as a way of life." However, there are some tasks, usually the mundane ones, that we forget to do if they are not spelled out for us in a schedule. So, after using a handwritten goal chart successfully for a week, I created another Excel spreadsheet to use with Thing1.
My dilemma now (because I always have one) is how much initiative to expect from a 7-year-old in completing the goals. I want to put some responsibility on him because he needs it, but when I see "7-year-old" typed out in black and white, I back up a little. How much prodding throughout the week is appropriate for his age? Obviously, the tasks that require my attention (spelling, writing, history, and science) are done on my time. The independent work is the challenge. My solution for now is to insist on work before play but not to hound him about lolligagging (difficult for me). Usually a wordless, appropriate consequence works better than my endless nagging.
Last week, he did not accomplish all of his goals before Saturday and, as a consequence, had to stay inside to complete them on Saturday while The Husband and Thing2 were outside working on projects. I felt bad for him, and I really wanted to let him off the hook. But with the hope that a couple of disappointing Saturdays would help the initiative development along, I stuck to my guns.
My conclusion from my last schedule experiment is that it was profitable for a few weeks. I am hoping this goal chart method will last a bit longer.
As for the initiative experiment, results will take time...11 years, perhaps. Remind me to post the results then.