In all honesty, summer vacation is more like "summer vacation." In other words, it may be a break for the children, but it sure isn't for mama! Even though there's no school work, I find (in common with many other mamas I've talked to) that non-school days are actually harder on mama than school days. There is less structure and fewer things for the children to do, and thus more mess, more chaos, and more sibbling squabbles.
(Not to mention that the children insist on having all of the usual amenities like food, diapers, snacks, reading time, baths, and all the extras even though it's vacation! Sheesh.)
Added on to all of that is the fact that I usually make up an enormous to-do list for myself that is impossible to complete - especially while the children are making noise and messes underfoot, and needing me just as much as usual.
There are many tasks to be done in finishing up one year and preparing for the next! And they have to be done. I find myself fitting many of these items in before the children are up and after they're in bed. Having a good list gives me an idea of how I'm doing, and it feels good to knock things out whenever I have a chance to steal a few minutes.
With that in mind, I thought you all might like to see my summer to-do list! Some of these items apply to every break, and some are specific only to summer break. Additionally, this is my "stock list" - it consists of the things that must be done every summer, not a list particular to this summer.
Here it is!
Summer Break To-Do List
- Plan next term's six SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS (pick experiments, check supplies)
- Pick COUNTRY for next study
- Set up country on EVERNOTE
- Plan next term's six country-study CRAFTS
- Plan next term's six country-study RECIPES
- Order first set of books for new country
- Clean out my homeschool planning notebook
- Clean out school supplies, replenish
- Write new goal sheet for myself and for each child
- Write student progress reports (this is done three times per year)
- Make Summer BREAK notebook - one outing or craft/activity per day, plus a big idea list
- Also make a Summer SEASON notebook (for coming May/June/July/August season)
- Order new curricula
- Projects - house, organization
- Start new chore assignments
- Buy new school supplies - crayons, markers, colored pencils, pencils, paper, printer paper, ink, cardstock, colored paper, paints
- Type up yearly curriculum/study summaries for each child (what subjects, curricula, and materials were covered and completed in each child's studies over the past year)
- Type previous year's Field Trip List, print one per child
- Finish compiling student notebooks: School papers, plus copies of:
- (1) science experiment list
- (2) craft list
- (3) field trip list
- (4) picture study list
- (5) poetry book list
- (6) completed unit study print-outs
- Redo my homeschool notebook - clean out, print new copies of needed pages
- Print year of calendars
- Print first Bible memory chapter
- Print catechism sheets
- Print new record sheets: (1) science experiments, (2) crafts, (3) field trips, (4) picture study, (5) poetry books
- Update safety curriculum
- Start new student notebooks for coming year
- Plan family party for night before school starts
- Plan special first-day back (new supplies, donuts, signs, cards)
Will I get it all done? I can only hope!
How do you use your summers? I'd love to hear about your plans and strategies!