Thursday, March 18, 2010

Workbox Whiteboard

A while back my boys said they wanted to start reading their history, historical fiction, science, and composers by themselves instead of me reading aloud. Yes, I will admit, it was hard to give up. Yes, I was sad about giving up reading aloud to the boys for school. But they are growing up and they are different from my girls. They said they like reading by themselves better. They had done it a couple days here and there when I was not up to reading aloud. So I told them we would give it a try, but that I was going to require more writing from them in order to know that they were reading what I assigned. I thought maybe that would make them change their mind but they were, surprisingly, ok with that.

So I scrounged around the house for 4 more boxes for each of them. I would need the extra boxes to put their new individual work in. We are still using our assorted cardboard and plastic boxes. I am hoping to get more shelves to fit the boxes better, expand the shelving we already have or get new plastic drawers for their workboxes for next year. I am not sure yet.

Then what to do to let them know what was assigned for each of those classes each day. We do unit studies planned by me for History and Science. They could not just do the next pages or chapter of a textbook, everyday it is different. So on the weekend I spend a considerable amount of time planning out the next week. I plan what I feel to be a reasonable amount of work for History and Science from my planners that I work on in the summer. I write down what book and pages they boys are on for Historical Fiction, Bible and Composers. Then I add in any TOS products that have to be done that week so we have used them in our school before my reviews are done. Sometimes this means substituting TOS in the History box sometimes just adding a project into their TOS/Fun box. They have a box that I put TOS stuff in when we have it and if we don't have anything then I or they put a fun thing in there. I have re-organized the workbox order for the boys a number of times. Making sure they do not overlap the use of any school materials; since they do the same History, Bible, Composers, Historical Fiction, and Science; and the use of the computer for things like fun box, Historical Fiction (reading Henty pdf downloads from and typing has been challenging. Here is a sample week's page:

I am going to be re-doing this page myself. I need some boxes bigger than others for History and Science, others that I don't really write details in can be smaller, so I will be making a similar page in Open Office Calc and Writer.

I did not want to make up more laminated note cards that I would write on each day and put in their boxes because then I would have to write everything twice. I had been wanting a white board like Sue Patrick suggested in her book on workboxes. I had a coupon from Staples from my teachers club previous purchases and I had some money from my mom for school stuff so I bought this white board. 

Oh, next to the board is the Art Appreciation pictures. I keep 4 displayed at at time. Above that is our chore charts master list. Next to that is a poem on the blue paper.

I am happy with the whiteboard BUT I wish I had known that you can use white wallboard, it would have given me a lot more surface to write on. They were discussing this on the workbox yahoo group. If you go to this page at and see item #16605 you will see what I am talking about. If you need a white board and go with the wallboard instead of buying a whiteboard ready made I would suggest what the ladies on the workbox yahoo group said and put put some molding around it.

Anyway, each evening after the boys do school or Sunday night, I prep the workboxes and write the assignments on the board. I also write a verse on the top of the board for inspiration, not for memorization. Though, now that I think of it maybe I should put their Bible verse on the board, that might help them learn it better, if they see it every time they look at the board.

I hope you liked my review of how I plan my week and write assignments on the board.


Shannon said...

I like the idea of a white board for the workbox schedules. I have to rewrite everything on the little cards every night & I'm not sure they even look at them! LOL.
It would be nice to find one that has the days of week separated. I'm also thinking of changing to the drawers for the boxes.

Sheri said...

Thanks for sharing-I forgot about the white board-found it at Home Depot too-same price. (We don't have a Lowes by us) ....

I don't use those forms cuz I could never squeeze it all on those wee little boxes-LOL...

Jill S. said...

Looks great Debbie! I wouldn't regret buying your board because your time is worth something (and if you are like me, I'd buy the wallboard and it would take weeks to get the molding on, bracket for hanging, etc.). This way you had it for immediate use! Thanks for sharing how you are coordinating your board with workboxes.


Related Posts with Thumbnails