Home school record keeping is also important when working on a home school high school diploma or if you are only planning on home schooling for a limited time.
When your child re-enters school, a record of work completed while home schooling will help with placement in appropriate grade and shows officials that required grade level work was completed.
Even if you plan on home schooling for the long haul, record keeping provides a way for you to keep track of your child’s progress, achievements and where you need to focus your energy. You will also become more organized and will have a way to keep on track.
Home school record keeping doesn’t have to be as awful as it sounds. A variety of products designed specifically for home educators are available to make home school record keeping more manageable.
Depending on what system works best for you, each offers a variety of benefits to help keep you and your home school family organized.
Online planners offer the convenience of keeping everything off your computer, and in an online account. No worries if you are away from your home, you can always keep up to date with your record keeping, through your online account.
Online programs may work slower if you do not have a highspeed internet connection, like cable.
Many online planning systems allow you to either plan ahead or enter in what you completed at the end of each day or week.
If it’s hard for you to plan ahead and you would rather just keep track of completed assignments, then look for one that offers the flexibility of keeping records based on your needs and what works best for you.
It may be hard for you to organize your lessons and plan ahead, but you certainly can record the lessons, assignment and activities that you completed! :)
Speaking of safe...
Security and confidentiality are extremely important!
Online Home School Record Keeping Warning...
No one should have access to your records but you, your spouse or authorized personnel. In the same manner, if you are using an online program, your records must be hosted on a secure server.
What is a secure server?
A Web server that is capable of establishing encrypted communications to protect sensitive information being transmitted over the Internet. A website hosted on a secure server always starts with https://.
Never submit your sensitive personal information, credit card number, etc. to a website or webpage that doesn’t start with https://. Most websites have visible security certificates, but make sure you check the web address just in case.
Record Keeping Software
Another home school record keeping option is a software program that you install onto your computer.
Once on your computer, you set up your system and away you go! Right?
For some of us who are more diligent, a computer software program might be the perfect solution. For others, you invest time installing, customizing it for your family and then there it stays...unused. :(
If you need some consistent reminders, make sure you look for one that automatically reminds you to update your records or you can use a program like Outlook.
Receiving timely reminders to regularly update your home school record keeping software, may be what you need to be more consistent.
Updating Your Records
Scheduling time to update records, is important if you want to stay consistent and up to date. If updating records everyday doesn’t digest well for you, try a few minutes, once a week - it may be all you need to keep up to date with your home schooling record keeping.
Perhaps a good time would be on Saturday morning.
My kids usually sleep in a little later and I love the peace and quiet that comes in the early morning hours. The projects and lessons you completed during the week will also be fresh in your mind, so you can give credit where credit it due.
There have been many activities, over the years, that my children have completed that could earn them credit for high school. If not recorded, they will be forgotten and sadly your child will miss out on receiving credit for their achievements.
Sunday evening before you start your new week is also another good time to work on your home schooling record keeping. This would also motivate you to schedule and plan your week out to make better use of your time.
Journals or Notebook Systems
If you like to write things down, a notebook planner may be your solution. This is a great way to plan your day, but for record keeping, I would use something that can keep track of records through a database.
A journal or notebook is an easy solution for keeping quick, daily records. You can refer to your notes when updating your home school record keeping program each week.
The benefits of having a journal handy is you can take it with you and work on it anywhere. If you have some free time while at piano lessons or soccer practice, pull out your journal and quickly update it.
Using a program that allows you to create reports from your data will also save you valuable time.
If you are going to write down what your kids have done, you might as well take the time to enter it into a program that allows you to create and print a variety of reports like transcripts and report cards.
You will also want the option to add extra-curricular activities, enrichment classes or field trips taken to your child’s portfolio.
Struggle with Record Keeping?
Find more tips for better homeschool record keeping here...
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