It's that time of year again.
School days are getting shorter and shorter because the sunshine calls to the children from the other side of the window. They want to be outside running around instead of indoors doing "school," and so--we let them.
The excitement is building about the annual Home School Conference & Book Fair coming up next month, preparations are in full swing. So what does this look like for our family? What are some ways that we begin preparing for a conference?
Review Your Priorities: This is a biggie for me. I have one month (before the conference) to review my reasons and purpose in this adventure. This is the time that I start reading back through those books that encourage me regarding our philosophy like Educating The Whole Hearted Child, For the Children's Sake and A Charlotte Mason Companion.
Re-Evaluate Your Curriculum Choices: We must go with a plan. If I show up to the book fair without any idea of our new school year, I can easily become overwhelmed at all of the choices. For us, we don't use much curriculum so our "list" of purchases will be slim. This year, I will be looking for reading games and used books that are out of print or not found at the library.
Talk as a couple about a budget. How much money are you planning on bringing for curriculum. We love books, coming with a money plan is a must for us, or it can be easy to spend more than we should. (This year our children are joining us, they have started saving money for their own book spending.)
Plan Your Sessions: Don't show up without a plan. Read over the sessions and speakers so that you have an idea of whose teaching you would like to sit under. There are many great options, and not much time in between to decide so it is best to come with a plan. We usually print of the workshop schedule a few days early and my husband and I highlight the sessions that we plan on attending. Sometimes we may be attending separate workshops if he goes to a daddy session and I, one for mothers.
Have fun picking out a notebook and good pen for taking notes: For those of you that know me in person, you know that I am an avid note taker. I get excited about conferences just so I can sit and take notes on the sessions. You might even find me out shopping, solely for that special inky pen that will be joining me. No kidding, I actually have a pen shopping buddy, we plan dates for that purpose alone. :)
On the day of the event, bring snacks and comfy shoes: We pack our own lunch so that this will not tap into our budgeted money. Snacks, water, you don't want to find yourself exhausted half way through the day so be sure you come with plenty of protein options. If you don't want blisters on your feet, make sure that you have comfy shoes on, you will be spending lots of time standing.
I plan on doing a post about the notes taken at the conference next month so stay tuned for that. The speakers are going to be wonderful!