Monday, September 24, 2012

Student Store

I'm just gonna come out & say it - last year the main reason I did a student store type thing was because it was our first year homeschooling & I wanted Capt. N to enjoy it as much as possible. And, if that meant buying him ridiculous crap, so be it. When the kids at his old school bug him about coming back to school with them, I wanted him to be able to proudly say he was actually enjoying homeschool. I'm sure it's not only because of the student store, but he did (& does) very much like being homeschooled.

This year I changed the student store since we were adding a first grader into the mix. Last year I called it personal finance & it was a lot more involved. This year it's really quite simple. The better they perform in school, the more money they will earn & be able to spend in the student store.

I still feel like a newbie to homeschooling. One thing I struggle with is how to make my kids want to do the best job they can & put a decent amount of effort into every task. Too often I feel like they write sloppily and hurry through their work, just so they can be done. It seems like they would take a bit more pride in their work if a "real teacher" were looking & grading their papers. I use this year's student store as incentive. The harder they work the more money they can earn. What do you guys do so you're students take pride in all their work?

I fill out this form (or one similar) for many of the assignments my kids complete. The total points are traded in for money.

I record all the money they have earned on this sheet. Every two or three weeks we add it up & they can spend their fake money at the student store.

Originally, my plan was to have the prices be similar to what the items would be at the store. But after the first week, I realized the boys made too much money & I didn't want them getting that many prizes. So everything is priced about double what you could buy if for in the store.

I lay out a pile of prizes grouped by prices & the boys can purchase whatever they can. They can also save their money, if they would like. By far, the most popular prizes are the Lego MiniFig's - no surprise there.

Although I am using the student store as incentive or a bribe, they really are practicing their math skills. Of course, it's a little easier for Capt. N. But, Mr. T is learning valuable skills adding & subtracting money. They have to figure out for themselves what they can buy & how much they have left over.

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