Friday Five: common conditions, containers, camaraderie, and conventions

posted in: actual | 3

Friday Five: follow-through, fun, freebie, FAQ, & free reads


~ follow-through ~

Weekly Wrap-Up

homeschool math u see MUS lesson

It’s been a solid, standard week of school around here. We checked off most of our boxes. That might not be the most important thing, but it is satisfying nonetheless.

Hans finished his Science book (The Story of Science volume 1) last week, so I ordered the next one and he started in on that. I guess this three-book series will only take us two years instead of three! Score! I knew there were fewer chapters than our school year, and he’s been doing a chapter a week, but I allowed for less consistency than I guess we’ve had!

That’s a nice surprise. :)


homeschool snapshothomeschool snapshot

Checklists on Monday v. checklists on Friday. Read about how to teach kids to use checklists here.

Favorite homeschool Instagram of the week:


Follow me on Instagram


~ fun ~


I had given my 7th grader a bin for his school stuff, but over the months he’s definitely outgrown it. I was complaining about his overflowing bin and he was complaining about it not being big enough for all his stuff, until finally I did something about it. He now has a dedicated shelf near a big desk area in our basement. No arranging books in a container and moving it to and from a shelf, no moving books all around the house, no question about where his stuff should be. It’s win-win-win.

It had been my corner, but my husband and I cleaned out his office and now I have my own little corner in the back office with a door to close, and I am much happier there, too.

And this is what the shelf usually looks like. Let’s be real.


~ freebie ~

Scholé Sisters has been quiet for awhile, but only because Brandy has been a busy bee, getting the website back up and running, learning how to podcast, and producing some fabulous episodes for the brand new Scholé Sisters Podcast!

schole sisters podcast

Classical education is not dry and dusty and theoretical. It’s in-the-trenches, real, nitty-gritty – at least it is for us! Join us as we talk about principles and practices colliding with real kids and real life.


~ FAQ ~

I’m sorry. My subject was not referring to homeschool conventions. As far as I know, I will not be attending any. I’m talking about email conventions – best practices to make managing the incoming information less taxing.

For our FAQ today I’m answering two questions related to the email advice that I give in Simplified Email.

I just watched the lesson about labeling. How do you choose which emails to label? Do you label most of your emails?

I actually label very few of my emails. Because I’m only archiving and not deleting my emails, I don’t worry about categorizing things with labels. I only add a label to an email if it’s an email I’d like to find later but it will be hard to search for. For example, I use a label for all “fan mail” and feedback emails I get related to my blog, because those are not emails I’d be able to search for easily (I wouldn’t remember the names and they all use different words), but I might want to pull them up in some future moment of vanity or despair. :)

Another way I use labels is to move things automatically out of my inbox but still see a count of unread, as I show in the video in the course about creating a “to read” folder/label that doesn’t clutter up your inbox.

But most emails I just toss into the big archive bucket, knowing I can search and find them again if I need to.

Can I use the various stars I’ve created in the gmail app on my Android phone? That’s typically where I do my triage and then go on the laptop at night to actually act upon what I’ve read/started throughout the day. But all I see on my phone is the default yellow star, and I’m afraid that all of my hard work on the laptop is just being negated by using my phone to read gmail during the day.

It’s true. All the different stars do not translate to mobile and mobile only allows for one “flag,” not all the variety of stars.

I do sometimes check email on mobile and do a quick triage by archiving what I can, then when I get to my laptop, I mark anything that might sit in my inbox for awhile before I can deal with it.

It works for me because I don’t really write emails from a mobile device, I only check & archive or read messages that I’ve marked for reading (like blog post emails and newsletters).

You have to notice your own patterns of usage and habits to determine what app and what methods to use for your own email routine. There is no one right way, but just several tools to try out to find a combination that works for you.


~ free reads ~

kids reading or bookshelf

Books read in our home this week:

3 Responses

  1. Amber Vanderpol
    |

    I love that picture of your girls reading together!! I’m looking forward to listening to the podcast as I pace tonight :-)

  2. Leslie
    |

    Thanks for sharing about your homeschooling week at the Weekly Wrap-Up. Ours was snowy! It’s always good to see what other folks are reading. We would love for you to link up your posts about homeschooling and literacy at Literacy Musing Mondays #LMMLinkup http://www.foreverjoyful.net/?p=782

  3. Virginia Lee Rogers
    |

    We recently did something similar with our 4th grader. He had a cubby that he outgrew, so we moved him to a shelf in our Reading Room and it is working out so much better. When I saw your, how the shelf normally looks picture, I laughed. My son’s is the same way. I ask him at the end of each day how that could possibly happen. Then I watched him put stuff away. I have my answer. =) My next two children are girls. They do not seem to have this problem. But his work is very neat (unless you consider margin doodles to be messy; I quite like them). So I figure that’s the important part. He just has to tidy the shelf on Fri so I can have neat looking bookshelves over the weekend. Always enjoy seeing your “real” photos. Thanks!