Finishing Strong

Finishing Strong

We are coming to the end of our school year and the warm weather and scene from our windows pulls us outside.

I find these to be the hardest school days.

Who wants to go out in the winter when the wind is biting and the snow piles make moving anywhere difficult? School is easy on winter days, there’s nowhere to go. Cozy blankets and good books keep us warm and occupied.

But on warm, sunny days we just want to be done. Writing papers and finishing math is difficult. The only science we want is bug exploration and flower studies on all that is coming alive in our own backyards. We lay in the yard, stare up at the sky and follow the cloud formations, pointing out the shapes of people and animals floating by.

We all know there are things we have to buckle down and do.

We holler out, “Finish strong!” … but even as mom’s we just want to be done.

So how can we get ourselves motivated to finish strong?

  1. Mark the final day – There’s nothing like a deadline to keep us focused. It’s that determination in hitting the mark and crossing the finish line. Make a paper chain and rip off each new day. Mark off the days on a calendar. Visual reminders are great motivators!
  2. Keep focus on the joy of learning, not on the tedious task of marking off the list. This idea can still be a difficult one for me. I’m a ‘check off the list and complete the task’ kind of girl. I’ve been the drill sergeant of “You’re not done until you’re done!” But I have learned over the years that sometimes I can just be drilling over an arduous task that doesn’t necessarily have to be continued. (i.e. – completing a handwriting workbook, finishing every lesson in the math textbook, reading every last book and every last assignment.) We are doing this homeschooling thing to instill a love for learning, hunger for knowledge and the joy of discovering. They will learn handwriting, they will have another chance at getting that math equation solved. Grace is found in balancing the important against the tedious.
  3. Celebrate a job well done – I love reaching the end of the school year and looking back at all the previous written quarterly reports. We really did accomplish a lot. We read books, we learned important facts and stretched our brains in new ways. We grasped new concepts and built another layer onto some old ones. We grew in new ways. Celebrate that accomplishment!

This is something we have practiced since the beginning of our schooling years… 13 years ago.

We mark the final day and celebrate a job well done! There are many ways to get this done. There’s no right or wrong way just a simple celebration of crossing the finish line!

Here’s some ideas to get the ball rolling:

  • Visit a museum with the emphasis on a time period from the year’s lessons.
  • Pack a picnic lunch and eat in the park
  • Go on a hike and talk about favorite books, history characters, or science knowledge learned this year.
  • Take in a movie followed by ice cream
  • A day trip to Darien Lake (This is a great motivator… especially with the homeschooled discount tickets)
  • Throw a party in your backyard and invite friends to celebrate with you
  • Go bowling
  • Have a movie night at home and pick a favorite food choice from each kid

Nothing has to be expensive to be meaningful. Marking the date, keeping the focus and celebrating the finish line swings us into some beautiful, relaxing summer days! We can do it! Let’s Finish Strong!

Join the Conversation:

  • What’s the hardest part for you in finishing off the school year?
  • How do you mark the end of a school year?
  • Share with us any year-end celebration ideas!



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