Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Our workbox setup

So this year I came upon the workboxing system and WOW do I really love it. It has really made school exciting for the kids. If you don't know what the system I'll give you a crash course because truthfully you really don't NEED the book, there are so many other bloggers that use this system and are so kind so share their workbox system. So first off your going to need a few things here is a list of what we needed for the basic set-up of the system....
~12 clear boxes per child (I got ours at walmart for 97 cents each)
~scotch Laminator which was $34 at walmart
~Velcro sticky back dots I would get the biggest pack will use them. I never really thought to use these but I find myself using them ALOT.
~and of course a printer so you can print off all the labels and box numbers.
~Your also going to need a cabinet of some sort to store all these workboxes, we lucked out and my husband found two big cabinets at his work that were unused...but Sue Patrick uses a metal cart like THIS one
So lets get started first you Your going to need to number your boxes and add your sticky dots to them....One dot for the numbers and another dot to label the box so your child knows what he'll be working on...

Then you may want to print out the days of the week with another copy of the numbered boxes and any other extra things you want to do like calender,snack time,clean-up, play outside,etc. My daughter likes doing this my son really could care less he gets more excited about moving on to the next box because I put more of the fun stuff toward the end. But here is his Monday card to give you an idea of what I mean...Oh and I hang them next to the workboxes on a scotch hanger which is also a great investment they ROCK!!

that's the basic set up I added magnetic storage boxes from the dollar store so as Caila works through the day she peels off the Number on her Monday card and she peels off the subject picture on the workbox and she stores them in here...

If the box doesn't say mom's help then it is an independent box and they must work on those boxes by themselves....which is 2/3 of the boxes. I really only have to help them with our read out loud books,Bible,our history, and Rick's geography, and Caila's explode the code just to make sure she understands what to do but for the most part she even does this by herself. If they need help they have three chances a day to redeem their help tags...I try to make a big deal about them and double check that they really need and want help "Are you sure you need my help Caila....are you sure you want to use a help tag Rick??" And if he/she says yes then I help with whatever she's stuck on. This has helped mommy alot...I'm now able to get things done for the next day of school, I even get to do a load of laundry done, and it's not a fight for mom's help...

So here is our basic workbox system set up...the top shelf is just storage for future lessons and a bin for work to be fixed.

Then when they've finished a box the make a pile next to our workbox's supposed to be visually motivating for the child so he/she can see what has already been done and what's to be done.Then they put their finished work in these bins...

and that's what I will correct or comment on before the next day I usually add stickers or smiley faces...I love playing teacher:-)
Here is a peek into some of Caila workboxes from last week
The one with the green box covers is a fun game where caila had a bean bag and she had to throw it on a box top...she then had to say the letters name and sound. (this was just a dollar store poster cut up) I usually try to buy two posters to use for fun games like this.
Also notice in the workboxes that everything needed it right there for Caila...there is no more running around during school for markers,crayons, etc.

And here are some of Rick's workboxes...

Here are my filler games and manipulatives collections. I call them fillers because Rick and Caila's core subjects don't fill up all 12 boxes so I add file folder games, take it to your seat games, games in a bag for Caila, puzzles, you know games that are educational but still fun for the kids.

And here is my school book addition I know it's alittle much and yet I still can't get enough books I'm always looking for more at the salvation army, savors, even tag sales.

As you may also notice I'm not the most orginized person and I think that's why I love this workbox system so much because it makes our school day go by so smoothly and it's still someting even I can do. Not to mention it adds an extra hour onto our school day but at the same time the kids don't complain anymore..."Are we almost done with school yet mommy?" I really can't rave about this system realy has changed our homeschooling family in such a positive way!! Thanks Sue Patrick!
Here are a few of my favorite blogs with free workbox printout to help you get started...


  1. Thank you so much for doing such a detailed post. We do workboxes, but I was wondering what I was missing by not having the "official" material.

  2. Jenn,
    You are the best! Seriously how sweet of you to give everyone such a comprehensive look into the system, you really have included everything one needs to give it a go.


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