Derailment! Getting Back on Track


It happens to everyone; you are moving right along when suddenly something unexpected happens such as an illness, or an unplanned event and your schooling hits a snag;  your academic plans become derailed. How do you get back to your teaching and the children working on school lessons?

Take an assessment of what needs to be finished.

  • How many lessons do you need to finish and how many days will it take to complete them?
  • Can you consolidate lessons?
  • Can you shorten them? Instead of having your child do 50 multiplication problems, how about 25 of them?
  • Does your student already know the information and is it review? Give a quiz or ask orally key concepts to see if your student has gained mastery. If so, then go on to a lesson that is new and concentrate your studies there.

If there are quite a few lessons, consider comparing the next year’s curriculum to see what concepts will be covered and wait to teach that next year. Textbooks review to a certain extent the material that has been covered the previous year at the commencement of a new academic year so you can teach that then. If it is not going to be covered in the future and is important, then do these lessons.

Formulate a plan to finish.

  • How long will it take to finish this year’s lessons? Write it out so that you can see what that looks like. If it appears you are going to be working through the summer, do short lessons and do not do school more than a couple of hours. The hot summer days of July are usually a time when no one wants to go outside and play. This would be a perfect time to do school with math review games and reading.
  • Set dates for completion. For example, by Friday we will need to complete 3 lessons on long division. Don not make it overwhelming if you are just getting back to your school routine. This will make you feel overwhelmed and not feeling like you can move forward.
  • Call a friend for support and ideas if you are feeling overwhelmed.
  • Talk to your children if they are of an appropriate age and show them what needs to be completed and the amount of time it will take to complete school. Everyone likes to know there is an end in sight and it will help to hold everyone accountable.
  • Make it fun. Can you play math review games that accomplishes the same thing as a worksheet or watch a video that compliments your studies?
  • Don’t give up. If you have to continue next year with work that needed to be finished this year, then plan accordingly. You may need to take a short summer break instead of a long one that you are are accustomed to taking. I think you will see that you will get caught up rather quickly. Be sure to ask for help if you need it.


3 thoughts on “Derailment! Getting Back on Track

  1. Thanks Lisa! I also needed to hear this today, especially for Math. We all do need that summer break, including me.


    • Yes, indeed! Summer is a time for all of us to get refreshed and rejuvenated. You can review concepts and facts over your break by playing card games or orally reviewing. I have been known to throw out multiplication or subtraction problems to my sons while driving. 🙂


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