When I was in college, studying early childhood education… ten years ago… we were told OVER and OVER again that worksheets were bad… don’t use them… they have no educational value… they are the easy way out. I have battled with this line of thought since I began teaching my own little monkeys at home. My son LOVES doing work books. Last year, when were VERY informal in our schooling (he was only 5)… I had a collection of workbooks that I had picked up at the dollar section. For fun, Big Brother would go grab one and work in it. He really enjoys those things! Little Sis does too. When she wants to “do school” I usually pull out a couple of pages and let her work. She learned all her letters, upper case and lower case from working in a Mickey Mouse workbook she got for Christmas.
Now… if all my children did for school was work pages and they had no interaction with me or math manipulatives or science experiments… that might present a problem. But.. I do not mind using work pages to enhance a lesson.

Big Brother has been working on measurement with an inch ruler this week. He was thrilled when I gave him his very own ruler! I pulled a couple of pages out of the Complete Book of Math (grades 1-2) that came with My Father’s World first grade. The pages required the use of the ruler and afforded us the opportunity to do the math lesson together.

 For this task, Big Brother had to estimate what different body parts might measure. We then measured and wrote down the actual measurement. He was really excited about this exercise. Later, he grabbed his notebook and ruler and went around the house estimating and measuring different objects. 
This sheet involved reading a map, measuring and adding. He had to measure the length from one spot to another on a map… and then to another. He had to add his findings to figure out the total length. I liked this sheet because it involved so many different skills. 
So… in conclusion, I like work pages. I think they can be a valuable tool when used alongside a lesson. I think they can be a great reinforcement tool. 
I highly recommend checking the dollar section at Target at the end of the summer… they usually have TONS of workbooks. Last year they had several leveled reading books as well!
To Worksheet or Not To Worksheet

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