Ok, we are back from violin lessons.
Disclaimer - my kids are NOT independent learners by any means at this point! That said, here are the resources...
Here is the website with the method for teaching your children to be independent learners. This is supposed to work well with any method, but I do think that CM is a bit of a challenge, but could still be done for subjects that you aren't doing together as a family. You would need to get the kids doing things like taping their narrations (or drawing picture narrations - something they don't need you right there to narrate to.) The author of this site wrote an article for "Home School Enrichment Magazine" - I was able to get a free article from the magazine by asking her... that was quite a while ago... http://www.urthemom.com/ A lot of this is setting goals with the children... and the rule is that they have to work on every subject everyday, but they get to decide how much on each subject (to try to reach their goals) - there is more to it of course, but that is the basics.
Now - workboxes....
Our first year of homeschooling, we started with a system that wasn't quite exactly workboxes (the exact system is VERY specific on how to do things) but quite similar.... partway through we lost the use of our schoolroom - so I changed to a filebox system with work-folders. We used it the rest of that year, and most of our 2nd year. This year, because pretty much all our subjects are family based - I just print our daily to-do from the SCM Organizer, and we just pick topics as we wish (with me trying to make sure there is a good mix...)... But I think the fileboxes could work for you, because they are portable. I'd get a fairly small portable filebox for each child with a handle. There are some with a storage area in the lids that can hold pencils and a ruler etc... if you can, get that (or keep a pencil case in the box.) You also need hanging file folders... the workbox method recommends having 12 boxes (or files). I also put a grid with velcro on the outside - this was used sometimes, but not often.... it allows you to put in things to do other than subjects.
The rules (and it would take a bit of training), is that they are to start at file 1, do that, then move to file 2, etc. The grid on the outside would allow a visual for you and them on how far along they are. As much as possible, everything needed for them to do that activity/work would be in there. I'd also have a timer somewhere there for a few subjects... A key thing is a few of the boxes/folders should have something more fun in it. that is easier with boxes, but is still possible in fileboxes. oh, btw - we used little "yellow stickie" flags a lot - one colour for "start here", and another colour for "stop here". There are markers for "do with mom"... obviously you would want all those subjects at the end, to be done in the afternoon....
So - off the top of my head, here is a day's work for one child (with a few things on the "grid")
1) child pulls out the folder and finds.... Math - might depend a bit on your curriculum... the book in there with the lesson marked with the flags. Or their worksheet. Or their lesson DVD and worksheet. Manipulatives needed for the lesson would be placed in a workbox - in a filebox they might be in a pencil box at the back of the filebox, or somewhere else....
2) child pulls out the folder and finds.... fun box - there is a paper puzzle for the child to put together
3) child pulls out the folder and finds.... History - the book "Growing up in Ancient Greece" is in there with pages 6-9 marked with flags
4) child pulls out the folder and finds.... Art - book "Draw Write Now" (any of them), along with paper, and instructions to pick something from the book and draw it.
at this point on the grid, there is a card that says do 20 jumping jacks
5) child pulls out the folder and finds.... Science - Burgess Bird Book with a chapter marked with flags. Coloring pages of the birds discussed. Indicator to go to the computer to the link provided and listen to the bird calls.
6) child pulls out the folder and finds.... fun box - there is a snack bar in there and a juice box.
7) child pulls out the folder and finds.... copywork. There is a page with a quote, and paper
at this point on the grid, there is a card that says to do 5 pushups
8) child pulls out the folder and finds.... literature. the book "Just David" with start and end points marked off. Small voice recorder with instructions to tell back what happens (or you ask what is happining in the book later...)
9) child pulls out the folder and finds.... spelling. - the passage to be studied for another day.
2) child pulls out the folder and finds.... fun box - instructions to make a paper airplane, a couple of sheets of paper
Work with Mom card is hit... (subjects done in the afternoon...)
11) History - Reading from "Famous Men of Greece" - done with you and narrated
12) Picture Study - Picture from the portfolio of the Artist you are doing
Doing something like this will take some training... I assume you have to currently sometimes get them back on track... there would be some of that too. The main thing would be deciding on the consequences for not getting the work done (and some good consequences for getting it done?).....
hope that helped some!