Tuesday, August 5, 2008
a typical homeschool day
I thought I might document a typical homeschool day for all of you who are curious about what we do around here. It's really quite simple. The kids wake up around 7 and we eat breakfast and watch a kid's show or short movie. The kids need a slow start in the morning because they take a long time to wake up. I also eat breakfast (both breakfasts, usually about an hour after breakfast 1 I'm ready for #2.... blame it on the baby), read the paper and try to workout (my "Biggest Loser" DVD is getting really annoying and a little more challenging as my bump increases). At 9 we officially start our school day. I give Jason his Bible reading assignment out of The Beginner's Bible and I settle Cameron into an activity. After his reading I ask him one of two comprehension questions and allow him to look the answers up if he needs it. Then together the three of us pray for our day. Cameron loves this part. She likes to sit with her hands folded and corrects me ("No Mom, it's not 'Dear Lord,' it's 'Dear God'!"). Both kids like to hear me pray for them by name but when I ask for help for them in being obedient and kind to one another the excitement fades! We then read our history assignment and literature assignment. Right now we are using the Usborne series of books to learn about cultures of the world. In literature we are reading Favorite Poems of Childhood. Jason likes the challenge of listening to the poem and then going back to find key words that hint at the meaning of the poem. This is pretty basic, most poems we have read so far decribe an animal and he has to guess the animal. After all this reading he is wiggly so he gets a break for a half hour to play. I use this time to dry my hair, do any unfinished dishes, throw a load of laundry in or sweep/vacuum floors. You can get a lot done in a half hour! Reading is usually done on the couch so after the break we move over to the table to do handwriting, math and language arts. Jason loves math right now because addition is making sense to him. I like our math program because it involves mental math as well as written equations. Language arts consists of learning a new rule every week and then practicing in various ways. Last week we learned about compound words and this week our rule is suffixes. Spelling words are made from examples used in teaching the rule. Jason is pictured here taking a spelling pre-test (9 out of 10 correct!) and Cameron is busy coloring at the same time. We learned the hard way that Cameron can only draw with markers at the table, strapped in and under close supervision! Jason also does written exercises to practice sentence formation and rules. All this writing demands another break! We save the best for last because Jason loves science. Our assignments include a short reading and then worksheet. On Fridays we get to do experiments. Very fun! This concludes our schoolwork. At this point I include the kids in a household chore (yesterday we mopped the kitchen floor together..... yikes!). Tomorrow we'll all fold laundry together. This is also a good time for a craft project (today we painted sticks that we had collected on a nature walk) or baking cookies. The afternoons are reserved for outings like the library, the pool or a park and also errands. Mostly, the afternoons are a good time for naps, reading or playing. School only takes about two hours every day. I am thrilled that I don't have to battle traffic at drop-off zones or battle a young man who wears weird clothing combinations some days. I like the moments when Cameron stops what she's doing to listen or watch Jason. I especially like being home with my kids... I'm one of those weird people who misses them when they're away!