Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Our homeschool "schedule" (somewhat)

So, I am a newbie to this homeschool thing. Not so much to teaching, but the way different approach to school at home.  As I have mentioned, my oldest started Kindergarten this year.  I'm grateful and privileged to be her teacher ; )  We are having a blast (I hope she would say the same?!).  Her younger sister is doing Preschool at home and her second youngest sister is in "Tot School".  She likes that she has a title. ; )

When we started, I really wanted to adhere to a schedule.  I know homeschool is all about flexibility (curriculum, time, place, etc. ), but I want to make sure my kids learn to be disciplined and understand the importance of routine.  I also want to make sure that we respect our time of learning together and don't want to get into the habit of leaving for the day on every whim or allow myself to be interrupted all throughout the day. (That would be discipline on my part for sure!!!!)

Well, it was kind of stressful funny that I got so regimented. We started doing our group time at 10:00 every morning while the baby was taking her first nap.  It was a little less chaotic this way.  Over the past several weeks, many things have changed - as they consistently do with little ones.  The baby now only takes one nap in the afternoon.  I have also found that I can focus better when I have had time to get some chores done in the morning.  I feel more at ease when the house isn't quite as disastrous.  Therefore, we are now having afternoon "school".  I'm sure it will change again at some point soon?!

I also get bored very quickly with my surroundings.  I LOVE our room (you can see it here) that we have set apart for learning activities, but on occasion we have school all over the house, at my parent's house and outside.  All this said, I teeter between being a regimented freak to an overly laid back go with the flow gal.

Anyway, here's a glance at what our schedule somewhat looks like this year:

Group time
- songs (silly songs, Bible songs, Spanish songs, action songs)
- Pledge of Allegiance
- introduce the letter and number for the week/day, how to write them
- introduce the topic (i.e. all about penguins that go with the letter "P" for the week)
- Bible
- Spanish (click here to learn more of what we do with Spanish)

Desk work
- Elementary daily notebook (Kindergarten
- My Father's World activities (Kindergarten)
Preschool daily notebook  (Preschool)

I am trying to come up with a plan so that we remember to be intentional about focusing on other areas so maybe alternate days?!  (I would love some suggestions for this)

Specials/The Arts
- Spanish
- crafts (usually that go along with the lesson)
- music time with instruments (B. Parum Pum Pum Drum)
- physical education (gymnastics, bikes, yoga, mini trampoline,  plain old fun fun fun)
- cooking with mommy in the kitchen

In summary, I'm learning to take advantage of the beauty of the flexibility that comes with home educating.  I am trying to relax and continually reminding myself that they are learning all throughout the day - not only during the times I have "scheduled" for school.  I also have to remember that flexibility is one of the biggest reasons we chose to do this. We are not limited to place or time.  This quote below is a beautiful reminder for me!  Kids learn by simply playing!

I would reallllllly love to hear your views on schedules, routines and flexibility regarding homeschooling?!

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