Faith · Family · Homeschooling · Motherhood

A Day in Our Homeschool

I’m participating in Simple Homeschool’s linkup for a day in our homeschool life series. This series has been so encouraging and helpful in my little homeschool.

If you’re a regular reader of A Work of God, you may know that we homeschool. Or maybe not. It’s not something I write about very often. But it’s something I’m going to be writing about once a week moving forward.

Writing brings me accountability and a space to gather my thoughts, so I’m adding this slice of our life to the regular schedule.

Now, on to our homeschool day.

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Our cast of characters – Big Girl (7), Little One (18 months) and Man Cub (almost 3).

No day is typical in the Brandon family. I don’t think any day is typical. We may not remember all of the days, but each day brings a unique view of God’s plan for our lives and a little piece of who we are each day.

But if I had to pick a typical day, I’d pick a recent Tuesday.

6:30 a.m. I crawl over the man cub who takes up a lot of space in my bed to get a jump on my day before the critters get up.

The plan is to get a workout in before the little ones arise, but I feel a pull to a cup of coffee and a little time in God’s word. I choose the java and scripture because there’s not enough time to do it and the workout before breakfast. And I’m really trying to build the habit of consistently starting on time.

I don’t know about other homeschool families, but my oldest takes FOREVER to get going in the morning. So, we’re working on this habit. And I have to be the example. I am a morning person, so I like to savor the morning and get stuff done. She is not. She likes to hibernate on the couch or drag around. But iron sharpens iron and a mother sharpens her children. (My personal interpretation of Proverbs 27:17).

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I use these chore cards (from Biblical Homemaking) for morning lists to keep my bigger kids on task. The big girl needs the list to stay focused. The Type A man cub asks to do his list every morning. 

7:45 a.m. The toddlers and Big Girl (7) are up. I’m mostly dressed and unloading the dishwasher while asking Big Girl if she’s started her list because it’s expected to be done by 8:15. She hasn’t started. I send her back upstairs and start breakfast.

Little One (18 months and NOT walking) and Man Cub (almost 3) are sitting on the couch eating a graham cracker and drinking chocolate milk while watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (a morning tradition around here).

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Big Girl learned how to make coffee in our French press recently. Homeschooling is also life training around here.

8:30 a.m. Breakfast is being served. I’m still walking around the kitchen gathering items for the wee ones, sipping on a rewarmed cup of coffee. (I can’t tell you how many times I reheat my coffee each morning). The man cub is screaming for honey to pour on his oatmeal. He’s obsessed with oatmeal covered in honey. And he insists on drizzling it himself.

9:15 a.m. We’re finishing up breakfast and getting ready for the day.

9:30 a.m. We start Morning Time. We are working on this habit too. We sit around the kitchen table (or the toddlers sit on the table and play with busy bags or blocks (I keep a rotating bag of manipulative stuff like acorns and bowls and nesting cups nearby so they don’t get into the dog food).

Our morning time is my favorite part of our homeschool.

We start with a hymn (we’re on Holy, Holy, Holy). Next is a little devotion book geared at toddlers called Big Thoughts for Little People. The big girl loves it too. She usually reads it and tries to force the man cub to answer the questions. He’s not a fan of her reading to him. But I let her read it and then I read it again after a little pouting on her part.

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Sometimes memory work happens in a box. 🙂

Next, I read a chapter of Life of Fred Butterflies (a fun math book told in story form about a 5-year-old math genius) while the big girl draws (she’s fascinated with drawing coffee cups right now). We do the questions at the end of the chapter and laugh at the illustrations.

This is about 20 minutes into morning time and the toddlers start getting restless. I let them down to play and Little One goes upstairs to the kennel in my room (her clubhouse). Man Cub starts throwing Mega Bloks. It’s annoying, but he will usually clean them up with a little encouragement.

The dog is usually bothering us too at this point, so I give us a quick break with a movement song. Big Girl is a bouncy, kinesthetic learner (if you can’t tell from the picture above). She and I start marching around the kitchen, living, dining circle to Walk It Out (Have Fun Teaching).

We finish that up and I go get the toddlers out of stuff (again). Big Girl runs off to go “do something.” So typical. I head downstairs to change out the laundry.

10:00 a.m. I’m back upstairs trying to corral everyone. We should sit down for memory work, but I decide to hold that off until lunch or during nap time.

 

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Little One knows what’s important in life. Good food. Apple juice. Lovey.

10:30 a.m. Big Girl comes in from playing with her puppy. He’s as bouncy as she is. She and the toddlers start asking for a snack. So I throw a snack of apples and peanut butter together and get everyone a water bottle.

 

10:45 a.m. We head to our school room which is currently in the back of our closed in garage. We lock ourselves in there with our snack and I get the toddlers coloring supplies. They both start climbing on the table and asking to sit in my lap. But the colors occupy them. I monitor the floor for crayons (the dog eats them) while asking the big girl to please come sit down.

We dive into The Story of Ping while she draws some more. We’ve just started adding a week of Five in a Row every other week. We then have a discussion about the art and science elements (reflections and movement) and I bring in our science experiment on buoyancy (Does it sink or float in a tub of water?) The toddlers are fascinated and covered in water by the time this is over.

 

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This is me teaching at our homeschool co-op (with my little appendage) from The Story of Ping. I used it to teach about reflections and refractions in our nature study. I’m all about repurposing lessons. 🙂

11:30 a.m. Big Girl and I go back to the table while the toddlers play with the water. We attempt to do math. But Little One is ready for a nap. We finish the math lesson while she falls asleep in my lap with her “dess.” (It’s an old dress from the 60s that she drags around.)

 

12:00 p.m. I get the big girl started on her copy work and put the little one in her bed. I come back downstairs and start picking up as I go. I also change the laundry and determine that I’m going to fold the precariously stacked pile (on top of the dryer) this afternoon.

12:30 p.m. I grab a few books I want to work on upstairs after lunch (I like to change up our location so I can get stuff done around the house).

We head upstairs to make lunch. The man cub should be taking a nap, but he’s been boycotting them lately. So I let him watch more Mickey to quiet him down. Big Girl goes across the street to do her pet sitting job and outside to play with her puppy.

I get lunch ready and we read a chapter of The Indian in the Cupboard. We have a sweet discussion over the way Little Bear talks to Omri.

The afternoon is filled with us finishing up spelling, math, phonics and memory work alongside more snacks, toddler diversions and chores. About 4:00 we head outside for a little sunshine and walking practice for the little one. We walk up the street and chat with some neighbors.

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We have a bit of a book problem around here.

4:45 p.m. We head inside and I decide to make breakfast for dinner and get in a quick workout.

5:45 p.m. I unload the dishwasher and cook up more oatmeal for the man cub and breakfast skillets (eggs, potatoes, bacon and cheese) for me and the girls.

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Man Cub makes a fantastic centerpiece.

6:30 p.m. We sit down to eat dinner and start our evening routine a little TV, kitchen cleanup and a good pickup of the main living spaces.

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Training myself out of a job. This on-the-job-training might take a while, but it’s precious.

8:15 p.m. I take all three kids upstairs for bedtime routine (bath, books, prayers, songs, sleep). My hubby travels a lot, so it’s easier for me to just go upstairs for the night. I’ll get the kids to bed and do laundry or read for a while. It’s usually a combo of both. I try to sweep or vacuum while Big Girl supervises the toddler bath. Then I quickly fold a load of clothes.

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They love to sleep in a puppy pile. I could watch them sleep for hours.

9:30 p.m. Everyone is asleep and I’m finding myself dozing through my book. I’m currently reading Leigh Bortins’ The Core  and Stormie O’Martian’s The Power of a Praying Parent. I like to get a few pages of The Core in and use the other book as my nighttime prayers.

10:15 p.m. The dog wakes me up to go outside one more time. He won’t settle down until I take him.

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My fourth child is finally asleep.

 

10:20 p.m. Good night! (after a quick Instagram scroll for baby pictures from my friends).

Thanks for reading about our homeschool day. It’s a full day, but it’s a fulfilling day!

2 thoughts on “A Day in Our Homeschool

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