Our First Day of Homeschool (And A Brief Overview of Our Plans)

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Hello, graceful friend! Today was our first day of homeschool for the year. I’ve got Lily in 2nd, Isabella in K4, and Isaac in… well… He’s just here looking cute and making messes while I read out loud to him.

First day of homeschool

The day was successful! We did pretty much everything I planned, but it did take a lot longer than expected. Well, I say that, but I always expect things to take longer than planned anyway. I just know that they usually do. That’s why I try to schedule in plenty of “margin time” for the inevitable interruptions and unplanned fun. (I’ll share my planned “routine” for this term in a minute.) Let’s just say I tried my best not to cram too many activities into the day, so that hopefully my plans will be doable this time.  I’m sure I’ll have to tweak them a bit.  I’ll post a homeschooling update in a few weeks to let you know how it’s going and what I’ve had to change.11885769_1476960295957333_9025661884771511953_o

This morning after breakfast, to make the first day of school special I gave the girls their own new supply boxes with all new school supplies (eeek!). I had way too much fun buying these.  I also made each girl a small posterboard sign with their name and grade level that they got to decorate with their new glitter glue after they opened their supply boxes. This decorating time was actually spontaneous, but it was such a good idea that I just went with it.  I’m so glad they were excited about it! I wanted to make it a special day for them, since it’s a little (well, a lot) different than going to school on the first day.First day of 2nd grade! :) #lily #homeschoollife #homeschool

We did math worksheets right after they decorated their posters. (Math will usually be right after breakfast, as a part of what I call “breakfast block.”)

Next, it was time to “get ready for the day,” which includes three things I have had Lily memorize.

  1. Get dressed.
  2. Brush your teeth.
  3. Make your bed.

We skipped chores today because the first-day-of-school fun took up a lot of time. We went for a walk outside next, mostly because Isaac needs this little breather before he can be expected to cooperate with the girls’ school activities.11218573_1477045489282147_7888633554158774585_o  Lily practiced her skating, Isabella rode her tricyle (she prefers this to her bike for some reason), and I pushed Isaac in his stroller. It is actually amazing how many things you can teach your littles while on a walk in your neighborhood. (Post coming soon ALL about just that. Maybe next Monday.)

We had a quick snack and the kids watched an episode of Word World while I finished up a few things in the homeschool room.

Next was Morning Time, which today consisted of only reading aloud. I first found out about morning time last year from Sarah Mackenzie through Crystal Paine’s blog. We love it! My Morning Time plans are still in progress.  I love the idea of a Morning Time binder, and I can’t wait to check out Pam Barnhill’s new podcast called the Morning Basket—all about Morning Time!

Lily completed a new lesson in her All About Reading phonics program, and we did a spelling lesson as a part of the “Language Arts” loop today.  (Find more information about loop scheduling here.) Most days, we will shoot for at least two LA subjects in the loop, but today was unique because of the whole first-day-of-school thing.

After lunch Lily, Isabella, and I worked on adding to their animal books, which will be part of our science curriculum this year. It’s really a combination of science and nature study, although not strictly Charlotte Mason style. I love the idea of nature study, I’m just being a little spontaneous with it. Basically, we’re making pages about animals we’re interested in.  We’re drawing them, coloring them, coloring printed pages about them, reading about them, googling facts about them… and then Lily (being the 2nd grader) is writing facts about them in her book. We are starting the animal books with snails, slugs, roly-polies, and earthworms (because the girls found the MOTHER-LOAD of these slimy creatures last week, put them in a cage, and then I just capitalized on their interest).

At the risk of this post getting too long to hold your interest {smile}, here is a brief overview of my planned “routine” for this term. We plan to school approximately six weeks on, one week off for the whole year because I’ve found that a short break does a tremendous amount of good for both the kids and me.

7:30 to 9:00 – Breakfast Block. Includes math at the kitchen table, getting ready for the day, chore time, and outside play.

9:00 to 10:30 – Morning Time Block. Includes read aloud time for all children. More plans in progress!

10:30 to 12:00 – Snack Block. Includes a brief snack, phonics, and our language arts loop.

12:00 to 1:30 – Lunch Block. Includes lunch and then either science or history. As of right now, I am planning to alternate science and history every other week. Once a week, we will go to the library during this time. (We may try my husband doing a history lesson with the girls after I do science with them when his schedule allows.)

1:30 to 3:00 – Free Play.

I always have more ideas in progress in my head, so there are things I’m planning to add to my plan as I get it finalized. I’m working on a book list for read alouds as we speak, and I’m planning memory work for the kids as well. I could write and write and write about all this, but I’ll go for now and share more along the way.11870892_1473317676321595_6691260945285449333_n

Blessings to you in your journey, wherever it may lead!

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About the author

Tasha

Tasha Medellin is a head-over-heels-in-love wife and not-so-perfect mother of three who loves spending time outdoors, curling up with a good book, and simply basking in the riches of God's glorious grace.

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