Monday, February 26, 2018

Homeschool Day in the Life: Carrie's Day with a 10, 8, and 6 year old!



It's that time of year again - time for the Homeschool Day in the Life Series over at Simple Homeschool! I LOVE hearing about how other homeschooling families do life and learning! So today, I'll link up and share what we do on a 'typical' day of homeschool! We school five days a week, taking off whatever day of the week my husband is off of work, which is often Thursday or Friday instead of Saturday. In the 18 weeks of the year when our homeschool co-op (which all four of us LOVE and look forward to) meets on Tuesday, we also set aside our curriculum on that day. Instead, our 3 hours of co-op classes and one hour for a library trip are our school that day.

On a typical day of homeschool, the kids usually wake up between 6:00 and 6:45 and play upstairs until 7:00. I get up and take a shower between 6:30 and 6:50, and read or listen to my daily Bible reading through CBR, which is an app our church uses to read and discuss the Word together!

At 7:00, the kids come downstairs and we gather on my bed to do our morning Bible study together. Natalie and David are working on their Word of Life Quiet Time Diaries, and Zachary reads his Sports Devotional. Then we pray together, using the PrayerMate app for our regular prayer lists (family, friends, neighbors, etc) and the Echo Prayer app for recent needs from family and church friends. A friend of mine recently suggested using the ACTS method of prayer, and this has really connected with Zachary (10).

At 7:30, it's cleaning time! We listen to some music on YouTube on the TV (like TobyMac, Aaron Cole, Vexento, The Fat Rat, or Parry Gripp songs) while the kids clean up the toys, books, shoes and laundry that's been left around the house over the last 24 hours. I start the day's laundry, pick up downstairs and start breakfast while the kids clean.

By 8:15 or so, Zachary's usually ready to start his computer school. He uses the 5th grade Easy Peasy curriculum, except for the Reading/Literature portion. For that, I just make sure he's reading quality chapter books on a regular basis - he is a voracious reader and always aces any vocab, comprehension, or spelling I throw at him, so I don't worry too much about that part of his schoolwork. He is using the M (middle school) level of history and science (Year 3) on EP this year, so he is also doing most of those activities independently. Sometimes he likes help with his math (which is mostly through Khan Academy), if it's a difficult or new concept, so I sit with him and help him through those questions, but otherwise, he is very independent with his work.

He is learning Japanese and Russian, using the Duolingo website, also. He is using a new website called Habitica to keep track of his daily to-do's - it has some improvements over Wunderlist, which we were previously using (for example, there is a whole section of daily to-do's that you don't have to remember to re-add every day), but it can also be distracting to him, since it has some pretty fun features as well. When he finishes his work (usually later in the morning), he enjoys making animation projects on Scratch as well.

Zachary working on his Japanese Duolingo

Doing schoolwork in a Ninja Turtle mask - why not? 
Breakfast is around 8:45 or 9:00, usually. We eat at the table together, and go over our Charlotte Mason memory verse box. Here are the verses we are working on memorizing right now!



After breakfast, we do chores. Here is our current chore chart, which we rarely stick to, depending what else we have going on, but it does help me out to have some more things assigned to the kids.


David rinsing the dishes

After our breakfast chores, David (1st grade) and I sit down on the couch to read together. He reads to me first - he has finished this set of A Beka readers this year, and is now working through an A Beka Aesop's Fables book. Sometimes we take a break from these to have him read some kind of leveled Easy Reader from the library or our own collection. Then he picks out two or three books for me to read to him. This is such a special, cozy time together. Sometimes Natalie (2nd grade) still joins us, too!



Next, I typically teach David his 1st grade Easy Peasy online work (again, minus the reading, which is too advanced for his current reading level). He is also using 1st grade level Handwriting Without Tears to master printing. He loves to play math or strategy games on ABCya when he has finished his work. Usually everyone takes an outside break after this, and I finish up cleaning the kitchen.

David doing computer work

David doing his handwriting
Playing an online game with Zachary's help

Later in the morning, David and Natalie and I gather on the couch to snuggle and study our EP Year 3 Level L Bible, social studies, science and specials work! We read the day's Bible passage together. We're studying geography this year, so we've been playing a lot of geography games (Seterra and Sheppard's Software are my favorites) to learn where the countries of the world are located! We studied Europe, Africa, Oceania, the Middle East, and now we're in Asia! For science, we are studying earth science, weather, and space this year! We just finished up weather. The best website we have used this year for earth science is this one from Illinois Extension - it reads the info aloud so the kids can hear a different voice than mine (for once, lol!) and has interactive videos on almost every page. Here is another excellent site done by the Illinois Extension about weather.

A recent craft of the Taj Mahal

We have done art projects that coincide with the parts of the world we're learning about - here's Natalie's indigenous Australian playing a flute, which she painted during our Australia unit! Side note: studying geography this year has given me lots of opportunities to talk about the beautiful diversity that God planned for our world. It has been really important to me to share with them about the indigenous people groups on each continent, and their cultures and history before (and after) white colonization.



The kids have also been LOVING this Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra game they've been playing throughout the year for music - they ask every school day, "Do we have music today??" :)

The kids usually play outside while I make lunch, and we eat around 1:00. After lunch, we finish up chores and schoolwork. Natalie is using A Beka for her 2nd grade math and phonics, so she works on those pages (mostly independently) during quiet time. I monitor her reading in a similar way to Zachary's, and she reads several short chapter books per week. She is really loving Junie B. Jones books and A to Z Mysteries lately! I also have her do some kind of journaling or creative writing twice a week. Here she is doing her book work outside on a nice day recently.



When Natalie finishes her work, she likes to do crafts or play with her Calico Critters or Shopkins. David loves to play with cars or 'guys' or Legos, or just swing on the swingset - here he is in a blanket on a cold morning on our new swing!


The kids have some independent play/rest time while I transcribe from home on Rev.com until 4:00, which has lately come to be known as Neighbor Kid Time! :) All the neighbor kids get out of school and come to play on our trampoline, ride bikes/scooters/hover boards, play with Beyblades and Nerf guns and hang out! I supervise while making dinner, cleaning up, or finishing up my Rev job.

David is Ironman, playing superheroes with two neighbors!

Beyblade battle!





My husband gets home around 5:30, and we chat while I cook, and then call the kids in around 6:00 for dinner. We finish up the day with jammies and these family devotions around 7:00 and then the kids are usually off bed by 8:00, so we can get up and do it again the next morning! :) After they are in bed, I finish up any Rev work I have left, hang out with my husband, fold laundry. Before I go to bed, I just click to open up the tabs for the next day's schoolwork and populate Zachary's Habitica list! So that's a day in my life!! Here is the link to my last year's Day in the Life post- so fun to look back and see what has changed

2017: My Day With a 9-, 7-, and 5-year-old. 

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