ED (now in kindergarten) is still the first one up most days. She and I sit down together to eat at the dining room table and I read her a book or two.
We then make our way into the homeschool room and she reads one of her phonics readers to me.
We work on calendar work (at the moment). We have a free daily calendar printable here.
The big words she’s copying from is from our Free Math Lapbook – an activity I made for her last spring and that she’s continuing to work on this year!
We play math games.
We (might) read a Five in a Row book and do an activity.
She often works on her handwriting.
She does a science activity with me (at some point later in the day). (This can also be geography, Montessori stuff, etc.)
At some point she works on piano for 10 minutes (I usually come to help her for part of that).
She draws, plays games and does other things while the others are doing their schoolwork… she usually joins in when we do collection (history/geography — see below). She also usually joins in when we do journal writing.
3rd grade & 5th grade Day:
Read aloud time — both DD and LD read their own books while they eat breakfast (generally I’m in the homeschool room doing things with ED by that point). I often have science magazines and stuff out on the table as well and they’ll grab this. I’ve also asked LD to read Murderous Maths this year (if he’s interested/engaged).
Rotations — We just started this a week ago or so and this is working wonderfully so far! I bought each of the kids a timer and they spend 10 minutes on typing, 10 minutes on German and 10 minutes on piano.
Math — They have separate work to do. I mark off the problems and help them as needed.
Writing/Spelling/Grammar — Generally one of these gets done each day. I usually work with both of them (or all three of them) and then they do their own thing. (Oh, well except in Spelling. They are at different points in the curriculum. We use All About Spelling which we love.)
Lunch — I read our novel aloud while we eat. (Last year we read the first 3 books of the Chronicles of Narnia. We’ll probably continue on with The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, but at the moment we’re half way through Because of Winn Dixie.)
Collection — This is the time that all of us come together to work on our project or activity for the day. Generally, this is a science or history unit. We bounce back and forth… often focusing on just one subject for a week or so. We haven’t yet started our upcoming units (Simple Machines Gizmos and Gadgets or India). At the moment their doing a CDC science project (more about that in an upcoming post). We generally do some reading, a worksheet and an activity/work on a project for collection.
There are some subjects I plan to spend extended time on just once a week — art, music, Science Olympiad or critical thinking, and German.
Do I include “fun” activities for the kids?
When we first used workboxes, I used to try to find some fun, unique activities to put into the workbox. As we moved away from the workbox system (going from one drawer/subject to the next in a set order) and just followed the rhythm of the day, I found I was spending my energy mostly on making collection (science/history/geography) creative, hands-on and engaging. The kids don’t ever have anything “fun” in their workboxes per se.
That said, I do try to rotate board games, card games and other activities on one of our small tables in the homeschool room. That way I bring in some of the educational games we have (like Dino Math Tracks, 10 Days Across Africa, Set, Lab Mice, and other games we have in our cabinet. See the games category for lots of the games I’ve reviewed.) The kids invariably find the time to play board games and card games during the down times of the day!
How much time does homeschooling take?
This is actually a tough question to answer. I am usually busy with the kids between 8:30am and 3pm. But, the kids are not constantly working the entire time and the older kids start later than my youngest. I might be working with one while the other two disappear and go play. I’d say we do school for 3-4 hours most days, not including the time they/we spend reading. Sometimes less, sometimes more.
Related Posts: I’ve written quite a number of these posts about our ‘typical day’ from time-to-time. These are listed in reverse chronological order:
The Day in the Life of a Homeschooler –– (kids would have been 9, 7, 4)
Our Week’s Round-up (8, 6, 4)
The Realities of Homeschooling (8, 6, 4)
Our General Homeschooling — a post about our general homeschool schedule/day. What things we cover aside from the units I so often post about. (Kids — ages 8, 6, 3 1/2)
Starting Our New Routine — (8, almost 6, 3 1/2)
A Typical Day with Tots and PreK – A post from when the kids were about 14-18 months or so, age 3 and age 5.
Other Homeschooling Questions Answered posts:
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