settling in

We survived the first week back in school, in fact, we thrived!  As I mentioned before, there are always those areas that need tweaking such as learning to tolerate distractions, refining character, and simply learning to let go of the freedoms of  summer.  Be that as it may, we are very happy with our current arrangement!  We’ve already figured out a groove to our days, which is a huge answer to my prior worries regarding scheduling.   Our day looks “typically” like below.  I must add that we are enjoying a slower pace , without really worrying much about the clock.  We finish when we finish. 

8:00~ Begin with the Pledge, and Bible reading

Gracyn works independently on personal Bible reading and devotions (she’s keeping a notebook this year), handwriting, and reading.  I’m trying out having her do written narrations this year to check for comprehension and to increase writing fluency. 

Meanwhile, Aidan begins spelling, copywork, phonics, handwriting, reading, poetry, and writing with me.  He takes a small break when this is all complete.  If Gracyn has finished her independent work, I will meet with her to give feed back.  Aidan will work on an educational game or enrichment with manipulatives.  If  Gracyn is still working, Aidan and I will move on to his history lessons.  By this time, Gracyn should be ready for one-on-one instruction.   Aidan is now sent off for a little play and recreation.

Gracyn begins spelling, grammar, vocabulary, writing mechanics, writing assignments, and depending on the mood of the house we may try to at least begin history. 

Around 10:00 or so, we take a break for snack.  I have to say that I laid down the law this year about sticking to a set snack time.  This is keeping all the requests for food out.  If you know my kids, it seems they ask for food or drink round the clock!  To sweeten the time, we all pile on the couch for Aidan’s read-alouds.  Everyone is settled and has hands occupied with the snack, which keeps them focused.  The kids have really enjoyed this time and ask for me to read more than scheduled, which I oblige, most of the time.  I don’t get to eat since I am reading, but having them so eager to hear a story makes missing a snack a small sacrifice. I can sneak a cracker or two before we start, usually.

When snack and read-alouds are over, Gracyn finishes her history.  Since she has worked so well, she is given a little free time…but often I ask her to help entertain her littlest brother for part of the time.

Aidan now has math.  We spend some time working together with hands-on lessons and then do the corresponding workbook pages with Singapore Math. 

Lunch time arrives!  We have a light lunch and take a brief rest.  Last year we had a 2 hour break after lunch, but this year, we will save the bulk of our free time until all the lessons are complete.  Now that the littlest one is growing up, our needs have changed. 

When lunch is over, the kids and I begin light chores.  I probably should have mentioned in the beginning that part of the daily routine is for the kids to wake, dress and take care of hygiene, make their beds (attempt if you are 3), and clean up their rooms.  Breakfast follows and that is a huge motivator to not dawdle!  Back to lunch chores! Each child must place his/her own dishes in the dishwasher and clean up the spot where they sat.  The kids tidy up the living area, that has surely been littered with toys by a certain 3 year old.  Gracyn vacuums the floors, while the boys “dust” with damp wet rags.  They really enjoy this! All of this takes about 15 minutes.  The kids spend a few minutes doing something else, while I take about 20 minutes to start laundry, plan the evening meal, answer emails, or calls that can’t wait until the afternoon.  I am refusing to answer the phone until after 3 this year…you’d be surprised, or maybe you wouldn’t, by how much phone calls eat away at our schedule. 

Gracyn has math after the lunch break.

Science comes next.  Aidan has his lesson, and then Gracyn follows.  When this is finished, the clock might read anywhere from 1:30-2:30 depending on the day.  The boys feign a naptime…in truth, they haven’t actually slept in weeks.  The rest of the my day is spent doing other chores, errands, and perhaps something fun like a swim.  The kids are free to be kids.  There is no homework to take any additional time away from family and fun.  The work is completed during the day and well practiced.  Gracyn’s read-alouds are saved for bedtime.

This is our day…at least until September, when Jasper begins preschool two days a week.  I’m already dreading the drop off and pick up….which is telling me something about how I may decide to keep all three home next year.  That eats 30 minutes a day, in the carpool line.  We’ll cross that bridge in time.

Gracyn begins gymnatics this week, which is an activity she has been bugging me about all summer.  Aidan will be signing up for fall soccer soon!  The kids will continue on with children’s choir and Covenant Kids on Wednesday nights at church.   And that’s enough.



  1. Good job Teach! Praise the Lord that the scheduling bu,ps are smoothed. Bumpy around here today. Will starts tomorrow, He will dress out for PE this year and have a locker!!

  2. Wow, I am so impressed! I am not sure if I home schooled my kids I could be that structured…they would be lucky if I got dressed during the day! Kudos to you for taking on such a big task as teaching your children, but who better to learn from!!! I know that you are so glad that things have started off so well!

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