The First day of School
Well, thank the Lord, I survived the first day of school,
even though I was without my ergo pack for Olivia,
(it was left in the van, which went to work with daddy)
and I forgot to take the two year old to the toilet, and, well, anyway, it wasn't all perfect,
but I survived!
Truth be told, this was nothing short of miraculous,
because after being so sick, I still do not have anywhere near my normal energy level.
I get asked all the time how we do school, so I thought this would be a good time
to tell how we do it. I would venture to guess that no two home school environments
are exactly alike, but it may give someone an idea or encouragement in some way.
During school days, I get up at 7am, I am NOT a morning person,
so this is done through much prayer, which goes like this:
"O Lord, HELP ME PLEASE!"
Everyone still sleeping by 7:30 is roused, followed by breakfast at 8am.
We use a dinner bell, because our home is so big and I do not have much of a voice after all the coughing I have been through.
When the children hear the bell, which is an old time iron triangle,
they come running, wash up and sit at the table with hands in their lap.
We are still having simple summer breakfasts of bread or granola,
then we read a proverb from Kevin Swanson's Family Bible Study series.
Then we take prayer requests and pray.
Next, the children have chores, and I mind the two littlest ones.
I have given us some free time here, before we begin school,
so that I do not feel rushed; which is something that really stresses me out.
At 9:30 I ring the bell again, and the three boys begin school with a nature journal.
Bethany and Gabe play independently during this time,
and I either hold Olivia, put her in the ergo, or have her playing at my feet.
I think I will write in detail about a Charlotte Mason Nature Journal in another post,
so I will skip it here.
I have an hour charted for the Nature Journal,
which is science, hand writing, drawing, and composition all in one.
At 10:30 we go to Math.
I use Rod and Staff for grade school, and Teaching Textbooks for 7th on up.
We have an hour for this too. It allows me to wander around helping the boys,
then move on with Ben, who needs some one on one time with reading.
By the time this is over, they are all ready to move, so I send them on various errands up the stairs, outside, or just have them do some exercises for a few minutes.
Then we are back to do spelling before we break for lunch.
By this time, Gabe was overdue for some help in the bathroom (oops) and Olivia needs the mama. We work together to make sandwiches and lay out some fruit for lunch,
which we eat on paper plates.
Now, I have always avoided paper plates, they are very unromantic, but, being in need of shortcuts, they have become necessity.
By now, the preschool crowd needs my attention, so we have some free time until around 2pm,
when the littles all have naps.
I am working on training Olivia to nap at this time too. She is kinda spoiled from her illness,
so we have our work cut out for us.
Next we practice music and read, taking turns on the piano.
And then, WE'RE DONE!!!
Sort of, Brian and I decided to read History one evening a week after dinner,
and Literature one evening as a family, giving me time during the day
to tend the little ones without a breakneck schedule.
When Anna is around, she helps out with the little ones while I am working with the boys,
which is a tremendous help.
Today, she did "school" with them, much to their delight.
In afternoon play, Bethany was teaching school to Gabe...
we found it very amusing...notice her letters are all perfectly backwards.
Then Gabe got his turn with the white board and drew this dinosaur "all by myself."
I just love preschoolers.
It has been a wonderful, but completely exhausting week.
I am hoping to sleep all weekend,
in hopes of regaining more of my usual get up and go.
What ever happens, sleep or not, the Lord will be my strength.
I am so thankful He is a great God, otherwise, I never would have managed this week at all.
His grace has been sufficient.
His strength has lifted me when I am weak.
I could not possibly home school without Him.