Playing along with the series A Homeschool Day in the Life at Simple Homeschool.
A little over four years ago, with only a four-year-old at home, I wrote one of these posts. Two days later, four years ago today, Valentine's Day, Clark went to school for the last time.
Much has changed since those days before we were all home. I would never want to paint a perfect picture. There are challenges in the choices we make today, just like there were years ago. But recently when I was feeling overwhelmed by life and all the things out of my control, my husband asked me what I needed to let go of, and I realized there was nothing I'd change, nothing I'd let go of. Except for worry over what I can't control. That can go anytime.
A lot has also changed in how we homeschool. Each year we try some things, keep and quit some things. Right now we're in a good space of feeling like we know what works and what doesn't. We also know this will change, as it does, as they grow and need and want more or less. We'll need to readjust. Find out what works and doesn't again.
All along, we've found a basic rhythm, with a little structure, works well. We need days at home, community classes, play dates, and park days. We need choice, a little encouragement here and there when we find a challenge, and time. Time to transition and time to learn at our pace. Patience needs to be present most days- mine and theirs. As does the outdoors, technology, and a lot of books.
Here is a typical stay at home day in our current life. If we're lucky, these happen once or twice a week.
5:00 AM- One of my many alarms goes off. If it's a Monday, I'm more likely to get up right after the first or second one. I quickly feed the mewing cats tangled around my feet and head for the room furthest from my sleeping family. I find the Viber app on my phone and call my best friend in Germany. It's 11 AM her time, and we have a little over an hour before she has to get her son from school.
6:15 AM- Work time- most mornings I am up by now. I create agendas for the writing circles I facilitate, do bookkeeping for the same organization, do our bookkeeping, write, read, center and organize myself and needs my attention.
8:00 AM- The kids get up and immediately the house fills with chatter. We make breakfast, sit down to eat, and talk about what we want to do today. If I remember we make a list. (Recently we started keeping said lists in one book. Seems logical. Only took four years.)
8:30 AM- I take the dog for a walk, and the kids play
9:00 AM- 3 PM- This time is for what the kids are interested in and want to learn: games, art, writing, audiobooks, read-aloud, silent reading, outdoor play, math, the list goes on. Anything goes.
Right now Sophie (7) loves Math Seeds and ABC Mouse, doing science experiments, reading with me, writing in her journal, and making things for her dolls. She also loves climbing trees, playing with her brother, and drawing.
Clark (10) loves creating simple machines (and not so simple ones) with Lego, Minecraft, Khan Academy, playing board games, cooking, writing with me, and building forts in the backyard.
Yesterday, two of us were feeling under the weather, so our day was spent making Valentines, playing Risk and Outfoxed, reading The Nevergirls and The Unfinished Angel, playing outside, doing Khan A. math, and drinking a lot of tea.
3 PM- 5 PM- Screentime or playtime. This is when I check email, work, sit, and make dinner.
5:00 PM- 6:30 PM- Chores and family dinner. By this time my husband is home from teaching or has wrapped up his work-at-home time. Everyone pitches in to help feed the animals, straighten up, and get dinner on the table. We linger at the dinner table, talk, play the question game (If you were an animal, what animal would you be today?), and help each other clean up.
7:00 PM- Family time or outside time. Depending on the season, we head outside, watch tv, or play games.
8:00 PM- Bedtime routine- This mostly consists of me reading to one or both kids. Depending on how tired I am and how much we're into the book we're reading, this lasts twenty minutes to an hour.
9:00 PM- If I'm not asleep, I head downstairs to catch up with Big Clark, catch up on The Daily Show or lately, SNL, and unwind.
10:00 pm- If I want to get up by 5 AM tomorrow; I need to get into bed. I listen to podcasts or read.
While I'm not a huge lover of Valentine's day, the last four years, it has become an important anniversary. Today I'll get our annual dozen donuts, we'll exchange valentines with our playgroup, and hopefully us girls, who are not feeling great, will get better rather than worse.
Today we begin another year at home together. Feels like a good day to celebrate love.