Sunday, February 23, 2014

Home Schooling

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I don't actually "home school" but I do my version of it. What does it entail? And why do I do this?

I am a stay at home mom for a 5 and 3 year old. My oldest son is in kindergarten 4 days a week until 12:45. During that time, I like to make certain that my younger son is getting good quality time with me. This isn't always the case, and recently I've been disappointed in my being engaged enough, but I am back on track!  My youngest son doesn't go to preschool and won't go to school until he is 4 1/2 (or so). I want to make certain that I am still enriching his life and offering him things that are happening at preschool.
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How do I schedule the week?

Every Sunday night I write my "lesson plan." This gives me a calendar glimpse of what the week has in store for us. Then I distinguish our days. Some days stay the same every week.
For Example: 
Monday- Baking Day
Tuesday- Painting Day
Wednesday- Hiking Day
Thursday- Puppetry Day
Friday- Cleaning Day

Within those days, I will add additional things that I would like to focus on.
 For Example: the alphabet with my youngest son and numbers and math with my older son. I always have more baking and cooking time then just on Monday. I also do things like laundry that I have my youngest separate all the laundry into piles by person.  

I also write out my "circle time" plan for my youngest. After dropping my older child off at school, I head home and start our "school." We do about 20-30 minutes of circle. 

We start with this morning song:

Good Morning

Good Morning Dear Earth (hands as if holding earth on abdomen)
Good Morning Dear Sun (stretch arms above head in a circular arc)
Good Morning Dear Trees (stretch arms to side, like tree branches)
And the Flowers Everywhere (hands holding flowers on ground)
Good Morning Dear Beasts (hands as if petting a dog,etc..)
And the Birds in the Trees (hands “fly” away like birds flying away)
Good Morning Dear You and Good Morning Dear Me. (hands reaching to each other, then hands cross over our chest)

We then continue with a morning verse and a story. This week we are reading the Sun Egg. 
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After our story we have a snack and start working on our baking day. I usually choose a bread to make so he is able to knead the bread. Some days I will do muffins or the like. 
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We then will take a walk around our neighborhood for some sunshine and outside time. This week we plan on spending time at our creek. 

I tend to base my days on being outside. We enjoy nature walks and finding gems of places in our little town. Last week we were busy "fishing" in our pond (with a harmonica of course). 
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The one thing I have found by keeping a consistent rhythm is that my children thrive off of a rhythm and I do also. It's great to see them contribute to our family life and to see them learn in ways that are through every day ways.  It's also nice to see them gain confidence in areas that I would some times just like to hurry through. It's a lesson in breathing for me! 
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Here are the books that I am using this week. I have loved all three of these for being guides into our rhythm:
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