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Saturday, August 11, 2007

How We Do It All

It has been asked when what our day looks like and how we fit in everything so I'll share the "plan". This is a work in progress because this past week (see Week 3 Report) we focused more on homeschooling than keeping house. This coming week we'll be doing everything. It takes discipline and determination, the discipline part has been hard and has needed a lot of prayer and the determination part is something that has been built up to. The lack of discipline has built up the determination. I'm ready to make our lives easier, to build up our house instead of tearing it down.

I've tried many things in the past 1.5 years and the following routine fits us, instead of trying to make us fit into a "program" or follow rules that we've never had but have to start to fit another persons' ideal.

Night Before
Set up coffee pot, fill/run dishwasher, put empty laundry basket in den. Go to bed by 11:00 pm!

6:00 am Mom wakes up
Get coffee, empty dishwasher, shower, get dressed.
Until 7:00 I work with Danny to make his bed, get him dressed and get his clothes for the laundry basket.
Make breakfast.

6:30 am Kids wake up
*Danny has been rising between 6 am and 6:30 lately.
Camille has an alarm clock and is to get up, get dressed and make her bed, bring the day's laundry out to the basket in den.

7:00 am approximately - Breakfast
Eat breakfast.
Kids take the dishes to the sink and go brush their teeth and hair.
I clean up breakfast, put laundry in washer.
Camille does her daily weather journal.
*Still thinking of what to do during this time, something for memory work

7:20 am Circle Time Prayer
We sit in a circle and pray over each other and our day.

7:30 am Bible lesson
Recite the scripture 3x (Chapter, verse, scripture, chapter, verse) and discuss what the scripture means.
I read the Bible story, and Camille narrates, we discuss where necessary.
Camille answers the lesson's questions independently while I read Bible Stories for Tiny Tots to Danny.

7:55 am Daily Memory Work
Still under construction but the idea is to play a song about the books of the Bible and learn five at a time, using a chart to help us. I may move this to breakfast time.

8:00 am Math
Drill/memory work is done first, then I teach the lesson or review concepts with Camile. She works independently on the lesson's worksheets and I play with Danny concerning math concepts. On Friday there is not a math lesson, just Daily Mental Math worksheet.

8:45 am Independent Reading & Snack
Camille reads 1-2 pages to me and then she's to read the rest of the book or a predetermined amount of pages. If she reads an entire book, she records it in her reading log. During this time, I read to Danny- one book of my choosing and whatever else he wants me to read to him. *This is an area we may change as we get used to doing all our subjects.
Chores: Laundry gets moved to dryer.

9:15 am Handwriting
A page of Classically Cursive is done, I make sure Camille is okay with the formation of the letter and let her do the page independently. I work with Danny with something related, tracing his ABCs, etc.
Chores: Start working on room of the day's cleaning.

9:30 am Grammar and/or Spelling
On Monday I will give Camille her spelling words from Spelling Workout on flashcards, each day she'll read the work and spell it, flipping through the words so that she'll be ready for a test on Thursday after her spelling lesson. Mon-Wed is really for grammar, which we use First Language Lessons. We recite our current poem for memorization, do the lesson work which includes a little bit of copywork either the grammar rule/definition, copywork within the lesson or a writing activity such as writing a letter. This is free play time for Danny, depending on his demeanor. I need to spend the time with Camille during this time. I will probably use the Leap Frog DVDs during this time.

10:00 am French
Bonjour Les Amis is a children's video set about teaching french. We watch this together (all of us). The rest of the week's french activities are chosen to support what we watched with Bonjour Les Amis.
Chores: Fold laundry while watching, put in appropriate rooms when video is finished.

10:30 am History & Art or Science with Geography
This is a crucial time in our day, I have a lot of reading aloud to do with Camille so it is tricky with Danny. It is basically, do whatever I can to keep Danny busy time. On history days, we recite our Veritas Press History cards and then dive into our history lesson with includes an element of art, I will try to include Danny in this with a duplicate of whatever Camille is doing-we'll see how that works. On science days, we do our reading first and then will try to include Danny same as history or just give him a little science activity to do.

11:30 am Music Appreciation & Piano
We play our selection for the week during the day at various times. I play the lyrics and we sing the song everyday at this time. Once a week (day still undetermined) we will read more about the composer and do a biography and coloring page about the composer. After this Camille is to do her piano work for her private piano lessons, I have divided up her weekly piano work so it is manageable for her and while she does this, Danny helps me with getting lunch ready.

12:00 pm Lunch
After lunch Danny takes a nap, Camille is to finish any work that was deemed "homework" (if she goofs off or gets an attitude, her work turns into homework. Her decision, her consequence.)

12:30 pm - 4:00 pm
This is variable, free-time after the chores are done. I say 4:00 pm because I prefer to do a tidy up at 4:00 pm so that dh comes home to a toy-free den and some time I start dinner preparations at 4:00 pm.

6:00 pm Dinner and the rest
Clean up dinner dishes and spend family time until about 7:30 pm. Bath time, read-alouds and then if Camille wants she can stay up till 8:30 pm reading. Regular bedtime is 8:00 pm.

Friday is an extra day for school: Bible, math, reading and an informal state study happens. During the weekend, I prepare the for next week: reading the books we'll read, preparing each lesson or preparing myself for each lesson and doing what I need to like scheduling out our week, copying/photocopying, preparing items for experiments, etc.

All I did was take our regular life and put a little structure to it. Every day is different with its own challenges and blessings, we just go with the flow. The chore schedule has been a life-saver, I don't feel overwhelmed with all of the house on a given day, and I feel accomplished getting the one room clean. Daily chores are being constantly trained to do, how to leave a room, how to take care our things, etc. We are not down to the minute scheduled with the exception of lesson time, until we get into the routine of it, I'm using a timer. I know Camille, I know how she handles the work and she has buffer time within each lesson time ranging from 5-10 minutes. This is why I started the homework stipulation. It's not perfect, but it works for us and accomplishes so much for our family. Danny's behavior has improved greatly once I got my act together. This year is all about balance for us, achieving it and maintaining it and making it a daily part of our lives.



Anonymous said...

Wow, you are so organized! I wish I could stick to a schedule. I couldn't help but notice that you are constantly busy with kids or house or school. Do you schedule time for yourself? Like maybe after the kids are in bed?

Trivium Academy said...

Time for myself is usually after 8:00 pm, when I'll watch a little tv, come online, read a book or my Bible, do something with my husband like play a game or something.

I'm in the season of life where I have to take the moments where I can. I may get online for a few minutes, read a page or two of a book (now that I'm enjoying them again), call a friend or my mom for 5 minutes. I had to accept that this is the job God gave me and that if I'm going to do the best I can at it, at this time I do what I can with what I can. I've been off-balance with wants/have-tos for a while. I have time on the weekends, time at night and I may not spend a whole lot of time away from the kids but I enjoy that too.

The time will come when they are busy doing their thing and I'll have more freedom to explore more hobbies and other pleasures.

: ) Jessica

Erin said...

One little suggestion for Danny in the morning that you might find useful. You could pick something from your DH's church service, I'm thinking a responsive reading to use with Danny. For instance, we'll say to our kids, "The Lord be with you," and they respond, "And also with you." I don't know how much time you're wanting to devote to that kind of thing in the morning, but you could use those little things to prepare him for a fuller participation in your husband's worship service. My kids also have liturgical conversations with their toys; one train might say to another, "This is the day that the Lord has made!" Then other little wooden train will respond, "Let us rejoice and be glad in it." It is really a simple thing to do, not too taxing on mom.

Enjoy your blogging!

Dana Lynne said...

These are incredible posts (all of them lately!) and each one has great ideas that I can use in my very first year of homeschooling (we start in September). Thank you, Thank you! I don't know when you find the time to do all this, but I am amazed and encouraged to work harder, be more diligent in my own daily routine. Blessings, Dana

Angel said...

Hello, I don't remember how I found your blog but I've been perusing it today and I just had to say you're schedule is so very close to my own, and my children are 9 and 17!!! The bedtime has been pushed back and they don't get up until 7:00 am but otherwise it's pretty much the same. Just wanted to leave you some encouragement, I LOVE organizing and planning too!