Because of the COVID Quarantine and everyone now schooling at home, I thought I’d share a little about our usual homeschool day to see if it will help bring structure to your day!

As I have studied homeschool families over the years, I have seen that different families start their days in different ways.  Like playing a certain song, starting at an exact time, etc. The options are as unique and abundant as the families.  This is a huge benefit of homeschooling.  We all can do it in ways that bless our own families and meet our own needs. And now that YOU are homeschooling, you can bring a uniqueness to your own school!

We don’t start with music because Bodie is very sensitive to music.  Something in his autism makes music seem like he’s hearing nails on a chalkboard.

So, we begin our day with the CNN 10 youtube video playing on our Apple TV.  It calls the kids together, and they rush to the living room as they don’t want to miss it. This podcast is recorded daily, and it covers worldwide events.  We are a conservative family, and I feel that the podcast doesn’t heavily lean to either political side.  I feel that through this we are more global citizens.  We see the poverty and corruption in certain countries in Africa and the political strife that is going on in Great Britain with the Brexit talks.  My kids aren’t just isolated here in rural Idaho. They know what is going on in the world.

Right now, the podcast gives a COVID-19 update and then focuses on traveling around the world.  This morning, the focus was on the Aomori Prefecture in Japan, which was where I lived growing up! It was so fun to see bits and pieces of my childhood on the screen.

After the podcast, we move onto our Bible time with prayer and a devotion.  Over the years, our devotion time has taken many forms… reading about missionaries, a study on spiritual armor, the meaning of the Lord’s Prayer, completing AWANA work, and the study of hymns, to name a few.  Typically, we also have a scripture passage that we focus on for memory work. When I brainstorm during the summer, I ask God to lead me to what the kids need to learn each year, so it always varies.  And when I am in between plans, we read a daily devotion guide. Right now, we are focusing on Holy Week and have a few books we are reading through. 

We then move on to the “Beauty” part of our day which means we study either poetry or classical art or a composer. Sometimes we even recite Shakespeare scenes together or practice our own art techniques. Each day of the week focuses on a different aspect, so I don’t feel stressed to get it all done in a day.  Pam Barnhill’s Morning Time Plans helps guide me in how to prepare our morning time.  She also shares blank planners to help map out your own morning times.  Her service is so important to me, as I don’t have to hunt WHAT to study.  (She even helps guide me on the scripture passages we use for memory!)

After our “beauty” time, we study our history lesson.  And then we read our read-aloud book.  We have read through so many books over the years! It is absolutely precious time to me.  Conversations about these books continue into all aspects of our lives.  And if nothing else, I know that I have taught my kids to love books.

At the end of our Morning Time, we break out into our separate studies, which I pre-scheduled and printed using LessonTrek

Morning Time is my favorite time of day.  We are all together learning, discussing, and usually laughing.  I am going to miss this so much when we finish homeschooling.  Depending on Riley’s school and work schedule, this might have been Riley’s last year with us. I can’t believe it has gone so fast.  It is such a precious time to me!

If you are interested in the resources I have mentioned, here they are.

 Pam Barnhill offers a completely free Four Week Morning time here.  I purchased the yearly subscription because I love it so much.  She has plans for each season, holidays, plans focused on different books, plans for preschool or older students.  SO many options!  We were going to follow a plan this summer on the Olympics, but we’ll just follow that NEXT summer. 

 I plan out the kids’ school days with Lesson Trek.  Right now, they have a 14-day free trial.  I add in what classes each student is taking ahead of time, and then on the weekends, I map out what they need to focus on each day.  Kids can either log in to the site and see what they need to do, or, like my kids,. (since I limit their technology) print out each week and check off the blocks on the paper.