Homeschooling can get pretty crazy, right? With more than one, two, three or more children in the mix, how do you find peace during a school week? In my first post about planning for peace, I talked about clearing the calendar with things we really don't need and re-evaluating our "have to's".
In my second post about planning for peace, I talked about planning around your quiet time. In this post, I'm going to talk about grouping. Grouping simplifies. I like simplicity, don't you?
Let's see how to make the most of the school day and plan for peace.
I know what you're thinking... "How can you plan for peace?" "Really, I'm a homeschool mom and there isn't much peace in this house." I feel that way sometimes too and that's why I'm paying close attention this semester to implementing some things I did last year which helped promote a peaceful home during the homeschool week.
I just have one question: how many "things" are on the calendar (paper or in your head) for this week? Go look. I'll wait! Suprised? I was. Let's take an honest look at our calendars, Ladies, and take an inventory of our goals for our children, our family, our homes, and ourselves,
Let's learn to plan for peace instead of chaos, rest instead of weariness, strength instead of weakness, a sound mind instead of that of a scattered brain. This cannot be achieved through a miracle supplement. This is about making an effort to plan down time. Step 1 in planning for peace: Clearing the calendar.
What are you learning this November, besides the routine stuff? What beauty are you pulling out from the season around you so that you and your children can feast on delicacies that November has to offer? Forget turkeys and pilgrims! They're overdone! (For those who are loyal turkey and pilgrim fans, see our turkey activity for this year here and you can snag my Pilgrim Story here! )
Today's post is about feasting on poetry and nature in this seemingly short month before the Christmas season.
What is planning week? How do I implement it? Will it make our school year too long? Do I really need it? All of these are good questions to ask when considering whether or not to implement planning weeks throughout your homeschool year. I chose to do try and I love it! Let's talk about to have planning weeks during the school year or not.
Quiet. Peaceful. Restful. Love was in the air the day we began what Sarah McKenzie, author of the blog Amongst Lovely Things calls Morning Symposium, love for learning, that is.
Homeschool isn't always easy, but when the day goes well, you & your children get the privilege of feasting on the morsels of discovery & knowledge!
Here I am focused more on developing the relationships I have with my littles & developing the hearts of these little people God has lent me with more emphasis than academics.
Yes, we're learning, but I'm cultivating hearts & minds. Want to put the "loveliness" in your day of learning? Morning Time helps you start on the right foot! Keep reading.
We've implemented Morning Time (as we call it) this year & already I cannot do without it! You must try it too! Let me tell you, my kindergartner has a natural love for learning- when she wants to learn- which is not normally during school time. Ha! A resistant learner is detrimental to me- a huge blow & obviously I assume it is always my fault. "I killed her love of learning by homeschooling her!" Oh, the disappointment that ensues. I love how Sarah helps us moms get our homeschool started out by putting the lovely things first. :)
Maybe you feel the same way some days? But since we've implemented a morning time, I see an excitement about learning for the day. Morning time helps cultivate a "liturgy of love" as Sarah calls it here.
It's easy to begin implementing a morning time into your school day & it will help you teach from rest & help restore peace in your home!
Questions to Ask:
1. Think about what your children would like to learn the most- outside of normal content area diligence.
2. What do you want everyone in your family to do together at this time? What do you all need to focus on?
3. How long should it be? (Consider ages of the youngest littles.)
Our Current Morning Time:
I chose to include art & music study into our morning time with virtue stories. My children are very young & we're working on Charlotte Mason habit training. It's important for me to read stories & poems of examples of virtue to them to place hints of good habits in their minds. You can read more about habit training with littles here on Simply Charlotte Mason.
We also focus on singing a couple hymns. When you're praising, it truly is helping keep your focus on God & puts a song in your heart for the day!
Did I mention I have littles? Yeah. So, I'm keeping Morning Time short & sweet. To do that, I've implemented a loop for some of the things in our basket. You can read more about looping on Sarah's site here & even watch a podcast about how to make it successful.
Looping means I take the things we want to do during our SHORT morning time (littles have short attention spans) & I loop them from day to day. We do a hymn every day. We do loop the rest of the time (usually one or two other things).
Here's our Loop for Morning Time right now:
- Read a page from The Year at Maple Hill Farm
- Read a virtue poem or short story from Children's Book of Virtures
- My emergent reader reads to her sister a phonics book from Fun Tales
- Work a puzzle together. (We have a lot of large floor puzzles & geography puzzles.
- Practice tracing a picture from a book. (pre-req for map work later)
*So again, we don't do all of these everyday. We just do what we have time to do in the time allotted. I allot 30 minutes for morning time, but really, I expect it to last no more than 15-20. Sarah talks about time allotted in her book Teaching from Rest (which I cannot do without). *PS. This is not a plug for her book, I just LOVE IT that much & want you to know about how it has helped our family! :)
Your morning time or whatever you choose to call it might be longer than mine or shorter for that matter. You decide what time it starts & what you will do, but I really think you should try one. You may choose to just do a couple of things or not even use a loop. Loops are optional, people! :) The important thing is to plan & take it slow. Don't try to do too much.
Focus on the lovely things first!
May your mornings be brighter & your hearts be lighter! I'd love to hear your comments about your morning time & what you do!!!
Make sure you subscribe to my page! I'm going to be sharing with you our Morning Time plans in the making for the next six weeks! Yes, we've already been in school 6 weeks! The joy of starting in the summer! :)
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