15 October, 2009

Our Routine

I had promised earlier that i would post what our routine looks like now that we're back into school. We have gotten into a very comfortable, doable routine which is about to uprooted when the next small Weaver shows up. That's ok, babies come first. It's kind of like Eric said yesterday. I was sitting on the couch and he sat forward in shock and asked what the "bumps" on my legs are. He was horrified (dude, the bumps have been there for like 9 months, hello?) and i told him it's from carrying babies. Lots of 'em. He still looked rather freaked out until i asked him if he'd rather have cute legs or cute babies. Without blinking he sat back and and said with complete assurance that he'd rather have cute babies. His words? "Forget the cute legs." Sigh, yeah, i've had to come to that point to. So, back to my original point, babies are more important than cute legs or cute schedules. But for those who care, here's our schedule/routine for now.

I wake up about 6, get dressed (can't believe it either) and wake Eric and Emily up. At least i try and wake Eric up. Emily is up instantly, making her bed and getting dressed. She LOVES school and getting up early and can't wait for Mondays. She's like her daddy, Eric is like his mom. We both have to stare off into space for a while, debating if it's worth the hassle to get our day started. While they're getting up and coming down, i have my quiet time in the living room. We then grab our books and head to the table, often with a cup of tea or hot chocolate.

Spelling comes first, "All about Spelling" which i love so far, and we work on that together. They're working at the same level and it takes the longest. After that they work on math, (Math-U-See), language lessons, (Queen Homeschool), copywork, (Queen Homeschool) and cursive (Handwriting without Tears). Sometime in there i usually have them take turns sitting on the couch and reading a page aloud to me from their read-alouds. It sounds like a lot of work to get done in an hour and a half, but i'm a believer in short lessons in the elementary years. By that time the other kids are waking, usually around 8, and we eat breakfast and they do their morning and breakfast chores. Sometime midmorning, usually around 9:30-10:00, we sit down and read their YWAM missionary story for the week and they then work on their notebooking. That involves world geography, history, character quality, flag making and anything else that i think would go well with it. They often listen to music from the country we're reading about while they do notebooking. Each week is a little different, depending on the story and mama's mood. This week we had a scottish tea with scottish scones which of course includes pictures to go in their notebook, (along with bagpipe music) and i have a chinese recipe i'm planning on making next week. Each day they work on something different with their notebooks and of course listen to the story again. We also sometimes watch movies about the story (Through the gates of splendor, Chariots of Fire etc)and of course we get into big discussions about these missionaries etc. I bought the books "Material World", "What People eat", and "Children Like Me", to go with our studies. I HIGHLY recommend these books, homeschooling or not. The wonderful thing about the notebooking is that the 2 younger children, Zac and Josh, also are involved, which they love. Some days i also have them do an art project, or creative writing. Eric is constantly doing art on his own, Emily is constantly writing on her own. Never mind she gets half the words wrong, she just loves to write and is always bringing words to me for help. So i guess you could say we never really finish school. My kitchen is often a mess of papers and glue, markers and pencils, but it's a beautiful mess and i proudly display their creations.

By lunch we're more or less finished, although the children often get involved in other projects after that. I also have Eric and Emily doing a computer reading program which they HATE, but it was given and for now i think it's good for them. In the afternoon i have Eric and Emily sit down with a book and they have to read a chapter quietly to themselves. I just started that but i think it's a great idea. No hardship for Emily, she loves to read, but Eric wasn't so sure. Lucky for him, i was given some Horizon easy readers that are simple enough for him to read and enjoy, but gives him great practice.

I work with Zac, math and reading, sometime throughout the day. That's very relaxed and it doesn't always happen, but since he just turned 6 i don't feel any pressure. I have to say that i'm loving our school so far this year, but more than that, i love the time spent with the children. I love looking at their cute faces across the table and knowing that i will never regret the years walking and working with them. I love our heart to heart discussions, anything from babies to salvation to purity. I am constantly crying out for wisdom but i have found a key to peace in my homeschooling. Simply asking God to be in control and then trusting Him to do that. Not always easy but when i do that, and then make a choice to trust Him, there's a calmness and lack of stress. Homeschooling is a tremendous priviledge and one i never want to take for granted.

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