I started a series last week answering Homeschool Questions that I get asked again and again… the first question was “What do our little people do during school time?” I showed you what my three pre-schoolers got up to during a regular school day and this led to this weeks question? What do my older kids do during school? Before we get going we have five scholars at the moment and five Sonlight cores… we unashamedly love and adore Sonlight and have used it for our entire homeschool career: one in grade K, grade 1, grade 3, grade 5 and grade 7.
Now I know if you don’t homeschool or even if you are a beginner homeschooler your school can look a lot like school at home. And I think folks might have this image that my children sit at desks surrounded by educational charts memorizing important stuff. Well I can safely say that from our experience, after eight years of homeschooling, that our school tends further and further from that image. The only clue to homeschooling that we have is that our house is stuffed with books and there are endless scientific creations on every kitchen surface.
In theory I aim to cover five basics each day: Bible Study, History, Science, Math and Language Arts, and to be fair these things do tend to get done… We begin in the morning and work our way through… we all start together and I help the youngest scholar until he is finished… that takes about half an hour for grade K, then he is free and I move on to the next one. He will be finished all the work he can do on his own and ready for help, half an hour later he is done and so on up the chain of scholars!!! Now sometimes this goes smoothly and we are all completely done by lunchtime but most days “something” comes up and we get distracted by something and it may take a little longer, which is fine. We always rest and read stories after lunch and those folk that aren’t finished school usually finish up then, before we head out to play.
There are other things that I think are equally important, yet they don’t seem to be top of most curriculum outlines, I aim to cover a bit of these daily too: outdoor time, arting: creating and great artists, music: appreciating it and making it, exercise as a way of life, chores and cooking. I really like that my kids can finish there “official school day” pretty quickly and then get on to the school of life, discovering, exploring and learning.
So this is what happens on a regular homeschool day at our house:
- Regular stuff: Like spelling…
- Things technical:
- And masterpieces:
Never enough reading!!! I made a promise to myself, long before we had kids, that I would never tell a child to stop reading or use reading as a threat, you know: “If you don’t… then no books at bedtime…” Never. I have suggested they stop reading to eat but mostly the rule “Never wake a sleeping baby” has carried over to “Never disturb a reading child.” In our house that’s what school looks like around here: Piles of kids under piles of books!!!
Now keep on asking your homeschool questions… my contact box is brimming with questions and I am just going to tackle them week by week!!! If I don’t get back to you with an answer to your question immediately then it is because I think it is such a good question that I am saving it for a post!!!