Yesterday, we started “school.” Above, you will see our “school.” I am particularly fond of the container of supplies, because I love supplies, and because they are all new and pretty, and Fefe has not bitten off all the erasers (yet.)
Today, I will tell you about our schedule.
We start our day at around 6:30 AM. The kids need to do the following things before “school” starts:
- Get dressed with teeth brushed.
- Clean up their bedrooms.
- Feed themselves a decent breakfast, and clean up their dishes.
School begins at 8:30. Bridget and Lane sit at the school table with their “to-do” list, and get started. If they have questions, they ask me. They have lots of questions, because they don’t read directions.
At 10:30 we take a break.
From 11:00-11:30 Lane practices his cello, and Bridget continues doing schoolwork.
From 11:30-12:00 Bridget practices her piano, and Lane continues doing schoolwork.
From 12:00-1:00 The kids have the option of continuing schoolwork, or reading a book. This is when I
prep lunch check Facebook, Instagram, try to fit in a shower, or clean up the mess Fefe has made. I also try to remember about Jack, who has been on a tablet most of this time. Oh yeah, him.
At 1:00 We eat lunch. After lunch, I insist that the kids go outside to play until around 3:00 PM.
From 3:00-4:15, the kids are allowed to use their tablets or play Minecraft on the computer.
All in all, the kids have about four hours of “school” per day, if you count the half hour that they are obligated to practice music. I feel like that is a really reasonable amount for children to spend on schoolwork. People often complain that there is a lot of wasted time during the traditional school day. I don’t think teachers intentionally waste time, and most are not particularly bad at time management and organizational skills. It’s just that, when you have 28 children in a room – things escalate. Transitioning from one thing to the next takes time. Dealing with kids who are misbehaving takes time. Addressing the needs of the kids who are slower learners takes time. My kids are allowed to work through their materials at their own pace. If they finish the week’s work on Wednesday, then they’re done. When they are working, it doesn’t matter if they want to chat with each other a little. They don’t need to ask me if they can go pee. They can get up and grab a banana if they are hungry, or a drink if they are thirsty. Allowing that type of freedom in a traditional classroom would never work. Today, I have two of my nieces here until late this afternoon. I won’t need to load them up for carpool, and I won’t need to force my kids to do the “required” one hour or more of homework tonight. So, that is an advantage to homeschooling.
So far, so good.
Quote of the day, from Bridget, doing her religion work:
“I don’t believe in Adam and Eve. The story makes no sense. Seriously.”