Gosh, time passes so quickly! It hardly seems I've been away from my blog for four days! Joy and I have both been sick over the weekend with the nasty cold stuff. We're still not back 100%, but feeling a bit better.
Today's is Tammy's (Lattes and Lollypops), Homeschool Open House. I really had hoped that we would be far enough along on our Geography project...our study of India....to share today, but it looks like it will be next time. Our Homeschool Group's Geography Fair is March 3rd, so I KNOW it will be ready in March! :)
Instead today, I thought I'd share a typical homeschool day with you. I was thinking that it might be interesting to people that have no idea what a homeschooler's day is like. What our day is NOT like is a typical classroom. I know years ago, I pictured myself standing in front of my little students, beginning with the pledge, and going over the calendar and weather, and actually "standing in front of them teaching". Actually our homeschooling day is just a natural part of our day. It is more of an ongoing learning atmosphere that is always present throughout our day. Since we've homeschooled for 15 years now, it really just feels as natural as getting dressed and everything else we do.
We begin our mornings with some basic chores followed by breakfast. If I can sneak a peek at my computer at any point during this time, I usually do, otherwise, it's lunchtime before I get another chance. At the breakfast table, I'm usually finished first, so I begin reading aloud to Joy while she finishes up her breakfast. We've always placed high importance upon reading and reading aloud to our children, even through the high school years. As a matter of fact, if I had to pick the one thing about our homeschooling day that I love best....that's it....READ ALOUD TIME. It builds bonds of togetherness, not to mention the listening skills it requires and develops! After awhile (usually after she finishes eating), we move into the living room, where we either snuggle together in a chair, or Joy lies, sits, or props in more positions than I knew ever existed...(but she's listening!) As a matter of fact, I ask her to tell back to me (or narrate) what she just heard, or at times, I'll have her ask me questions from what I read. After all, she has to listen to know what to ask me! As a matter of fact, I find that she listens well to try to find a question that I might not remember or know! lol! After our read alouds are done (there are usually at least two..sometimes three), then we move onto our oral activities such as spelling and grammar reviews and memorization work. From there, Joy usually works on her independent work such as workbooks and notebooks (Math, Handwriting and Copywork for example) as well as her personal literature readings and Bible reading.
Again, some of this is done at the breakfast table, some at her desk, and some sitting or lying on the couch or recliner. By the time all of this is done, it's usually lunch time.
After lunch we work on any ongoing projects or experiments such as Science, Geography and Creative Writing and practicing her dance, piano and taekwondo. And even free time is spent learning as Joy loves to post on her blog in which case she is practicing her spelling, writing and grammar skills as well as her typing and computer skills. (She learned to type from a computer software program Kids Typing Instructor).
She has a few penpals that she corresponds with as well. So there again, she's practicing her handwriting and working on that spelling and grammar again! I really have found it true that if I gave my kids free time, they will spend it on something in which they're learning (I just don't tell them they're learning)! Then again, you know we don't have cable or Direct TV and only get a couple of channels, so the TV is not on, unless we are watching a DVD that we have received from Netflix. It's amazing what that does for creativity! lol!
She was working on a sewing project (the one for my mom's birthday) the day I took all these pictures.
And then is our homeschooling day over? Well Monday evenings, she has taekwondo for 2 hours. Tuesday evenings, she spends 1 hour in dance. Wednesday evenings she spends at church for about an hour. Thursday evenings, she spends 1 1/2 hours in dance and Friday evenings, she spends 2 more hours in taekwondo. So there's plenty of extra-curricular (and P.E.) activities to keep her busy (of her choice by the way).
Then every night, you can usually find Joy falling asleep with a book in her hand! If I remember correctly, this particular night was a book on friendships.
In addition, every Tuesday afternoon we spend 1 1/2 hours with our local homeschool group for "gym". It's a time for the kids to play together (of all ages). There are many game tables such as ping pong, air hockey, foos ball, pool, as well as basketball court, roller racers, and if they want to play a board game, there are those to choose from as well. And the moms get to visit while we watch the kids. I love our group...or our homeschooling family...as I call it! Once a month, the kids have recitation and skate day. Recitation is a time when they recite, share, or perform something in front of our group. When we finish, we skate in the gymnasium.
And scattered among these activities named above are field trips and parties scheduled by our group that we attend. When Colt was young, I remember being asked if I worried about socialization skills, and honestly, I did sometimes when he was little. I think it was more fear of the unknown than anything. Now I laugh, and say, "Yeah, I worry we do TOO much of it...I need to say No to some things!" lol! Besides, I found out that Colt doesn't have a bit problem socializing and Joy never has! She was born talking and doing! And one day, when this house is quiet, I just might be wishing for this hectic schedule and socializing! :)
Here's Joy showing you our home library! I told you we love books around here! Although we do sell some of our books to make way for new ones, it's hard to depart with some! My kids know my system of keeping the books, but I doubt anyone else could find a particular book! I have my "Geography Section", "History Section", "Resource Section", "Creative Arts Section", etc... One day, I hope to organize our books in a way that more closely resembles a library shelf! Until, then we'll just do it mom's way! (By the way, Jason built me these shelves...below in the cabinets are craft and school supplies). This is in our loft area.
I hope you enjoyed this little peek into one of our homeschooling days.