I would never suggest you put your child on a schedule. There’s no reason to schedule your day into increments of time. That’s the path to stress and burn out as you find interruptions and life intervening and you find yourself and your children unable to keep the schedule time and time again.
However, I do have a child who doesn’t transition well. He’s a child who often will yell, scream or cry about an unexpected transition or responsibility. I’ve finally realized that often his upsets and unhappiness don’t stem from a heart of rebellion but from a heart that really is stunned to realize that I expected him to clean up/do a school subject, etc. So for the sake of him, and to the joy and peace of our home, we’ve established a simple routine. Through this, I’ve seen that the children all do better when they realize what my expectations of them are.
I can’t give you advice on what your daily routine should be or how to implement it because I don’t know what your goals, your children’s goals and your must-dos are. So, instead I would just urge you to keep your days mostly consistent because knowing you have a routine will help the children to focus and have more creativity. Instead of giving you direct advice here, I’m going to share our routine in the hope that it helps you see what a relaxed daily routine looks like.
Everyone in our house gets up at staggered times. I try to get up before Hubby leaves for work, so I can say goodbye to him and start my morning with blog-related work. (For something that’s not a money maker, the blog demands much time and attention 😉 ) However, usually the children are up by 9:30 or so if we haven’t kept them up too late the night before.
Once we get settled with breakfast, the Firecracker and Rose are ready for history. We do our history on the computer, using what Rose calls “the best history program ever.” It’s the Veritas self-paced history we reviewed for the Crew a couple of months ago, and you can read my full review here. Rose asks for it every single day, so she really does think it’s “the best history program ever.”
After we do our history lesson, we read the pages from the optional literature pack that goes with the history. When I realized this was going to be something the children were going to want to do long-term, I bought the literature package to go with the history course.
Finally, we finish history and we read our Bibles. We have a routine with a devotional, reading chronological chapters from the Bible, a prayer time and work on Community Bible Study and AWANAs books. We also sometimes work on things related to We Choose Virtues or Happy Kids Songs as part of our character education at Bible time. All four children participate in different aspects of this time.
Unless we do an activity at Bible time that lasts until lunch, I always do read-alouds after Bible time. We choose chapter books, picture books and sometimes science or history related books. These books are chosen by the children from our bookshelves. The little kids tend to build with legos, play with ponies or superheroes and color during read-aloud time. Rose and Firecracker sometimes like to draw or color while they listen to the books. Monkey and Owlet come over to see pictures when we’re reading a picture book.
Then, we have lunch, and on a day where we’re at home all day I usually give baths after lunch. I bathe the girls together and then bathe the boys together so that during bath time, I can work with children on individual subjects. Most often these are review curricula that I can only work with one student at a time. For example, right now those curricula are UberSmart Math Facts and Essential Skills Advantage. This is also a great time for free play or individual projects (like Angry Birds paper dolls or printable community helpers) and for me to accomplish some housework.
Once everyone is bathed and clean, we usually have a snack because everyone seems to be hungry all the time!! Then, we have a little preschool time. I’ve tried various things, and right now we’re doing Easy Peasy Getting Ready 1 (because the little kids like the videos and the little printable crafts and worksheets) and supplementing it with books and crafts off Pinterest.
Once we’ve done all the preschool time we want, we spend the rest of our afternoon either working on a review that Firecracker and Rose are working on together (like when we did Moving Beyond the Page) or working on whatever our interest-led unit/activities are right now. Our projects on our to-do list for the next two or three weeks involve: (1) alligator and crocodile lapbook, (2) making pemmican, (3) making a model Alamo, (4) making a shoebox covered wagon and (5) doing Bunnicula related crafts and activities.
At some point, I usually look at the clock and notice that I need to get started cooking dinner and that we need to straighten up a little before Hubby gets home, so we do that. Then, the children often watch a little television, play DS and Kindle, play with their toys, and relax. Sometimes Rose especially will still be feeling a creative impulse that she needs to draw or write with so that she can relax and move on to the evening with her Daddy.
That’s basically what a day in our house looks like. What does a day in your house look like?
This blog post is part of the Schoolhouse Review Crew’s Back to Homeschool Blog hop. If you’re interested in reading more “Back to Homeschool” themed posts, there are some great ones to be found at these blogs:
Jennifer @ Chestnut Grove Academy
Crystal @ Tidbits of Experience
Jennifer @ Milk & Honey Mommy
Dawn @ Guiding Light Homeschool
Monique @ Living Life and Learning
Erin @ For Him and My Family
Lisa @ A Rup Life
You can also click the banner below to get back to the main blog hop webpage and continue exploring! I hope you’ve enjoyed reading along, and if you have any questions about relaxed homeschooling and how to plan for it, just let me know in the comments, and I’ll see if I can put together a post addressing those questions in the next week or two 🙂