Homeschool Routines: January 2015

Hello, January! This is the week that we start settling back into our routines–some familiar and some completely new.

Over the Christmas break, it became crystal clear that Kate (39 months) is ready for a bit more of a challenge when it comes to “formal” learning. She has been absolutely amazing about playing independently while Addie (1st grade) and I do lessons, and she has picked up an insane amount of memory work while being in the same room. BUT, she has also been gravitating toward the basket of scratch paper and crayons and asking me how to build words using her magnetic letters.

We’re moving up from Tot School to Homeschool Preschool, and I’m really excited. (Three is one of my favorite ages!)

I recently came across some of my classroom-planning notes from the summer I taught 3s & 4s at a local Mother’s Day Out, and that’s been helpful for me to double-check that I’m not forgetting any major component she’d be getting at preschool. At the MDO, our areas of learning included:

  • Art
  • Blocks
  • Books (Classroom Library)
  • Home-living
  • Music
  • Nature/Science
  • Puzzles/Manipulatives

I had already decided that I wanted to be more intentional with both girls and art this spring, and I knew we’d need to add something with science since our (awesome) weekly co-op ended in November. (Enter our family pass to the San Antonio Botanical Garden; I forsee lots of field trips with magnifying glasses and sketchpads in our future!)

Blocks, puzzles, and manipulatives are already covered in our weekly toy rotation/tot trays. We recently rearranged the girls’ bedroom to make way for bunk beds, leaving room for their toy kitchen (previously stored in their closet) and two new bookshelves. Kate has been playing “kitchen/tea partyrestaurant” pretty much non-stop since we made that change last week! (I also want to be more intentional about including both girls in ACTUAL housework, too. Why limit them to pretend when the real objects are available in the other room?)

New play area in our daughters' room |Lone Star Signers

The new play area in our girls’ room has a play kitchen, a small table, and a reading nook. SO cozy!

That leaves music, which will probably fall under my husband’s domain.

Our weekly schedule is pretty awesome this spring, full of activities that both the girls and I should enjoy.

Mondays: Classical Conversations and playground time with friends
Tuesdays: Bible study at church in the morning (social time for the girls)
Wednesdays: signing classes in the morning (Addie: tablework)
Thursdays: FREE day for chores and field trips, plus science and art
Fridays: signing class in the morning (both girls participate)

Afternoons will include a mandatory rest time, followed by all the direct-teach lessons that need to be completed. (The witching hour has always been our best time for schoolwork–I have no idea why!) Addie has a new daily checklist to start building independence and keep me accountable for covering each subject area each day.

I’m really excited about this new season. I am overjoyed that I am able to be home with our girls and have an active role in their education. 2015, I’m ready for you!

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