New Home, New Routines

We’ve been in our new home for eight days today—though it seems like a lot longer! Adam started his new job on Monday, and in addition to unpacking/settling things around the house, I’m also working with the girls to set up our new routines/schedule for the rest of the school year.

One of the homeschooling questions that I am asked most frequently is how we set up our day, so I thought I’d give you a peek into what’s working for us right now:

7:15 a.m. The sun is streaming in our front windows. Everyone is up, spread out in our favorite corners of the house—reading, playing, getting ready for work.

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8:00 a.m. We say goodbye to Adam, finish getting ready for the day (make beds, get dressed, brush teeth, etc.), and sit down for breakfast together. The girls help me clean up the kitchen after we eat and then settle down on the couch for some morning read-aloud time.

9:00 a.m. We head downstairs to the basement to start our school day. (Today we took a walk in the snow first, so we may add regular morning outside time to our routine, depending on the temperature.)

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Kate is working on a few workbooks that I purchased at the beginning of her preK year. This is new interest on her part, so I’m limiting her to less than 10 minutes of table work at a time to avoid burn-out. She also loves her Do-a-Dot Markers right now, so her stack of finished projects is growing each day. When she loses interest sitting at her desk, she works on her Valentine’s Day tot tray activities down on the rug at our feet. I know she’s listening to the lessons Addie is working on because she responds to my questions every once in a while.

Addie and I took a few weeks off from consistent schoolwork during the move, so this week we are focusing on getting back into our regular routine using our basic curriculum.

  • Morning Wake-Up from Teachers Pay Teachers
  • Saxon Math 2
  • Geography Workbook
  • Spelling
  • Grammar

For history, we are reading a couple of chapter books about George Washington and Betsy Ross and using some handouts I’ve printed from Teachers Pay Teachers. We are also practicing the Pledge of Allegiance together in the morning.

Our current science unit is human anatomy, but it’s been a bit tricky since our new library offers different books. I need to sit down with our curriculum and rework our lessons a bit before next week starts.

11:30 a.m. Addie is practicing her typing/computer skills by writing a story using Microsoft Word. Kate and I are playing together on the floor nearby—she loves Uno, Rack-O, and Four-in-a-Row right now.

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12:00 p.m. We head upstairs to prepare lunch. The girls listen to music and tell silly stories to each other while they eat, then they help with clean up.

1:00 p.m. Every one heads to their beds for rest time. (Well, I typically do a few more chores before sitting down with a book around 1:30 p.m.) Kate has been sleeping really well this week, catching up on all that she missed during the uncertainty of our move. Addie’s reading a new series of books about Rose Wilder (Laura Ingalls Wilder’s daughter). She’s also watching me work on a cross-stitch project and wanting to help, so I think we’ll get her started on a “sampler” of her own next week. Learning about Betsy Ross has piqued her interest when it comes to sewing.

3:00 p.m. Rest time is over and we head downstairs for more playing. Addie’s been going out in the backyard to play in the snow for 10-15 minutes, but Kate prefers to stay inside where it’s warm. I unpack a few boxes each day and try to find a new home for all of the last miscellany. I fold laundry, start dinner, and enjoy the beautiful sunshine streaming in the windows. We are so thankful for the bright winter sun and all the light that is reflecting on the snow in our yard.

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When it gets a bit warmer, I’m sure our final hours of the afternoon will be spent outdoors. We have a large yard for running and exploring, and I’ve been told there are a few parks within walking/biking distance, too.

5:15 p.m. Adam gets home from work (hello, 4-mile commute!) and we eat dinner, leaving plenty of time in the evening for a trip to the library. We are still exploring every corner of our new favorite place, but so far, we’ve had LEGO time, perused a Friends of the Library book sale, watched the birds on display (!) and browsed the stacks. It’s also our only chance to get online until our landlord connects our house to the Internet, so…yeah, spending lots of time at the library.

Tomorrow kicks off our new Saturday morning tradition, which includes a trip to one of the authentic Dutch bakeries on the square (there are TWO!) and story time at the library.

The girls are looking forward to making new friends—we know there is a homeschool support group in town, but we haven’t run into them yet—but in the meantime, we are enjoying our family time together and making our new house into a cozy little home.

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