Home Education- a day in the life (or two)

It’s Thursday. I get my cup of coffee and clutch it for warmth as I set about helping a tired and bleary three year old get some breakfast. The other two have had breakfast and are playing upstairs.

After morning prayer and second breakfast for the two early eaters, I set about the kitchen and dishwasher and put the washing on. The dryer is bust so I cave to necessity and put the heating on. Then, to assuage my nagging guilt, I put the washing on the radiators because that’s making the most of them.

  It’s time to sort the work piles out. Thursdays are low-key for work piles as there’s other stuff to do.

Family prayer time: it’s 11.11 so we talk about all those who died in the two world wars and about all those men and women serving in the armed forces now and then we prayed for them. Picture credit). There was time to remember that Uncle Tom – their great grandad’s brother lies in Flander’s Field and their Uncle Jack their maternal great grandma’s little brother lies there too. [The story my aunts told me was that Jack, the only boy among 8 girls went to war aged 15 and was shot on his 16th birthday on the last day of the war.]

Then it’s about half nine and time to start learning. As the little ones choose their first workbooks/sheets a large young man sets about getting the coal in and lighting the fire.

Ronan gr2/yr 3 does: Mathematical Reasoning C and even though we don’t usually do it on a Thursday he asked to do Math U See (beta). He also did some English for Young Catholics 1 (going to start 2 after Christmas) and Language Smarts C. Then for penmanship he did cursive copywork.

He read to me, a chapter of Mr. Popper’s Penquins. For quiet reading he is reading Twenty Minute Tales by Enid Blyton (lent to him by his friend M).

Avila K/yr 1 does: Mathematical Reasoning A, She does a copywork page and then she works on her Starfall booklet. She’s on the last bit of Journal I and will start Journal II pretty soon.

She read to me The Chinese Adventure ORT 7. For quiet reading she read The Gruffalo to Heleyna. [The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child are lovely books]

She then did a couple of science games from FOSS.

Heleyna (age 3) did some Mathematical Reasoning Beginning. She also did some alphabet songs with more.starfall. She then joined Avila for science games but not for long. Too many good toys to play with 🙂

Read Alouds: A chapter from Our Island Story about King Arthur. I tend to change the wording a bit. It’s a bit too flowery and olde-Englande for us. [thoughts: I do like the books available on Baldwin Classics but I tend to try and read ahead whenever we use them. They sometimes have some racist assumptions, some anti-Catholic black legend as though it really is history and the annoying (to us) pseudo-shakespearian thee’s and thou’s approach. Also bare in mind that a lot of new discoveries have been made over the last 100 years that those authors wouldn’t have known, and which  makes some of their historical portrayals less than accurate].

A bit of Pagoo and a bit of The First Christians (which the children really love).

I got tired of reading then so we didn’t get around to Find the Constallations.

We did four lessons of Kinderbach and that included some piano practice.

Then it was cooking time. Ronan joined me in the kitchen to make the Christmas cake. The girls went to play.

Every other Thursday is Big Clean Afternoon. So we do the big clean.

By the evening I’ve had it. I realise that the printer ran out of ink and the spares Alex gave me are dried up so don’t work. Tomorrow I have history …can’t face sorting it now.  ZZZZZzzzzzzz

It’s Friday morning and coffee wakes me up (sort of). There’s morning prayer, the kitchen to clean, breakfast and washing to do and I put the bread on. (I mix white bread flour with wholemeal spelt)

Then because there’s no ink in the printer I trace out and draw four maps of China and four Tang Warriors. Then I look up Cimabue’s Madonna, Christchild and saints (there’s more than one) and get it ready for the art lesson.

Meanwhile Alex is in the kitchen with a cleaver and carving knife cutting up the giant pumpkin/squash thing K gave us last week.

Everyone arrives and we all gather in the living room. K reads the chapter from Story of the World Vol 2 while I’m finishing the Tang Warrior colour sheets. We then move to the back room and the big table for map work and to colour their warriors. [Story of the World Vol 1 was pretty good until near the end where she seems to rush it and leave out important events. Vol 2 is getting irritating to be honest as so much seems skimmed over or left out, or not quite accurate. If you use this I would say get a lot of other history books and read ahead].

While the colouring is going on we get lunch ready. The children go and play until all the lunch is laid out. There’s home made bread, home made soup, veg and fruit and noodles and cheese.

After lunch it’s time to make chinese blocks to print. We make them with string stuck to card in their designs and then they leave the glue to dry while they have a go at using chop sticks. Yes, well….they had a go.

Then it’s time to paint the string pictures and print paper plates. China invented wooden block printing apparently.

It’s time for art and we continue the study of Cimabue from Artistic Pursuits and his work, begun last week. [These books are now shockingly expensive. I bought Vols 1 and 2 some years ago at a good price; can’t remember what but nowhere near the ridiculous price they are now. We’re on Vol 2 now. After that I’m going to change program or maybe even write my own.] There’s a picture to study and the activity is to paint a saint, angel or important person and add some gold to the painting. We have gold paint and other paints so the children all choose what they would like to paint.

There is silence.

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Then there is a little more time to play, clear up and the other family head off home.


8 responses to “Home Education- a day in the life (or two)

  1. Just out of interest; would you recommend following a curriculum? E.g. one of the American ones (such as Starfall? I know a few mums here who use it)

    Although I have a couple of years yet before starting ‘officially’ with Jopseh, I still sometimes worry that I wont know where to start or what resourcres to use, or what to cover on a day to day basis.


    • I tend to have a bit of a pick’n’mix approach to curricula so I wouldn’t follow one particular one.
      I think as your little man grows you will see what he needs as you go along-being his mum-and will go with that.
      I love Starfall and More.Starfall. It has suited all three of the younger ones; but it teaches reading and offers good worksheets for basic maths and letter and word formation. It isn’t a full curriculum and there are some overly PC elements that I tend to find a little irritating.
      All I can suggest is – take a look at what’s out there and see what you and your son enjoy.
      You can always email me if you have questions and i’ll try to answer them 🙂

  2. What a lovely round-up. Thanks for posting this, Mum6kids. I wish I had educated my dear children at home from the start. Never too late, but…

  3. Sounds like everyone had a good time! Things here are still up in the air after the move – but I expect them to calm down next week so we can get back to our regular routine. Thankfully I don’t really have to worry about the boys being “behind” since their test scores say they are so many grades “ahead” – whatever that means. They are doing a lot of reading and studying on their own during this chaotic time… they’re such good kids! 🙂

    • Hope you can find it all after the move!
      I love the fact that HE children find learning so much part of normality that they do it, no matter what is happening around them.
      Take care.

  4. Two fabulous days. Bet you’re shattered.

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