Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Together Time

It has been a while since I have given an update on how our homeschooling is going. We have entered into our second semester, and I am definitely getting into a groove.

So, despite the fact that I am pouring most of my blogging efforts into my new online interior design endeavor {come visit me there!!}, I am really hoping to try to blog-journal a little bit more about our homeschooling experience thus far. You know. when I have spare time.

Today, I wanted to share with all of you how we start every day of homeschool together. We call it "Together Time." During together time, we establish the direction of our day and I teach group concepts.

I choose to keep our day very structured. It is what works for us... mostly because I have 2 boys, I think! And because my 5 year old, Caleb, has always thrived on structure and "knowing what comes next."

After Together Time, we move on to our workboxes. But both Together Time and Workboxes contain curriculum "meat." Here is, in general, what our Together Time looks like each day {except for Classical Conversations Day.... but that is for another post}:

  1. Clock In: The boys have Clock-In cards with their pics on them. They use these to put into a pocket that says "Clock In." We are currently on a "you have lost your privilege" break from these cards because the boys have been fighting over whose card gets to be in front.
  2. Pray: The boys say their same prayer every day. {see pic below}
  3. Daily Pledge: For now, we rotate our pledges between the American Pledge and the Pledge to the Christian flag. We do the Pledge to the Bible every day. {see pic below}
  4. Calendar Time: We identify the date and the day of the week. We also look outside and identify the weather.
  5. 100 Cup and Chart: This is a part of our My Father's World curriculum. We put a straw in a cup each day of school, and we write down what day of school it is on our 100 chart.  Once we get to a group of 10, we put a rubber band around that group and start counting by 10s. Soon, we will be celebrating our 100th day of school!
  6. Singing: This is different each day, and is curriculum led by the Reading portion of My Fathers World. I also have the boys sing some of their Classical Conversations memory work {we are singing all of the U.S. Presidents right now}. And we sing a coordinating song to our Bible Memory Verse, if one is available.
  7. Bible Time: This is when I present the Bible concepts from the Activity part of My Father's World {I know, I take it out of order. But it works for us}. We also review our Bible Memory Verse, and our Words to Remember {MFW}.
  8. Read/Write: We review our weekly letter by tracing it on our desks with our "magic fingers" and by recreating the letter using techniques from Handwriting Without Tears. We also learn new reading techniques or sight words during this time. I also do the Blend Ladder and any group reading activities from our My Father's World curriculum.
Whew. And that is just the beginning of our day! It usually takes about 30 minutes.

Actually, our days are not long. We spend about 2 hours, sometimes less, sometimes more, doing school each day. Anyway, that is our "Together Time." I hope to be sharing more about how our homeschool days go... but who knows when!!!



6 friends had a thing or two to say...:

Harter said...

Thanks so much for sharing this. I love the Bible pledge!

Carrie said...

Love this, Darlene!! This is great!! I love to see your creativity and scrappin' style in your homeschooling - FUN!!!

Jill - FNA Photography said...

Darlene you are doing such a great job!

Love you,
Jill

RachelT said...

Hi Darlene! You are doing a great job! Structure is what allows us to get things done around here, so and "Amen" to structure for school days! (Vacation has thrown that off and it's taking us a few days to get back into our routine.) Your "Together Time" poster is so cute! Have a great rest of the week.

Stacy@hiswaynotmine said...

Love your morning together time! It so reminds me of my early days of homeschooling. I actually read through your morning and lamented at how our years of homeschooling have changed as the boys have gotten so much older, and how I neglect to do this sweet, special school times with the 2 younger ones. Some things to think about.

Keep to it! You are doing an amazing job.

Did you all get a lot of snow? It just kept falling yesterday and today is a winter wonderland.

Stay warm!

Much love to you today,
Stacy

Megan W said...

This is SO helpful, as we are beginning the homeschooling journey! I would LOVE to see a picture of your whole corkboard for ideas - would that be possible? Thanks!