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We began educating our three children in 1985, when our eldest was aged five years. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn as they grew and explored and discovered this amazing world since the moment they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. I hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was!
Typical Homeschool or Unschool Day Series
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A day in the life of the homeschooling Rebecca
first published on Rebecca Getting Real, Dec 4, 2011
I try and include a bit of fun each day, for consolidation of new skills, and review of previously learnt material. We use structured workbooks for reading and maths. These are a pre written program that we loosely follow and I insert and tweak as we go along. I assess each term according to the Australian Standards and check off what I know that they can do, and what we have covered.
So many of my friends say things like, "Oh I could never do that!" which I do find kind of embarrassing.
Anyone can homeschool. It helps if you can read though! I suppose all that is really needed is the ability to ask, "Where to from here?"
My typical day starts at about 6 am with wake up. I give myself the first 3 hours to sort out household stuff. My list follows: cooked breakfast for the husband, pack him his lunch (yes he is a lazy git in this regard but it saves me money to make sure he has food), breakfast for the children and I. Get Up and Go Chart Supernanny (teeth, bed, hair, shoes, socks), start the washing cycle, kitchen, floor, then I have a shower and get dressed.
We generally start our first lessons at about 9am. We work through about 2-3 lessons and then have a snack. No more than one hour. Then the children have a play.
These first lessons can vary, but usually the first one is rather informal and easy, like a board game (sight word bingo, word snap), spot the difference barrier game (oral language program), a reading folder game or something that starts to warm their brains up for learning. It is a rather short lesson lasting only about 10 minutes.
Then we complete our reading. We use the Fitzroy Reading Program . Some days they complete the lesson on the computer and then swap to bookwork and always we have reading. Some days it is just bookwork and reading. Others it is baking, writing cards, letters, and reading treasure hunt hints.
We use Reading Eggs to supplement and stimulate. I try to vary it as often as need be. It varies depending on what they are up to in the workbook, whether we are starting a new book and whether they are able to sit and do a formal lesson or are edgy and need a less structured one
The next lesson usually is handwriting and/or history lesson. We use the Story of the World Vol 1 as our history. The children enjoy the read to's, which we usually complete in the car via ipod. They love history.
Then it is time for a break. A quick feed to carb up, a 20 minute play and then it is back to the lessons. Whilst they are playing I am sweeping the floor, hanging out the washing and putting on the next load, and cleaning up the snack mess.
Next lesson. Here I like to complete their counting and maths. This is usually more formal than informal. I have a structure that I found worked in the classroom very well. Every maths lesson we start with some sort of counting or place value verbal activity. We are currently using the Math U See Primer for Ms Busyfingers (5) and Alpha for Ms Bossyboots (6). I also use Mathletics and Studyladder which I love to break it up. Some days one or both will throw a fit if I bring out the text book. Using the computer is a wonderful tool in our household.
We review the previous lessons work, and then we continue on with the next activity, review that and then we are finished. Some days they reject any formality and we end up playing a maths game. Most of the time, this is then followed with our Social studies or science lesson. We currently use Marrets prep work books. I teach around the topics and use the activities in the texts to reinforce learning.
By now it is about 11:30am. It is usually time to put the baby down for her nap and start cleaning up for lunch. The children go off and play. If everything has gone well, we are done without tears or tantrums. If not then I will hold lunch over their heads to encourage them to complete their work. They do not eat, until their work is complete.
Rebecca is an Australian home educating mother and blogger.
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