This morning, the children all popped up out of bed around 6 AM. They were wide awake and ready to go. They got even dressed in record time! It was the “first” day of school! But it’s a different kind of school from the majority of kids. This is a homeschool!
David said, “I’m not hungry yet. Let’s just get started on our school work. Is that okay?”
The other two children chimed in “Yes! Yes!” They were very excited to open the new school books we had spent all summer shopping for!
“Why of course!” I replied, trying not to look too over enthusiastic about my children’s’ eagerness to begin their school day.
So, without heading into the kitchen for a cup of coffee for me or breakfast for them, we all went into the school room I had spent the previous weeks setting up and perfecting. The children each picked up the math worksheets I had distributed to their child sized desks. The children were all bright, alert, and full of energy. They sped through the worksheets, getting all of the answers correct! I, on the other hand, was longing for a cup of coffee and some nourishment. I needed my coffee! How could the children have so much energy without even having breakfast? Isn’t breakfast supposed to be the most important meal of the day? I thought I heard voices. I listened! Yes, it was my favorite little neighborhood diner calling to meÃ¢Â?Â¦.I could taste the coffee and was salivating at the thought of the danishes! Hmm, I thought. Could we take a break so early?
I asked the children if they would like to do a few quick things like Handwriting Practice and Spelling, and then, go to “The Diner” for a break.
“Oh Yes!” squealed Charlotte!
“Oh Yes!” repeated the David and Lucy!
They couldn’t have looked anymore excited if I had told them it was time to leave for our summer vacation to Disney World! So, they quickly but correctly completed their tasks and checked them off on their agenda sheets. Of course, like any other respectable homeschooling family on the move, the children each brought a school book to read in the car on the way. They sat in the backseat, all buckled up, reading their books until we arrived.
The Diner was quiet and quite empty at 10AM on a weekday morning. Classical music was playing throughout the place. HmmmÃ¢Â?Â¦..can this be a music lesson? Why, yes, of course it can. So we discussed the musical instruments we heard in the Mozart pieces and we chatted about the tempo and rhythm of Bach while we waited for our food and then we talked some more while we ate our food. We concentrate on the time in history that each piece was composed in. HmmmmÃ¢Â?Â¦.can this be a history lesson too? Yes, yes! of course it can be. The children wolfed down eggs and toast, pancakes and sausage. One picked up a book and started reading. The other two discussed the artwork on the walls. Wow, this was turning into an art lesson too!!! What a day!
We came home, and now the children needed to expend some of the energy they had just consumed. So, David grabbed the basketball while Charlotte and Lucy ran for the monkey bar and swings in the back yard. After about half an hour, I reminded them that we still had work to complete.
The children didn’t want to come inside so I suggested that they spread blankets on the grass and finish their schoolwork out there. This allowed them the freedom of frequent breaks to ride bikes, play basketball, and swing on the swings between the subjects we were studying. They sang the song of the states while swinging. They memorized poems while gazing at the clouds. They recited addition and multiplication facts while jumping up and down on pogo sticks! Yes! Yes! and Yes! More things to check off from our Daily Agenda!
Eventually, the entire Daily Agenda had everything checked off, except for science. We had to move into the kitchen for that one. “What dissolves in water?” That was the question we needed to answer for the day. After going through the pantry and experimenting with numerous substances, we had some answers. Shortly, Science was done. However, the children insisted on continuing to mix substances together to see what they could come up with. When they were finally done, they dumped all the dirty plastic cups in the trash, took the trash out to the big can outside, washed all their spoons and wiped up the messes on the table. You’d never know we had a full blown mess in the kitchen 15 minutes prior!
Fiction or Fairy Tale? Well, a little of both! We rarely “pop” out of bed before 9AM and we don’t normally start school without breakfast, nor do we go out to eat very often. We start “school” when it works out to be convenient for us. We do take breaks between subjects sometimes. We call it physical education! We definitely do have conversations about art, music, history or whatever, wherever we may go. We travel with books and other educational materials. We try not to waste any opportunities to learn. We study outside when the weather is nice and we definitely do LOTS of hands on science experiments! Unfortunately, the kids rarely clean up so well!!!
Every day is different in the life of homeschoolers. Each day is an opportunity for a new adventure! Every opportunity is a new learning experience! Every day reminds me how blessed we are to be learning at home, together! And, every day, I am thankful that I live in a country that allows me the freedom to choose the educational approach I want my children to have!