Home Management while Homeschooling

Home Management

5 Days of Homeschool 101 -Day 3

5 Days of Homeschool 101- Home Management
Managing my home is difficult.  It really is.  Home management can be tricky.  I’m a busy mama of 10 kids ages eleven down to ten weeks.  Life is crazy.  I sometimes feel like I never get anything done because it gets undone before I’m on the next task.

I love my family though.  And I love having a clean clutter free house.  But I’ve learned I can’t have a happy family and a spotless house.  Things just don’t work that way when you have a small house and lots of people, plus two dogs and three cats.  We’re animal lovers here.  Add in living on a farm and all that brings with it and you’ve got a recipe for a dirty house.

So, how do you manage the home and the homeschool?  In our house it’s by making the two one.  All the kids have chores and one of the first things we do every morning is clean the house.  This might just be making beds and sweeping floors or it might be more indepth and mopping and deep cleaning.  Either way, the house gets clean before breakfast.  It’s a way I’ve managed to contain the mess and make myself motivated to get our school day started.

In the same sense, one of the last things we do every day is clean up.  It’s the pick up time.  Pick up the toys and put them away.  Clean up the rooms so you’re not tripping on things in the dark and you wake up to a semi clean house.  Who wants to wake up to a kitchen full of dishes?  Trust me, I have, it’s not a nice site and it tends to set the wrong tone for my whole day.

 

home management

 

Talk of cleaning brings about a key point in home management when you have a large family.  Chores.  All of my kids have chores.  Whether they’re simple like making sure your dirty clothes get in the hamper, brushing your teeth, and taking care of your dirty dishes or more complex like doing laundry and cleaning the bathroom.  Everyone in my home has chores to do.

I’ve been through some dark times while learning home to manage home and homeschool and I’d love to share my solution with you.  Part of it is above with keeping the house clean.  This means everyone pitches in.  There may be grumbling, but it saves my sanity.  I just can’t wrap my head around sitting down to devote time to schooling my children with a pile of dirty dishes in my sink and dog hair all over the floor.  I’m distracted.  And if I’m distracted my kids are too.

Planning.  Planning is another huge part of keeping a happy home and homeschool.  Home management should be a priority.  You can read about my homeschool planning but I’m also talking home planning as well.  Have a plan for your days.  For me, one of the first things I do is wash laundry and my cloth diapers.  This way I’m not rushing around at the end of the day trying to get caught up on laundry.  And because I want to get the laundry out of the way, my kids get one of their chores of taking the dirty clothes to the laundry area done as well.  

Some other things to plan are any appointments or things that are going to take you out of the home.  If you have young children you want to plan those around naptime.  You also  want to make sure and schedule your homeschool day around them or them around your homeschool routine.  Choosing curriculum is a vital part of home management and homeschool planning.  

Routines are really important for some of my children.  I have to keep a structured day for them.  Which means we keep to a similar schedule every week.  Two of my children require going to therapy once a week.  We do this on the same day every week and at the same time so that everyone knows on this day we do this.  It’s part of our routine, our schedule, and because of this our homeschool.

Likewise, I set aside Monday as our busy day.  If we need to schedule a checkup or a dentist appt I’m going to be doing that on a Monday.  My monthly grocery coop is on a Monday.  Our dance is on a Monday.  That is our running around day.  If we’re going to have a playdate or go to one of our homeschool groups that meets at a park we do that on a Friday.  But because I don’t like to do a ton of running around we don’t ever do that in the same week that we are gone on the Monday.

Which brings another important note for us in our family.  We stay home for the majority of our homeschool.  When you have ten children it’s not easy to travel.  It requires planning and packing even if it’s just for grocery shopping.  And it can be stressful for me as the mom making sure I’ve got all my children especially with all the recent news of kidnappings and child trafficking.  A parent’s worst nightmare.

So the key to keeping a happy home and happy homeschool in our house is home management.  Managing our home can be tricky and sometimes we do have to break from our routine, but in the end life is so much better when we all know what our jobs are and when/how to do them.  There have been days when we didn’t get any school done due to the house being a mess.  I’m not proud of those days.  But I’m so glad that I finally figured out what works for our family and our home.

What is your day like?  How have you worked out home management and homeschooling?  Any tips and tricks to share?  Make sure to check out the other TOS Crew blogs linked below and the Main TOS Crew Blog.

 

 


Homeschool Planning

Homeschool Planning

Day 2: 5 Days of Homeschool 101

 

5 Days of Homeschool 101- Homeschool Planning
 

Homeschool planning.  It seems daunting.  At least it always has to me.  There are so many different ways to plan for your homeschool.  So many different planners available and curriculum choices.  It’s enough to make you want to run away screaming.

I’d love to share with you how I have finally found myself in homeschool planning.  I have a large family with several school aged children which makes homeschool planning even more of a challenge for me.  Add in some of the kids having special needs when it comes to learning plus life on the farm and I’m liable to go crazy!

Some people plan out their whole year, some their month, others their week, and some even do it just day by day.  My strategy incorporates a bit of all of those together.  When we get ready to start our new year of homeschooling I look at the curriculum and find the halfway mark.  I note that down in a notebook.  That’s where I want to be mid year, so by January 1st I want us to be on that lesson or that page.  Seems simple so far right?

 

Homeschool Planning

 

Next I start out by choosing day 1.  What will be the first day of our new school year?  Most years we start on the first Monday of July since we tend to school year round.  However some years, like this year we pushed our start date back.  I needed a bit more time to recover from having a baby, which also adds a new dimension to homeschool planning!

Okay.  So we’ve got our halfway mark, we’ve got our day 1.  Now it’s time to do some planning.  I plan out the first month all at once.  That way we have a solid foundation to start with.  We’re more likely to hold to our schedule and follow through if we know that we can’t get off track or we’ll be behind so soon.  As we get to the end of the first month I start doing my planning by week.  This way I allow room for our other activities and can plan around days we’re going to need to be out of the house.

One of the fun things with homeschooling is that if I know we’re going to be gone and have a lot of driving time I can plan accordingly.  So, instead of doing workbooks or notebooking while driving we can listen to some history or science.  We can take a short field trip. There are lots of ways to add in schooling hours and keep us learning without being in the books everyday.

What about homeschool planners you ask?  I have tried a lot of them.  I’ve tried online and in print.  I prefer mine to be in print so I can write in them.  I’m a pen and paper type of girl.  Plus it gives the kids access to them as well.  My current system involves using a weekly planning book for each child while also maintaining a large calendar for me which overviews what we’re doing daily.  It may seem confusing but it works very well for us at this point in time.  

I love homeschool planners, but most don’t have space for me to plan out for 7-8 children.  Eventually I’ll need one that I can plan for ten(or more).  There are printable options that I could customize to get to that point, but I don’t seem to have the time to do that either.  Life is short, life is full, and I’m looking for an easy planning method so I don’t have to spend a full day every week planning.

That brings me to how I “cheat”.  I love to find curriculum that all the kids can use together.  Example is that for history we’re using Story of the World.  All the kids can listen to me read and participate in the question and answer session.  We then each have a notebook to record what they learned that day through drawings and writings.  It’s simple for me to plan out and yet still very educational.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my short little view of my homeschool planning.  As time allows I’m going to be giving you a visual of my monthly and weekly planning and what we use for each age and grade.  I’m still bouncing around a bit with some of my children but for the most part we’ve found our groove.

In relation to our homeschool planning check out our home management as well.  They go hand in hand.

All members of the TOS Crew who wish to are participating in this blog hop.  Feel free to go to the Main Blog Post or check out some of the blogs on the linky below.



Choosing Curriculum for your Homeschool

Choosing Curriculum

5 Days of Homeschool 101 -Day 1

Choosing curriculum is a vital part of homeschooling.  It’s right up there with deciding to homeschool.  For me it’s also an ordeal.  I overthink for one.  And of course, I really want to find something that can work for more than one child or better yet for everyone in our homeschool.

5 Days of Homeschool 101
Some subjects are easier to find a solution with.  Choosing curriculum for history is far easier than math for me.  For history I want and found something that I could use with all of my school age children that we all could understand.  It’s simple.  It’s thorough.  And best of all I can use it with everyone and then make the changes to what level their at for the discussion and extras we do.  For history we use Story of the World.  

Choosing curriculum for math is a bit more difficult.  I don’t like using lots of different companies.  I’d rather have everyone in the same company so that I myself don’t have to alter or remember which version of teaching I’m using with each child.  We’ve used lots of different math curriculum.  The one that I’ve found that works for all my children is Horizons from Alpha Omega.  I have some who are gifted in math and some who struggle but they all seem to be able to use this one.

Other math we have used and do like and recommend are Math Mammoth and CTCMath.  You can check them out in my reviews when you get a chance or research them on your own.  The concept that they both use for math is more mastery versus the integration that Horizons uses.  My children who have some special needs need the integration so they don’t forget what they’ve learned while my gifted son really enjoys the mastery method more.  Of course, he also likes that the two I mentioned here are online.  He loves getting to use the computer.

 

 

Choosing Curriculum

 

Science.  Oh science.  This subject really gives me troubles.  I finally decided to follow a Charlotte Mason approach to this and use a living science curriculum that is focusing more on nature this year.  We’re doing a lot of journalling and exploring.  Because of this we can do this one on the go and call our park play-dates field trips as well as fun. Our science is in the photo above.  We’re also adding in some Apologia Astronomy to go with the astronomy part of our Living Learning Books.

We also have to think about reading and writing, phonics and spelling.  I’ve found that the best way to teach reading to my children involves using Explode the Code.  I love it.  My kids love it.  And learning to read comes along with it.  Once my children have completed the entire Explode the Code series I start them into Learning Language Arts Through Literature.

Because we follow a more Charlotte Mason approach I love using curriculum that highlights her approach.  We use copywork that is Bible verses or other things that I want my children to memorize and learn.  It works on handwriting as well as memorization.  We also tend to add in more books and reading than most of our curriculum requires.  Libraries are one of our best friends and we have cards for four different ones.

Let’s see, what’s left?  What other curriculum do we choose?  The extras we do with each year differ a bit.  We always have some kind of music though.  All of the kids take piano lessons while my husband is also teaching them guitar.  Art is the subject that I have the most trouble with as I am severely challenged in this area.  Because of this I try to let my children do a lot of art within each subject.

Some other things to think about while choosing curriculum are your home management and homeschool planning methods.  You need to make sure that you will have the time needed in your daily schedule for the curriculum you’ve chosen.  Different curriculum require different amounts of time.

Make sure to check out all the blogs linked up below and the Main TOS Crew page for what others have to say about choosing curriculum and what’s important to them.



Homeschooling on the Go

Homeschooling on the Go

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents -Day 3 

Our family has been faced with lots of different appointments and being on the go a lot lately.  I’ve had to adjust what I’ve been doing so we can do our homeschooling on the go and at home.  I’m not a hugely flexible person so this was a bit of a challenge for me.  I rose to the challenge though and I’m sharing some of my tips and tricks now!

 

Homeschooling on the Go

 

Some fun things we’ve found to do to make homeschooling on the go easier are to invest in wipe off white boards for all the kids.  I initially thought of chalk boards, but the dust from the chalk would surely make me sneeze!  So small individual sized whiteboards with a small package of markers per row in the van is what we did.  Each child has their own board but each row in our 15 passenger van shares a package of markers.  Sometimes sharing markers may cause fights but I told the kids the alternative was one marker each.  They share fairly well now.

These whiteboards can be used for math facts.  We are working on skip counting with some of the kids and this is an awesome way to do it.  I try to have an older and a younger child in each of the rows in our van as well so the older child can help me check work.  Mostly it’s all verbal though.  

We also use our whiteboards for spelling word practice while we’re homeschooling on the go.  No one said you have to do all of your practice in books!  We’re saving the environment one workbook at a time.  .. . .well not really because we do still use our workbooks but this really is a great way to take our school with us.  

Other ways to take school with you are to have read aloud books on tape(CD) so you can listen to them as you go.  I’ve found that lots of curriculums also offer supplemental things on CD that you can listen to.  Our History curriculum that we are using(Story of the World) has their entire book on CD that you can listen to history while you drive!

 There are lots of fun ways to incorporate homeschooling on the go into your life.  If you are going to have to sit and wait for an appointment to start we love to take whatever book that child is reading with us.  They can silent read or read it aloud softly to me in the waiting areas.  Also this is a great time to work on those workbooks too!

We also love to do flashcards when we are homeschooling on the go.  I’ll make up flashcards, hole punch the corner and then you can hang them on a metal clasp or just use yarn to bind them together so the different batches stay together.  We then will have one child help the other with their cards and then reverse roles so that they can all have a chance at learning through flashcards.  I will warn you it can get loud doing this!  With 9 kids myself in our 15 passenger van there are four seats.  So we could have four different sets of flashcards going at once!  

Another fun thing to do when you’re homeschooling on the go is to read the signs going by.  Believe it or not this is great reading practice and can also do some comprehension as well.  Mainly this is for older kids and not those just learning to read considering the speed you’re passing those signs.

In the same vein as the above you can also do some counting practice on the go.  You can practice your skip counting or just practice recognizing the numbers on the signs you pass.  Those mile markers are great for practicing!  Especially if you’re working on decimal placement.

Hope you’ve enjoyed hearing some of the fun ways we keep homeschooling on the go and I’d love to hear your thoughts or fun things you do!

 

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents
 

Don’t forget to check out the Main post linking us all up over on the TOS Blog.  You can also check out a few other blogs by clicking the links below.  I hope you enjoy this blog hop as much as we enjoy bringing it to you!  Don’t forget to keep up with my posts by reading them here.

 

 
Dawn @ Double O Farms
Dawn @ Guiding Light Homeschool
Debbie @ Debbie’s Homeschool Corner
Desiree @ Our Homeschool Notebook
Diana @ Busy Homeschool Days
Diana @ Homeschool Review
Elyse @ Oiralinde: Eternal Song
Emilee @ Pea of Sweetness
Erin @ For Him and My Family
Jen @ Chestnut Grove Academy

Balancing Homeschool and Housework

Balancing Homeschool and Housework

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents -Day 2

I don’t know about your homeschool, but mine is very time-consuming.  I have nine children.  I’m pregnant due in June.  We homeschool year round.  I have a tiny house.  My housework can pile up and my home quickly become unlivable if I don’t keep up with it.

 

Balancing Homeschool and Housework

 

It seems like all I’m ever doing is balancing homeschool and housework, or really just trying to.  It’s hard.  I won’t lie.  I have to do both at the same time and that means multi tasking.  It also means I must have a schedule.  A schedule set for when and how we do school and for when and how I do housework.

Balancing homeschool and housework is more than just making sure dirty dishes go in the dishwasher as soon as they’re done being used.  It’s more than making sure dirty laundry gets to the dirty hampers.  For me, it’s bigger things.  It’s keeping my house company ready(well good friend company at least).  It’s making sure my floors are swept at least twice a day.  It’s having a schedule for when I’m going to mop the floors.  But more than that!  It’s working in fixing meals and keeping a routine so my special needs kids aren’t floating in the breeze.

Balancing homeschool and housework isn’t just about the schooling and the cleaning.  It’s about me having time to do the things my kids love and I love.  It’s taken me several years to get to a place where I know I’m doing what I need to around the house without shirking on school and I know I’m getting done what needs to be done with school without shirking on housework. And within that delicate mix I’m also getting to spend quality time with my husband and kids.

What did I do?  

Well, for starters I realized that I couldn’t do as much of the homeschool planning as I had been doing.  I needed to make that easier on myself.  I couldn’t take a full day every week just to plan what I was going to do with my children for school.  Again, that was taking away from housework and then I’d need a full day to catch up on my housework!  It just wasn’t working.

We changed up our homeschool.  We still do school in the mornings but we don’t start until 9am.  That gives me time to get some morning chores like sweeping/vacuuming/mopping out-of-the-way and gives the kids time to get their own household chores done as well as eat breakfast.  I also do laundry daily.  This makes sure it’s not piling up on me.  My kids all have chores.  This has really helped me!  And I’ve learned to delegate more chores to my older children who can manage them.  Due to learning disabilities and delays children the same age may not be able to do the same chores, but everyone has chores they are capable of doing and they get a sense of accomplishment from doing them.  

When moms ask me how I do it all, I tell them I don’t.  And it’s true.  I don’t do it all.  My kids help me a lot.  They know that school time is for school and we have to get school done or we don’t get to go outside and play.  If school doesn’t get done we don’t go on nature walks, we don’t get to ride horses, etc.  Those are some powerful motivators!  I encourage other moms to take the time to teach their young children chores and responsibility.  

When I was in the worst of it(for me) was when I had 8 children ages 5 and under.  I was starting the older half on kindergarten or preschool but I was also trying to keep toddlers and newborns busy.  I was struggling to do anything with the house.  My house was a huge mess.  My house is so small that being a huge mess makes me depressed.  I quickly learned that I had to teach these little ones that they could help me.  Because they could.  Did you know a 5-year-old loves to help fold clothes?  That they can learn colors by helping to sort laundry?

Balancing homeschool and housework is tough guys.  I won’t lie.  But if you can get a plan in place you can do it.  That plan for me is one room a day.  I divide the rooms up so that I only have one room per day to deep clean.  That means every room gets fully cleaned once a week.  For example, on Monday I deep clean and scrub my bathroom.  It’s not neglected the rest of the week but merely surface cleaned.  One of my older girls is in charge of sweeping and picking up the bathroom daily.  On Wednesdays my kitchen gets deep cleaned.  It’s one of the few rooms that the kids don’t help with too much.  They sweep when I ask them but that’s about all.  I do a pick up of that room daily though.

Saturdays are our school free day.  That’s the day that I work on any and all housework that has gotten behind during the week.  I do bulk baking on this day.  Sunday is our day of rest and we do all kinds of fun things as a family.

 

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents
 

I hope you’re enjoying this blog series and remembering to check out the Main TOS Blog to see all the other blogs who are participating.  I’m listing a few below that you can check out too.  Plus don’t forget to check out my other days in the 5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents blog hop.  

 

 
Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Jennifer @ A Peace of Mind
Jennifer @ Faithful Homestead
Joelle @ homeschooling for His Glory
Joesette @ Learning Curve
Kari @ Random Acts of Boyhood
Katie @ Katie’s Daily Life
Kemi @ Homemaking Organized
Kim @ Homestead Acres
Kylie @ Our Worldwide Classroom

Homeschooling While on Bedrest

Day 1:  Homeschooling While on Bedrest

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents

 

I recently had the opportunity to be on bedrest for two weeks.  I needed to keep homeschooling my kids so we don’t fall behind.  This brings a new perspective to what I do and how we do it!  So for the first day of the 5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents that the TOS Crew members are putting on I bring you Homeschooling While on Bedrest.

 

Homeschooling While on Bedrest

 

Homeschooling takes commitment but we all know that coming in to the game.  What we don’t always understand is just how time-consuming it can be or how hard it can become.  Life throws us curve balls just to see if we can catch them I guess.

I caught such a curveball a few weeks ago.  I had some pregnancy complications which left me on bedrest for two weeks.  Homeschooling while on bedrest is not for the uncommitted.  I can tell you that.  I was committed to keeping the kids up on their schooling while I was on bedrest but that first day I really wasn’t sure how.  Not to mention the fact that I had two kids sick and wasn’t sure how to get them to the doctor!  My mom came to my rescue and took the kids to the doctor and we declared it a sick day while I figured this all out.

Homeschooling while on bedrest looked to me like me being in a reclining chair or on our couch so I could be out in our main living area.  Our living room is the largest room in the house which isn’t saying too much since we have a small house.  I knew I needed to find a way to move the kids into that room for their school or I wouldn’t be able to keep track of what they had done and what they still needed to do.

Enter solution for me!  We have a folding dining room table.  It’s not ideal but it does seat us all if barely.  We outgrew our old table and haven’t found a harvest table that meets our size requirements so we’re working with what we have.  My solution was to simply bring that folding table and our chairs into the living room with me.  So I set the kids to cleaning and sweeping the area the table would go in and getting it moved.

Once we had the table moved to the room I was resting in it made it a lot easier for me to watch the kids do their school.  They could then bring their books to me when they needed help and homeschooling while on bedrest began to seem doable.  But I still had two sick kids.  

So while I was in the chair reclining my two sick kids were on the couch resting.  The others were doing school.  The toddler was playing with her toy kitchen in a corner of the living room and the preschooler would play with her when she was done with her small bit of school.

Homeschooling while on bedrest was definitely not easy.  It’s also not something that I want to do again.  But, there is a chance I will have to.  So I’m making preparations now to make it even easier.  I think for me that’s the biggest hurdle to overcome.  I’m a planner and suddenly being thrown into something that wasn’t in my plans does not work well for me.  Having a plan in place if you’re pregnant and this does happen to you will really help your sanity and your thought process.

By thought process I mean it will help your can do attitude.  It will bring homeschooling while on bedrest from a I think  I can do this to an I know I can do this mindset.  I truly think that is the largest hurdle that has to be overcome.  Having a good support system will also help.  I have 9 children ages 2-11.  My husband works.  I was home alone all day and was overwhelmed with it all.  I mean how do you homeschool while on bedrest and take care of your home and your kids?  Thankfully my mom stepped in and came over around lunch time almost daily to help me out.  She was such a help!  I’d encourage you if you think you might have to homeschool while on bedrest to talk to other people and get a support system set up so if you need help you have it available.

 

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents
 

Hope my little post helps someone else who might be faced with homeschooling while on bedrest and I’ll see you tomorrow with another installment of the 5 Days of Homeschool Tips for Parents right here!

Don’t forget to check out the Main post linking us all up over on the TOS Blog.  You can also check out a few other blogs by clicking the links below.  I hope you enjoy this blog hop as much as we enjoy bringing it to you!  Don’t forget the hop is five days and you should read all five of my posts!

 

Annette @ A Net In Time
Brandy @ Kingdom Academy Homeschool
Brenda @ Counting Pinecones
Carol @ Home Sweet Life
Cassandra @ A Glimpse of Normal
Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses
Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm
Crystal @ Crystal Starr
DaLynn @ Biblical Womanhood
Danielle @ Sensible Whimsy

 

 

 

This post has been shared on:  Motivation Monday, Clever Chicks link up, Modest MondayMonday of Many Blessings, Art of Homemaking, Mondays Musings, Titus 2 Tuesdays, Wise Woman Link Up, Hearts for Home Blog Hop

Get Access to ALL the Adventures in Odyssey!

It’s August, which means it’s nearly time for your kids to pack up their pencils, zip up their backpacks, and hop on the school bus. Aside from prepping them for their new teachers, new classes, or maybe even a new school, it’s important to prep their faith. Sign your whole family up for Adventures in Odyssey‘s Odyssey Adventure Club for a special price of $9.99/month. The club is an essential tool to teach your children to share their faith at school, to be bold, and to grow in their relationship with God.

I love that with this promotion you’re going to get access to ALL the Adventures in Odyssey!  You’re in for a lifetime of fun and adventure!!

 

Get Access to ALL the Adventures in Odyssey 

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My kids love Adventures in Odyssey.  We listen to the stories, we read the books, we listen to the audiobooks and watch the movies.  They pack a solid values lesson and entertain at the same time.  They have the seal of approval from this busy homeschool mama.

 

 

 

Disclaimer:  I have been provided with a free account to Adventures in Odyssey Club in exchange for my promotion of their website and club.  I have not been compensated in any other way.  This is in conjunction with Litfuse Publicity Group.

 

 

Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler

My life has had a toddler in it since my oldest hit the toddle stage.  She’s now 10.  So my entire homeschool career has had a little toddler around while I’m working with the older kids.  Let’s talk today on Day 4 of Real Life Homeschool about Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler.

 

Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler

 

We tend to make cute little tubs that hold toys in them.  We have a tub with blocks, a tub of duplo, a tub with a baby and accessories, a tub with crayons and a coloring book/some colored paper, and several sensory activity type tubs.  Oh and we have a tub that has Thomas the Train engines in it for when she’s in a high energy must make noise time!   We also have a low shelf that contains books that she can look at and play with.  I plan on doing some posts next week about our toddler activity tubs.  There are some awesome ideas out there too!

I also keep snacks handy for the toddler.  Little things that are healthy and easy for her to eat without choking.  We get some awesome baby snacks that resemble cheerios but are actually made from veggies and fruits.  My toddlers have always loved these.  Keep a sippy cup of water in your school area as well!  Cut up grapes and put in a container in the fridge the night before and you’ve got a great little snack. 

Something that has saved my life with a toddler is babywearing.  I love to wear my babies and they love to be worn.  This seriously saves our school day when the toddler is teething or cranky or just in need of a nap.  Even if she’s in a great mood she still likes to be worn for around ten minutes at a time to have that closeness with me.

Of course, you get the fun toddler times too!  I cannot count the number of times we’ve had a toddler sitting on a school desk smack dab on top of their lesson so that they’ll pay attention to her instead of their work.  Another thing that happens countless times is the toddler deciding to take all the school books off their shelf and resort them.  So, if you visit and wonder why the 4th graders reading materials are mixed in with the kindergartener, just giggle and say “I see the toddler has been here.”

I have come to learn that Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler can be very challenging.  There are going to be days you want to pull your hair out, days where you’re looking for the closest school to put your kids in or at least a daycare for the toddler!  But there are also going to be the days where you are filled with joy at all your children have learned.  When your toddler comes over to you and can count to 10(she’s not even 2 yet!!!) or when the toddler is recognizing letters and numbers and colors and you haven’t worked with her at all yet!  Those are the moments it’s all worth it and those are the memories that will stick with you.  Though I do have to say she’s pretty adorable sitting on the kid’s school books while they give her the “yes you’re adorable now please move” look.  

So remember, mama just starting to homeschool with a toddler, you can do this.  It does get easier and the memories you’re creating will last a lifetime.
Don’t forget to check out the other days of the blog series!

Day One:  Real Life Homeschool On A Farm

Day Two:  Real Life Homeschool on One Income

Day Three:  Real Life Homeschool Year Round

 

Discover real life in other homeschools with the Schoolhouse Review Crew bloggers! Join the blog hop to read more!

Real Life Homeschool Blog Hop

Blogs to visit on Day 4!!!

Life at Rossmont
A Stable Beginning
Happy Little Homemaker
Joyful Hearts and Faces
Day by Day in Our World
Mama’s Coffee Shop
Delightful Learning
Double O Farms
Tales of a Homeschool Family
Home Sweet Life
A Rup Life

Real Life Homeschool Year Round

I’m so glad you’re back for day three of the Real Life Homeschool Series!  Today we’re going to talk about Real Life Homeschool Year Round.

 

Real Life Homeschool Year Round

 

I tried homeschooling just during the normal school year like the public schools do, but it didn’t work for our family.  We tend to take a month-long break in the winter and smaller breaks when my husband has down time from his business(self-employed).  So, it made more sense to us as a family to school year round.  I also find that my special learners tend to forget things if they go more than a week without working at them.  With that being said we really try not to take more than a week off from the main subjects.

So for me, Real Life Homeschool Year Round was the answer.  Now don’t get me wrong.  My kids aren’t bent over notebooks and workbooks all day every day with no end in sight.  We do unit studies and whenever possible we do them outside!  Even when they were sick with the stomach bug this past month we all went out on the porch on the nice days and had read aloud and silent reading time.  I’m afraid a few times it wasn’t quite so silent as someone got sick, but such is life in a large family!

I want learning to be fun.  I want learning to be non stop.  For us, year round homeschooling is this.  We do Civil War Reenactments.  My children are learning that entire weekend.  That is more school for them even if they’re not realizing it.  They’re learning history.  They’re learning about and experiencing nature as well.  Plus I throw in some random things like doing math with helping me plan meals and measuring ingredients.  I might even be sneaky and have them read some old-time schoolbooks and do spelling words on slates.  I can be devious like that!

Like I mentioned above, Real Life Homeschool Year Round is what works best for us.  I’ve heard others do two months on and one month off.  Whatever works for you and your children is what you should!  Homeschooling is all about being able to be flexible and do what works for you.  

 Day One:  Real Life Homeschool On A Farm

Day Two:  Real Life Homeschool on One Income

Day Four:  Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler

 
Discover real life in other homeschools with the Schoolhouse Review Crew bloggers! Join the blog hop to read more!
 

Real Life Homeschool Blog Hop

 

Here are some blogs to hop on over to today!

Treasuring Life’s Blessings
Double O Farms
Simple Living Mama
Fried Clams and Sweet Tea
This Sweet Life
A Net In Time
Counting Pinecones
Some Call It Natural
Kingdom Academy Homeschool
Debbie’s Homeschool Corner

Real Life Homeschool on One Income

Welcome back to Day 2 of my Real Life Homeschool Blog Series!  Today we’re talking about Real Life Homeschool on One Income.  I know a lot of people are in this boat.  Several of those people I’m happy to call my friends!  We’re the mommies that stay home everyday with our children.  We not only teach them how to be kind and share but how to multiply and maybe speak a foreign language!

 

homeschooling on one income

 

My homeschool lives on one income.  If you’ve read my blog before you’ll know I’m a representative(or whatever the companies call them) for a few MLM companies.  I don’t do home parties or shows and rarely do facebook events.  I’m not huge on promoting them.  They are for products I love and use that I like to share with people.  I don’t normally share to make money but to say Hey I LOVE this!!!  I don’t consider that a form of income(well maybe I would if I actually made money).

So how does a large family with nine children homeschool on one income?  

Well, we’re frugal.  I love curriculum that isn’t workbook based or that allow for copying of the workbook.  The curriculum we use now is KONOS which is a unit study curriculum.  One book can be used for two to three years and you just use library books to supplement into it for teaching the lessons.  I LOVE this!  Libraries are free guys!  Use those libraries!

Unit studies are a great way to get a lot of subjects together without spending a lot of money.  I’ve written my own unit studies before and made some easy printables for my kids.  Our spelling words come from our unit study.  Our read alouds and reading time books correlate with the unit study.  Our history and science correlate with the unit study too!  And sometimes, if I’m extra creative, we can get math in there too!

Another way to have a real life homeschool on one income is to find free places to go for field trips.  A field trip can be a trip to the grocery store where your children  have helped you write the shopping list, help you find the items on the list, talk about why certain items have to be frozen or refrigerated, calculate how much money you are spending, and then help you count out the bills or change needed to pay for said groceries.

While you’re out and about on your grocery field trip, stop at the library for reading materials, have a picnic at a park, or visit a nursery to look at plants!  We get all of our school subjects in even though we’ve done none of our regular work just by learning as we go!  And we have fun too!   

So the key for me is to find resources that I can use for multiples ages without having to buy a ton of workbooks.  Those workbooks get expensive!  Also, take advantage of free activities in your area.  We live in the country but we go for nature walks on our farm and then journal what we saw, look it up to learn more about it, etc.  Local wildlife areas are great to visit as well.

I’ll share more about our homeschool and what real life is like around here in the next few days!

Don’t forget to check out my Day 1 post about Real Life Homeschooling on a Farm as well! 

Day Three:  Real Life Homeschool Year Round

Day Four:  Real Life Homeschool with a Toddler

 

Discover real life in other homeschools with the Schoolhouse Review Crew bloggers! Join the blog hop to read more!

 

Real Life Homeschool Blog Hop

Blogs to visit on Day 2!!

For This Season
Unexpected Homeschool
For Him and My Family
As We Walk Along the Road
Growing in His Glory
Homeschool Coffee Break
Daily Life
There Will Be A $5 Charge For Whining
Proverbial Homemaker
ElCloud Homeschool