OCT
22
2009

What’s A Typical Day Like?

What is my typical day like?
I had someone ask and didn’t think I could fit it in comments LOL! So here goes…please keep in mine that we are flexible as we have a baby, and unforeseen events daily it seems that cause us to veer off course, but Steady as she goes is my moto! Often you’ll hear “Back to boxes!” coming from me (every few minutes it seems)…especially with the boy who has taken to ‘disappearing’ between boxes, or when we have to stop an activity because the baby has opened a drawer and emptied its contents all over the school room. Wednesdays are different as the girls have dance from noon-2, so we just start earlier to accommodate this. And I’ve kindly spared listing the billion times a day I save my baby from choking hazards and falling off the stairs to her death. Oh and the 3am feedings that we still do because I can’t stand to let her ‘cry it out’. But…with all that said, here’s our ‘plan’ for each day, and I really DO try to follow it! Okay, are you ready?

8:00: Read 1 Psalm & shower for mom as I can’t function with out one
8:30: Breakfast/dishes/toss in load of laundry and/or start dishwasher
9:00: School bell rings (yes, I really have a bell courtesy my mom! They LOVE it!)

9:00 – 10:00: Group time, we all do the following together:

  • Calendar, days of week, months of year, counting calendar/hanging pattern chains by each day, put up new weekday discuss yesterday and tomorrow.
  • Bible: Pray, Sing songs, do bible study, discuss, review

10am - Workboxes, everyone starts at the same time…this is immediately followed by what I like to think of as organized chaos ;o) (It typically takes us 2 hrs or so to go through our 10 boxes, some days more…)

12noon: Lunch! Followed by outside play, and a few moments for me to do dishes and gather what little sanity I have left before moving on…I also load boxes for the next day during playtime and swap out my laundry to the dryer. Baby goes down for nap.

1:30pm: Science or Geography & fun stuff, this is when we do our Expedition Earth activities and I usually save crafts, art projects, science type experiments etc for this time. (We may also run errands if needed around this time after the baby wakes up of course!)

4pm: Chores like laundry, we have LOTS of laundry, It should be done by now, so we all fold and everyone puts away their own stuff! I usually have my 6yr old help my 3yr old, if she doesn’t want to I will, I don’t make her. (This is different for each family, but I have a chore chart posted in my kitchen and I pay .25/chore. So if someone wants to make money, they’ll go see what needs to be done and do it! This has helped me out a lot! Friday’s are prize day and we go to the dollar store and let them buy something with their earnings,then some goes to Jesus and some goes to savings.

 

Some kid friendly tasks:

  • Swapping clothes from washer to dryer
  • Setting the table for dinner
  • Emptying the dishwasher (5 and 6 yr old)
  • Making their beds
  • Feeding the dogs (2 of them!) and cat (1 of them!)
  • Sweeping the kitchen floor (my 5 yr old is excellent at this!)
  • Cleaning dishes after meals (my 6 yr old just started this, everyone brings their own plate from table to counter and she washes and puts in dishwasher)
  • Vacuuming (Really more for the 6 yr old, but I’ll let my 5yr old do his room…he likes it)
  • Dusting: Give them little dust rags, or Clorox wet wipes and turn them loose!

5:00pm: Start Dinner…

5:45pm: 10 Minute Tidy: This is where I set a timer and everyone runs around like maniacs cleaning up anything can they find so when Daddy comes home the house is a clean and serene oasis, and he thinks its like that all day ;o)…sorry honey, the secret is out…please don’t come home any earlier than 5:50 unannounced or my reputation will be ruined forever.

6:00pm: Dad enters & asks “So, what did you do all day?” I say “Not much, just lounged around and ate bon-bons.” Dad quizzes kids to make sure I’m kidding.

6:10ish Dinner/dishes/sweep kitchen floor (Seriously, how does it get destroyed after 1 meal?)

7pm-7:30: Bath, family devotions & bedtime – Clean up playroom, take baths, go to bed! My 2nd grader saves her reading assignments to do with Dad after the others have gone to bed so she stays up an extra 30minutes or so. If I didn’t get to box loading earlier, she’ll help me now since she likes to.

8pm: Free time for mom and dad….sit down, sigh…blog…laminate…work for church etc. and praise God we made it through another homeschool day without burning down the house! Aside from hanging out with my husband here are some of the things I do during my “free time”, I also try to do this during playtime if there’s a lull. I know this sounds a little crazy but I was definitely spending too much time on school stuff etc, so having it broken down has helped me not only get it done, but have actual FREE time at night with my husband:

  • Mon: Work on letter stuff for next week
  • Tues: Print letter stuff
  • Wed: cut/laminate letter stuff…then wonder why I’m doing all this work for prek ;o)
  • Thurs: Work on workbox schedule for following week
  • Friday: Gather materials for following week.
  • Weekends: Family time!

10ish: My devotion time…nice and quiet, and I’ve settled down from all the madness of the day. Then I go to bed and pray for God to order my steps for tomorrow that I might get everything done HE wants me to do, and not spend time on stuff that wastes my precious time!

So that’s our schedule for what its worth, hectic, but ordered. Hey, you asked!

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Comments

  1. Thanks for the inspiring and amusing post. I really need to get my act together!

    • I am the same way Denise! Really need to get my act together and make this family on a schedule so I can stop feeling at the end of the day that another wasted day has gone by and we didn’t accomplish what the Lord wants us too. I’m spending too much time on “wasted stuff” like she mentions at the end of her post. I just love this site! Very inspirational! :) Good luck to you and your family!

  2. I loved this post! I do the same thing before my husband gets home.

  3. You are awesome! Loved this post, especially the husband part…sounds just like our family, lol!

  4. This is such a helpful post! I have a 3 year old and almost 2 year old. I feel like I am running around like a crazy woman and not getting anything accomplished until I made a schedule last week. I just read yours and it makes me feel so reassuring to stay on schedule and it sure is organized ciaos. Thank you for putting in your scheduled time in to your blog because I only have one other Mommy to talk to about homeschool so thank you!!!:))) Oh, and we love your Letters of the Week…we are on our 2nd week.

  5. I find that my biggest factor is the planning time. I get so caught up in it. My husband looks at me everytime asking when it's his time. LOL. I will have to use your schedule. Thank you for sharing!

  6. Just stumbled across your blog and this is SO helpful! I literally have a notebook out taking notes on all this…what a great schedule! Thank you!

  7. This is exactly what I needed to read. I have 2 toddlers and am trying to decide between public school and homeschooling. Your organization is exactly how my mind works, so this is so helpful!! Thank you for posting this and your amazing blog. (I think I sent you an e-mail by accident…I thought I was leaving a post, but realized I clicked on the wrong icon.)

  8. Thanks for the schedule. It is helping me create our own type of schedule. I also LOVE the break down of what you do when so that you're not always preparing for school at night. Do you have a picture or print out of your chore chart that is posted? I'd love to institute that and I have been researching how others do it. Thanks for all your great ideas and helps.

  9. Kelly: Sorry, I thought I had my chore chart posted but I guess I don't! I'll have to do that, thanks!

  10. I just found your site and I am devouring information! I have decided you are my new hero… seriously…. I just started homeschooling recently and we have had a lot of chaos at my house, but I think YOU just managed to help me out a lot. I am going to have to invest in some sort of workbox type thing in order to plan out our day. :) I am relieved…. I have been looking at all there is to do and not been able to understand how to get it all done. Thanks for the ideas!

  11. Thanks for posting your schedule! Love the workbox idea for organization. I also have 4 kiddos (2nd grade, K-3, 18mo tiny tot and 4mo baby)…talk about being pulled every direction at once! Since you've gone through tiny tot stages, how do you get school done w/them around? It's a very grabby hands/all attention on me age. For us with a baby also, it makes helping the other two very difficult. Any tiny tot/baby advice? Also, I see that the kiddos go to bed between 7:30-8:00pm. When do they wake up? Mine are up by 6:30-7:00am and the 3yr old wants breakfast right away. Thus causing everyone to eat at different times and the madness of unorganization to begin our day.

    • I’m curious about this, too!

      Erica, Do your kids go straight to sleep when you put them to bed? What time do your kids wake up? My kids are up way before me (oops!) and ready to eat very early.

  12. I love your schedule!! I just have one question. WHEN do you make dinner?

  13. Caroline: I usually start dinner around 5pm or so, earlier on nights when we have swim lessons. But typically I start around 5pm and we eat around 6pm :o)

  14. wow, this is amazing! =D Love it! I'm definitely going to follow your example with my homeschooling!

  15. Wow, this is awesome! Love it! Thanks for sharing! :)

  16. Wow! Thank you for sharing! I may have missed this but where do you get your lesson plans? I don't home-school yet, so I don't know how it works. Thank you : )

  17. Kimberly: Depends on which lesson plans you're talking about. The lessons for my LOTW stuff come in the purchased version. Lesson plans for other subjects come with the curriculum I buy for each subject.If that doesn't answer your question feel free to email me at homeschoolerconfessions {at} gmail {dot) com

  18. Quick question,
    Do you do one load of laundry every day? If so, is that how you keep it manageable?
    Love your schedule! I like the idea of 10 PM devotion. I was trying to do mine in the morning, but found that it wasn’t getting done well or regularly enough!
    Thanks,
    Connie

    • Connie: Yes, I do 1 load everyday. I put it in right before breakfast, change it to the dryer whenever it beeps or i notice it is dry, then have one of the kids fold it after school during chore time. Everyone puts their own laundry away except the baby, I do hers and mine and my husband’s. Some days it ends up being 2 loads depending on the craziness of the day before. We do swimming twice a week so that results in extra towels and suits that need to be done twice a week. Ugh…laundry….

  19. I know this is an old post, but I just found it and I have a silly question: When do you blog?? It seems like your day is filled! :)

  20. Rossandra Botelho says:

    Oi Erica. Saudações em Cristo.
    Moro no Brasil, na cidade de João Pessoa e tenho acompanhado o seu blog e sua incrível rotina com 4 crianças. Você realmente está de parabéns, rs..porque eu tenho uma rotina corrida aqui. Sou mãe de 2 meninas de 7 e 4 anos de idade, esposa de pastor, missionária facilitadora no PEPE (Programa de Educação Pré-Escolar) que funciona em nossa igreja, além de ensinar na Escola Bíblica de 9-11 anos. Aqui no país não podemos ser homescholling, a lei não permite. Mas tenho me inspirado em sua homeschooll. Obrigada.
    E agora lendo sua rotina, também vou fazer algo parecido para sobrar mais tempo para meu Deus e minha família, que amo tanto.
    Bençãos.
    Rossandra

    • Caro Rossandra,
      Obrigado pela atenção! Meu Português não é bom, mas eu queria dizer que eu estou contente você está encontrando meu blog útil! Eu sempre gosto de ouvir como Deus usa o meu blog para abençoar outras famílias! Em Cristo, Erica

      • Voce fala Portugues??? Que legal!!! Por essa eu nao esperava :)

        I just found your website, and it’s been so inspirational for me. My husband and I just started thinking of homeschooling, and the whole idea for me is very overwhelming. I can’t imagine my children in public school, and private Christian schools are so expensive! But I thought I give homeschool a try and see how it goes, if it doesn’t seem to work for me, we can sacrifice and do private.

        But your blog makes it sound so manageable, although when I see all you do all day I get tired just to think of doing all that! Do you have someone who cleans your house for you? I can’t imagine having do do ALL that school prep, teaching, AND clean & cook!!!! Oh…AND find time for devotion/prayer/bible study! Wow! Maybe it’s easier as you’re doing it?

        LOVE your school room!!!

        One question-I’m sure you’re plenty busy to respond, but if you have free time and see this, it would be greatly appreciated!

        –My husband and I are originally from Brazil, and we speak Portuguese-only with our 18 month daughter (I’m also due in Nov), and I our plan was to speak only Portuguese to our children, and once they start “school” they would pick-up English easily. But now homeschooling will make that more confusing. Do you have any experience, or seeing people who were able to teach their children in both languages? So that they are fluent in both languages? Any advice is appreciated! :)

  21. Annie Roszkoski says:

    When the kids are working through their workboxes, are you working with them individually? I have just started homeschooling and using work boxes. I have a first grader, preK, preschooler and a teeny tot. It has hard to get to all of them so I was wondering how you work it out. Thanks!

    • Hi Annie,
      It’s kind of a balancing act, but yes, I am working with them individually. I try to staggar them, so that while I’m teaching math or phonics to my kindergartner, the other two are doing typing or handwriting, then we swap, and the kindie and 2nd do something independent while I teach the 3rd grader etc. It’s kind of an organized chaos if you will :o)

      I do as many subjects together as I can, but for the core stuff, I just don’t see anyway around teaching them individually…

  22. This is our first year homeschooling. Thanks for posting all the useful information and especially the CHORE CARDS!!! It was exactly was I was looking for! You saved me lots of time and since I have been going to bed at 3am for the last few days I most certainly do appreciate the extra time to sleep! thanks again.

  23. Hi Erica!

    I was reading this entry and WOW!!! Thank you so much for this… I do have a question does your Kindergartener have 10 work boxes? What subjects are they or are the subjects and games/ activities?

    Thanks so much.. oh and by the way I had shown my husband the picture of your school room and he was so inspired we went out to Ikea and he made me my own office area and really fixed up our school room….THANK YOU!!! I will have to post pics on my blog soon!!

    Monica Godoy
    NY

  24. Erica,
    Would you mind terribly posting where your bell came from? I have been searching and cant find anything : /

  25. So your workboxes are divided by subject? I’m trying to picture how this works. What about the instruction that goes with each assignment? Do you travel around the table and teach the lesson before the worksheet (I’m thinking about Saxon Math, specifically) or do you call them up to the board for an individual lesson? I am struggling with balancing the instruction time for both kiddos, and would love to know if you have an idea on an effective way to balance independent work with one while the other is receiving instruction. Love your blog–thank you!!!

    • Hi Amy,
      Yes, the workboxes are divided by subject. I put one subject in each drawer. Well, sometimes we share and put 2 subjects in 1 drawer. I do my best to staggar the drawers so that while I am teaching one child, the other 2 are doing independent work, then we switch. We will all do one subject at a time wherever I can because it’s easier. It’s really a balancing act, and you’ll probably have to figure out what works best with your curriculum. My kids have about half they do on their own, then half that requires me to teach so I do my best to alternate.

  26. First off, I’m new to your site (and homeschooling) and I am amazed at how structured you at least attempt to be with your children. I’m having a difficult time getting there with just one child!
    My son is not quite 5. He’s a little ahead of the game, and I’m going to attempt a more structured classroom setting beginning in January. Partly because I think he’d benefit from a bit more “class time” and not just bits a pieces all day doing some handwriting here, some counting there, which seems to bore and aggravate him; and partly because we’re expecting our second in March and I’d like him to have some of this under his belt before she comes along.
    So, to cut to the chase, my question is: did you start any of your children with a science program when they were 4 or 5? If so, what would you recommend? And if not, did you attempt to cover some science at all and how? My hang up right now seems to be just with science and geography. I’d like him to start as early with these two areas as he does with other basics. Also, we aren’t a Christian household, but I’ve read through a few sample pages of the Exploring Creation series you mention using and am very impressed.
    Thanks for your help!

    • Hi Charla,
      No, at age 4-5 you really don’t need to (in our state you aren’t even required to) cover anything but the basics, so like handwriting, phonics, and math. I did add in some basic community worker type things, but that was it. My 4 yr old did do our Expedition Earth with us last year, but really that’s just because we were doing it with the older kids and so she joined in.

      If she were my oldest I never would have done that until she was in probably 1st grade. Check out your state requirements, for us you aren’t even required to list them as being homeschooled until they are 7 years old. Now, I do start in preschool, then do kindergarten at 5 which is still mostly basics of math, reading, writing, phonics. Then we do 1st grade at age 6 and I start reporting them then just because mine have birthdays that occur during the school year so I have to.

      If you’re just looking for some fun things you can do, the Usborne Science with Water, Usborne Science with Air, and Usborne Science Outdoors books are great. They have simple little lessons with an easy to do experiment that is usually pretty fun. We did those when my oldest was in Kindergarten.

      Hope that helps some!

  27. I will be homeschooling next school year for the very first time. I will have a K and 3rd grader along with a brand new baby and a toddler. I have struggled with the scheduling and how to make sure the necessary things get accomplished. This is SO helpful!

  28. Trying to understand the work boxes. We have done the chore packs from titus2.com.I have put lessons in their packs, but are your lessons on index cards? In what kind of box? My cousins are Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar (19 kids and Counting)and they told me about the chore packs. We love them! We love the freedom home educating give us.

  29. I know this is a million years late… but I just found the cutest cleaning tools sized for little ones at Lakeshore learning. For anyone who is wanting to get their kiddos busy with some sweeping and mopping, these look adorable: http://www.lakeshorelearning.com/seo/ca%7CsearchResults~~p%7C2534374302137518~~f%7C/Assortments/Lakeshore/ShopByCategory/dramaticplay/houseplay.jsp

  30. Lindsey Hibbert says:

    Hi, I am really new to the idea of doing homeschool. A friend referred me to your website! I am way excited to have found a way to organize things. I am still a little overwhelmed though. I currently have a 4 year old and a 1 year old. I am really needing to start some more formal things for my 4 year old, but don’t know where to start. Would love any advice and direction in relation to your website. I know it’s pretty organized and should be self explanatory, but I am so overwhelmed:-) Thank you so much for reading this. Looking forward to your response. Thanks

    Lindsey

  31. Kimberly Robbins says:

    How in the world do you get cleanup, bath, family devotions and bed done in 30 minutes! ;) We start at 7:30 with bath and get them in bed by 9:00p (1 yr old, 3 yr old, and 5 yr old)….

  32. I just stumbled upon your website yesterday after some Pinteresting :) I LOVE your schedule! We’re starting our first year of homeschooling this coming fall and I gotta admit to being a little bit scared :)

  33. Hi Erica, I always look at your schedule because I can see how well it would work for my family. Our situation just changed and on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays I’m working at church with a couple children who go to school there, but because there are only 3 extra children I know Group time would work perfectly, however I was wondering about things like how you do the days of the week, months of the year etc…? Do you sing songs and if you do what songs do you sing? I would love to do this with all the children I think it will make a huge difference to our days.

  34. Thank you. I don’t comment as often as I should, but I can’t tell you how much your blog has helped me and given me ideas to keep our home running *semi*smoothly. Our kids are all still pre-school age so I haven’t started a very rigid curriculum just yet, but I feel like it will help to already have a schedule in place to build the framework for our next stage in life when we get there… right now though, I’m just trying to keep us all fed and napping in halfway clean clothes on a fairly consistent schedule! Haha! Thank you again, sincerely!

  35. wow, im sooo happy I came across your blog. I have it in my heart to homeschool my kids but i just didnt know how and where to start. Bless it be the name of Jesus and Glory to Him that I found you. you have blessed me so much. THANKS TO JESUS for you =D

  36. Hi, I love your post, but I have a question about when do you shop for groceries, clothes, pay bills, etc? All of the “keeping the home” activities? I can’t seem to find enough time to do everything around the house and cleaning and homeschooling lol

  37. Hi there Erica,
    I liked the way you start your day with Devotion , I am going to stick to it from now on no matter how busy I think I am .
    Your organization tips and the Tour of the homeschool classroom has helped immensely (so colorful, fun and positive), I now feel much more on top of things because of the changes I have made.
    Thank you so much !

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