A Day At The Burrow

I’d like to think that we have our days scheduled and we follow it perfectly. But honestly, that’s a laugh. With four kids that are five and under, we get plenty of curve balls thrown our direction. In fact, while I try and type this out, I’ve got a two year old screaming at me that he “wants to cuddle” and honestly, nothing will stop this sweet, stubborn boy.

So here I sit typing and teaching and trying to encourage my other children and not let the baby get trampled on as his older brother clambers on top of me. It’s a lot to juggle.

We start our days off with breakfast. It’s usually gourmet and with all the fixings…and by gourmet, I mean cereal and milk. It’s what they ask for, so that’s what they get. During this time we listen to our monthly hymn. This month our hymn is Savior, Like A Shepherd Lead Us. We’re following the monthly plan by Happy Hymnody. We eat breakfast and sing along, and the kids fight over asking Alexa to repeat the song. When they’re done eating, they clear the table and do the dishes.

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After breakfast we try to have morning time. Our morning time consists of our read aloud and our Bible story. Currently we’re reading Charlotte’s Web and our Bible story comes from the Jesus Storybook Bible. This time is hit or miss depending on their moods. I tend to let them play quietly as they listen to me read. They have chosen to play either Lego or with their dinosaurs lately. Today we made a pallet and snuggled and pretended to be camping while we read. I liked this a lot because the kids were actually quiet and listening, so I think we’ll try this method again and see if it works. After we read, my oldest narrates what we just read in the chapter.

Then comes getting dressed and making beds while I attempt to get lessons organized for the day and get the baby down for his morning nap. If I’m lucky, the kids cooperate, but I’m rarely lucky. Most of the time I have at least one other child screaming at me for something.

Our only daily subjects are poetry, math, and copywork. Poetry might be our favorite lesson of the day. We have a poet a week and read a poem of theirs a day. When we’re done with the poem, Johanna draws a picture describing what she heard.  Math is a little harder for us to enjoy, but I try to make it fun. During math, the baby tends to wake up and join us for the lesson.

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After math, we rotate between science and reading lessons. Our science is simple, because she’s in kindergarten and I like simple. So for science, she gets to watch an episode of Wild Kratts and then tells me about what she learned. For reading we’re working our way through Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. I’ve heard great things about this book, so I have high hopes for it. Honestly, Johanna isn’t really into reading right now, so I’m trying not to force her.

Finally, we end the day with copywork. Right now we’re working our way through the alphabet and just copying down our letters. I hope to add sightwords into our copywork, but I haven’t figured out how to incorporate that just yet.

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Lunch, rest, and play end out our day. We try to get outside, but since it’s still in the 90s here, it hasn’t been easy. Hopefully, it’ll start cooling own soon and we’ll be able to get out more.

I leave a lot of room in our day for breaks and meltdowns, and if we don’t get it all accomplished, that’s okay! I try to be flexible, but it’s not easy. Things are bound to change as we work on finding a rhythm that works for us. We’re learning how to do this together, so there are bound to be plenty of growing pains, but I’m pleased with where things are now.

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First Week Disasters

Last week was our first week of homeschooling, and let’s just say, it didn’t go completely as I imagined it would. I didn’t expect for it to be all rainbows and sunshine, but I honestly didn’t expect it to be such a disaster.

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Our first day was last Tuesday. My daughter was eager to learn and excited about school. My boys however, were complete terrors. They demanded all of my attention. My two year old screamed if I wasn’t holding him, he screamed if I was holding him, he screamed and he screamed and he screamed. My four year old was a little better, but he still was upset because he couldn’t do what big sister was doing. My baby was an angel, he slept most of the short school day.

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Our second day was only slightly better, the boys were better behaved, but my oldest was not happy with her school day.  Plus, we had a doctor appointment in the middle of our day and that threw everything off.

Thursday was rough. Nobody wanted to do anything. They followed me around screaming all day. We took a break after lunch and tried to reset after rest time. Friday was filled with another doctor appointment and then the day was shot from there.

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Basically, I failed the first week. Nothing I was doing was working. It was a day filled with screaming. I needed a reset. Our school needed a reset. So I spent the weekend researching and coming up with things I could do differently.

I discovered that I needed a different mindset. I wanted to do work and get things accomplished NOW! I needed to change my goals. I needed to expand. SHE’S ONLY IN YEAR 0 (kindergarten). Right now it’s not about sitting and learning. It’s about learning through play. I can’t expect my 5 year old to sit and for things to immediately click for her. I can’t expect my boys to behave while I give her my attention. I can’t expect them all to be quiet and sit still while I do our read alouds. I needed a me change.

So here’s to a new week with a new outlook and filled with a whole lot of grace.

 

Almost

School started around us at the beginning of August, but we didn’t plan to start until after Labor Day. No real reason for that other than I wanted to enjoy our freedom for a little bit longer. That’s the beauty of homeschooling, you get to decide your schedule and how and when you want to start! I love having the freedom!

So here we are, less than a week before we start. I’m would be lying if I said I wasn’t anxious. My stomach fills with butterflies every time I start thinking about next Tuesday. Is what I have planned good enough? Am I going to fail her for life? What was I thinking when we decided we were going to homeschool? How in the world am I going to be able to do this with three other highly demanding children?

I’m assuming these are all normal questions and doubts for everyone who has decided on taking this route in their child’s education. (And yes, I do know what they say about assuming). Thankfully, I’ve found a community of moms online and here at home that are filled with such encouraging words from me. I don’t feel so alone now. That and the overwhelming peace I feel about our decision despite the doubts, I know we’re doing the right thing.

This last week before school starts we’ve spent our time getting our little school nook ready. As much as I’d love a whole room devoted to school, we don’t really have that luxury in our house. Instead, I’ve created a little homeschool nook for us to enjoy. It’s not finished quite yet, I still want to add a few posters, draw a calendar on the chalkboard, and add a shelf above the desk, but I’m loving the way it’s turned out so far! So far, the youngest two love to play under the desk while I’m working and the older two like to look at books at their little table.

I’m hoping this setup will work well for us and I’ll be able to manage this crazy household. I’ll let y’all know next week how our first week goes. I’m giving myself plenty of grace when it comes to managing and hopefully after the first six weeks we’ll have a good routine going on.

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The Journey Begins

It’s been a long time coming. A long time that I’ve spent contemplating what I wanted this space to be. Honestly, I still am undecided on what exactly is going to happen here. But I knew it was time to start this little space.

So here I am. Typing away and trusting that I’ll go where I’m supposed to go.

For now, I can tell you that this space will be about our homeschooling journey. Our life with four kids five and under. Our attempts at homesteading (which for now is just a future dream). And us just figuring out life as we go along.

What this won’t be: a perfect space. This will not be a place for only the picture perfect moments, I plan to share my failures along with the triumphs. I want to share real life with y’all. That includes all of the struggles that life will undoubtedly throw my way.

Anyway.

For now, I welcome you to our little Burrow. I hope you can make yourself at home here too.

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