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Monday, September 16, 2013

A Day in the Life: Our Homeschool Routine. MFW 1st Grade

I get asked all the time when we "start" and "end". My answer is almost always, "We start after coffee and end when we get done".  Some days it is 11am and some days it is 1pm. Below is an example of typical day of our home-school if we are home all day.

We have more of a routine than a schedule.  My boys like to know what is coming next, but I don't want to be so structured that we can't be flexible.  The daily agenda (featured on right) helps me keep on track and show the boys what we will (hopefully) get done that day. I change it up each day, with some days including computer and some days including music.

The key for our family is a balance between planning and flexibility.  Without planning, NOTHING gets done.  Without flexibility we don't enjoy ourselves. It took us a few weeks to get into a groove, then sometimes we loose it completely.  My goal is to always be getting better, while still being OK with the days that just doesn't work.

Typical Weekday:

 Start at 9 or 9:30am
  • Calendar and calendar journal, 100's chart.   Spiderman likes to sit at the table to do his work, and Batman likes to lay on his belly on the blanket.  Either one works for me.
  • Bible- Proverbs or Bible activity in MFW 1st grade Teacher's manual 
  • MFW 1st Grade Student- Workbooks and Student Sheets, or Bible Reader and Notebook

  • Reading- Reading game from 1st grade Teacher's Manual (appendix) or Phonics Readers from our own collection or from Library. I usually take turn with he boys, depending on who gets done with their workbook or proverbs Copywork first.
  • Art- On days we do not have Bible Notebook, we use Draw, Write Now.  Drawing with Children did not work for us. Sometimes (if I am feeling very creative) I look on pinterest a craft that suits the story or science. I usually have one boy doing art while I read a phonics reader with the other.
  • Break of 20 to 30 minutes.  Essential for all of us, especially in first grade.  I get some materials ready for afternoon or throw a load of laundry in.  They play  on the kids trampoline or with toys.
  • Math time- We use Math-U- See. 

Batman was "teaching" us about Place Value.
 They love when I play student.
  • Lunch and 30 to 60 minutes of Rest Time.  If they don't nap, they look at books or draw quietly in their beds. This is essential if you are a mom who works from home.
Depending on the day the afternoon consists of a one to three of the following:
  • Library Trip on Mondays- pick up already reserved online books for next two weeks.
  • Outdoor play  
  • Board Games or Playing Legos (counts as problem solving right?)
  • Reading Books from Book Basket
  • Nature walk or exploration day Science experiment 
  • Art Project listed in 1st Grade Teacher's Manual or from Pinterest 
  • PBS Kids.  This is true if Mommy has work to do or sickNetflix is that because I have no voice I can set up an episode of The Magic School Bus that goes with our science.

  • Computer Time about 30 minutes each and I try (don't always succeed) in picking their first game, like asking them to make sure they do a "Keyboarding game" before "building a robot".

Other Weekly Activities:
If we have a weekday morning activity, we only do the light afternoon projects, like book basket and nature walk. We also take Field Trips.

Heading to first day of Co-Op
  • Field Trips throughout the year. Sometimes we go with other home school families from our co-op, and sometimes we just hit a nature center by ourselves.
  • Bible Study Fellowship.  
    • Tuesday 9-11am Seriously GREAT preschool and school age program for men and women.  Find a class near you and you will be glad you did.
  • Co-Op Wednesday 9:am to 12:30pm 
  • Lego Club- once a month in the afternoon
  • Upwards Basketball


  1. thank you so much! Your blog is soooooo helpful to this new HS mom

    1. Yay, I am so grateful anything I've learned can be helpful on your journey! You can do this!