As a relaxed homeschooling family, our family’s combined learning time is crucial to our everyday routine. When you’ve got multiple children learning- all at separate levels- consolidating your homeschool regimen as much as possible is an absolute must.
For us, this happens during our daily morning time.
As with all homeschooling techniques, morning time can and will look different for everyone. One thing that most families who incorporate this routine into their day will have in common is a morning basket.
The morning basket typically contains all of the supplies and books for anything that will be covered during this daily period.
Today, I’ll be sharing with you the morning basket I use with my middles at this point in our journey.
What’s in my homeschool morning basket?
Technically speaking our morning basket isn’t actually a basket at all; it’s a plastic bin I picked up at the Dollar Tree. Basket or bin, though, as long as it serves the purpose of keeping your materials in one handy place, it doesn’t matter what it actually looks like.
Now that that’s cleared up, let’s get started. 🙂
In the order that we use them each day, our morning basket supplies consist of:
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Our read-aloud time always follows our Bible time. Currently, we are reading through this book in the Harry Potter series. Sometimes our read-alouds coincide with whatever unit study we are working on at the time. Just as often, however, I choose books just for fun.
(These are the first rotation in our loop schedule, which I fully explained here.)
Since we do not use a traditional language arts curriculum, Mad Libs are a fun way for my kids to brush up on the parts of speech and simply enjoy spending time together.
Cursive Composition Books
(These are the second rotation in our loop schedule.)
As with grammar, we do not use any formal curriculum for cursive. I simply purchased some composition books for each of my kids in this group in which I write whatever letter we are working on at the time for them to trace and then write on their own. I also include words that are made up of any letters they’ve learned so that they can practice stringing them together.
Simple, just like I like it.
(This is the third rotation in our loop schedule.)
First let me point out that my kids do not actually journal during our morning time. That gets done later in the day during their individual notebooking time. The reason I keep my kids’ journals in our morning basket is that we use them to work on their grammar and punctuation skills.
During this time, I allow my kids to choose any journaling page they’ve completed, and I give them a specific skill to work on for the day. Some days I may tell them to underline all of the nouns on the page. Other days I may tell them to box in the verbs. Still other days I may have them carefully go through their writing to ensure any periods, commas, hyphens, etc. are in the right place.
I’ve found that this is much more effective than using a grammar book because they are correcting and improving their own work.
It really does make a difference.
I am having such a wonderful time reading through the history of our world with this book. I stick to one chapter a day. Sometimes I may have the kids narrate or complete a notebooking page, other times I may just read it. It all depends upon how extensive the rest of our plans are for the day.
However we approach it, though, it’s always an enjoyable time for us.
Since Thanksgiving is next month, this week we will start reading through this book together, using the Beautiful Feet Books Early American History Intermediate guide.
You may have noticed that we haven’t covered any science with our current basket contents, but keep in mind that we do change things up quite a bit. Just the other week, we finished up a 4-month-long unit study on the earth with our KONOS curriculum, so trust me, it all works out.
All in all, our morning time typically takes between 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours, which may sound excessive, but this period is really the crux of our homeschool routine. After this time each day, all my middles have left is their individual math, silent reading, and notebooking time.
So when you think about it, it only takes me between 2 to 2 1/2 hours a day to homeschool four of my children. Not bad when you think about it!
What about you? I’d love to hear about what’s in your morning basket. Leave a comment and share those resources!
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