Living Stones Academy

Educating by atmosphere, discipline, and life

Homemaking in the making

on August 17, 2010

My journey started with my introduction to Managers of Their Homes. Then I started reading A Charlotte Mason Companion, which addresses parenting as well as homeschooling (and with parenting comes caring for the home as an example to the children). Then one day I picked up my Amish cookbook, and remembered a similar book from my childhood called More With Less, put out by the Mennonite community, and I added it to my Amazon wishlist. Steve then bought it for me. Then I attended a bread demo class given by our ombudsman and fellow homeschool group member.

Now things are coming together, though I’m still on the road to self-discipline to make everything happen. But we have a schedule now, and eventually we’ll stick to it. 🙂

For school, I have the following times set down:

9:45a—Personal Development
10:15a—Preschool time
3:00p—Alternate activity

Obviously there are other things in between and before and after all that, but those particular “subjects” or parts of school have a different focus each day. And for those CM purists, or other homeschool experts, who think I’m nuts doing school until 3 in the afternoon with youngsters, please rest assured that it is not continuous school all day. Merely school is made to be broken up so as to avoid little kid burnout. The alternate activity at 3 is meant to be “fun” or at least directed busy time.

I’ve also decided to break up my household management into different focuses for each day.  Like everything else, though, it’s flexible, so if it makes more sense to do freezer cooking on Wednesday instead of Tuesday, or to cover numbers for preschool time on Monday instead of Thursday, then we do. For instance, last night (Monday) we attended a Japanese celebration (except for one guy cooking, we were the only white folk). The kids got play a traditional kids’ game of catching goldfish. That covers the Alternative Activity of Culture Study, which is normally on Tuesday, so today (Tuesday) we’ll instead try a Handicraft.But here’s how school and house rotate:

Monday

Personal Development: Manners
Preschool Time: Letter of the week
Alternative Activities: Handicrafts or housework
Household focus: Laundry; bathe kids
Kitchen focus: Bread Day

Tuesday

Personal Development: Habits
Preschool Time: Shapes
Alternative Activities: Culture Study
Household focus: Bathrooms; living room
Kitchen focus: Freezer food day

Wednesday

Personal Development: Safety
Preschool Time: Colors
Alternative Activities: “Little Mozarts” (piano studies for little guys; will start once I have a chance to sit down with the books and work out a schedule of lessons)
Household focus: Laundry; entryway and porch
Kitchen focus: Pantry food day (mixes, rubs, cereals, etc)

Thursday

Personal Development: Health
Preschool Time: Numbers
Alternative Activities: Art activity
Household focus: Bedrooms; kids’ baths
Kitchen focus: Menu planning (for following week)

Friday

(No PD, PA, or AA on Fridays, we are trying for only 4 days of school focus)
Household focus: Laundry; kitchen
Kitchen focus: Grocery shopping, farmer’s market day

Saturday

Household focus: Garage; outdoors

I’ve been asked to blog about these experiences, especially my kitchen stuff. So I’ll start a series on what we do each day. For now I’ll try to blog about the kitchen stuff, with pictures. Those posts will be in my new blog section, Old Fashioned Home, New Fashion Way.  For Chrissy Johnson, this is all in lieu of the blog on bread that you asked me to write, and that you took pictures for. 🙂 I don’t know if you’ve figured it out yet, but I usually feel the need to give background info when I talk about, explain, or discuss anything. Bad habit. 😛 Blog on bread day will follow soon.  As it is I barely had time to do THIS without the kids killing each other! Time for habits and manners . . .

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2 responses to “Homemaking in the making

  1. Laura Dubnow says:

    I love that you are blogging and brave enought to home school, how you find the time I will never know. You must be very, very, very organized.
    Between work, school, home, PTA, and Pre-school board obligations. I can hardly keep up with the chore chart(that me kids love, love, love). My hat goes off to you and I will be following your blog, for sure!
    Love and miss you,
    Laura and family

    • sixsmoothstones says:

      HA! Organized my BUTT! LOL That’s what I’m working on. But the glory of homeschooling is your schedule is your own, and if you end up doing phonics work after dinner before bed, heck, at least you did it! A schedule is there more to remind you and give you a focus, and that’s what I’m working on . . focus. LOL I’m also glad to be starting now, with kindergarten/preschool, and following Charlotte Mason method which discourages bookwork at this age, because homeschooling some days means phonics is pointing to a bird on a walk and saying, “Bird starts with what sound? What letter?” Preschool time is pointing to a cherry tree in bloom as you drive by on the way to the grocery store: “What colors do you see on that tree?” Picking up a ball as you clean the room: “What shape is this?” As you’re getting in the car and the kids yell, “Look! Spider!”, you respond, “And how many legs does the spider have?” Math is, as you’re measuring out flour to make bread: “You tell me when I’ve reached the number 4 line” or “We only need half of that, so I’ll measure to the 2 instead of the 4, because 2 is half of 4.” It’s following Charlotte’s encouragement that life itself is educational if you pay attention. 🙂
      Thanks for the compliments, but I could never be a working mom, homeschool or not. Even with one kid I couldn’t imagine it. No old ideas of “woman’s place is in the home”, I just could never physically keep up! So my hat is OFF to you Auntie! 😀
      Love you too!
      Tanya

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