Thursday, 7 April 2016

Your Homeschool Stories: A day in our life unschooling and my thoughts...

No day in our home is typical.  We don't follow a specific schedule or routine.  We are unschoolers.  This means that we live each day without school or subjects.  We follow the children's interests and our own too.  It woks for us, we love it!  Here is sort of how one day might go on a day we are home (some afternoons we are at the YMCA, or we have playdates and such).

6:50am TJ comes in to my room.  Baby JJ is still nursing/sleeping on me so I whisper for TJ to go play in the other room. He most likely is in his bed listening to his sleepy CD.

7:10am I ninja my way out of the bed.  TJ and I hang out and chat about the day.  We have breakfast, make coffee for Daddy and his lunch. We get daddy up for work.

7:30am Daddy and MJ get up. Daddy gets ready for work while MJ joins us for breakfast.

8:00am Daddy goes to work (we have our own business so daddy is downstairs in the office for a while before heading out for service work).  The boys practice their memory verses for AWANAS (church group) and we read our daily devotional.  Then the boys play playmobile.  Oh Baby JJ woke up.

9:00am I've been nursing, feeding, changing baby.  Dady comes to say good bye as he heads off to work.  The boys are getting antsy and not playing as well with each other.  I suggest they find another activity to do.  I read one of our library books while baby crawls about on the floor and playing.

9:30am We've been sitting around for a while and the boys are arguing.  I know it's time for some physical activity.  How about a dance party?  Everyone agrees.  I put JJ in the carrier and put on some fun music videos on the laptop.

10:00am JJ is ready for a nap. The boys have a snack and play quietly.  Once I'm done putting the baby down the boys play a mixture of educational and fun games on the iPads. Once the baby is down I sneak off to the office to do some paper work for our company.

11:00am Baby is up again. The weather is pretty good so we decide to go for a walk in the forest. The boys explore their favourite part of the trails.  They crack the ice with sticks, build a dam in the creek, and jump off logs.  Once they are thoroughly wet and cold we head home.  Luckily the forest is in our front yard so we aren't far from home.  We decide to have some hot chocolate and lunch.

Noon: Lunch and hot chocolate.  Lots of giggles and talking.  Baby JJ is learning to eat which truly amuses the boys.

12:30pm Baby is ready for another nap.  The boys play with trucks together. Once the baby is down I finish up with my office work.  Next the boys and I spend some time together.  MJ has asked to do experiments.  We do a few from the kit TJ got for his birthday one year, then they have fun doing their own concoctions. Some get frozen, otherwise it is time to clean the kitchen.

1:30pm Chores.  No they don't like to help but we have had a family meeting and the boys agree that everyone should help take care of the house.  I made a cleaning plan so that we do one room a day along with a few daily chores.  Today we vacuum the carpet in the family room, sort clean laundry into piles so it's easier to fold and tidy the toys in the family room.

2:00pm Baby JJ wakes up.  We all have a snack but the boys want something yummy.  We decide to bake cookies.  Of course MJ wanted to make his own thing. TJ helps to read the recipe and double it.  MJ tastes every ingredient and mixes some into a bowl.  We add the main batter to MJ's concoction and bake some delicious chocolate chip cookies.

3:00pm Hmmm what's next... The boys spend some time in their rooms playing with toys and listening to audio stories (they were fighting again. It's been a long winter that way). Then I send them outside to play for a bit.

4:30pm The boys play Wii while I start dinner. Baby JJ is getting tired so he's in the carrier.

5:00pm I put baby JJ down for another nap and then get back to making dinner.

5:30pm Dinner and then cleaning the kitchen together

6:00pm The boys climb all over daddy and hang out together.

6:30pm Baby is up.

6:45pm Evening routine starts.  Tonight the boys are watching The Incredibles and have a snack.

7:30pm We pause the movie.  Boys get ready for bed.  We read some stories together.

8:15pm Daddy goes to do prayers and tuck in TJ.  They chat for a while. Baby JJ and I tuck in MJ with a load of toys in his bed.

9:30pm I've been playing with baby JJ and tidying around the house. He is now ready for bed. MJ's popped up a few times looking for lego pieces to build a tractor in bed.



So I'm speaking from my heart here and pouring it all out. I'm not completely satisfied with how things are going.  It has been a long winter/spring with lots of fighting.  I feel like we need a stronger rhythm with more physical activity.  The boys seem to have lots the sparkle and curiosity they used to have. We are all adjusting to having a new family member, especially now that he is on the move.

We have been trying out some of our Waldorf curriculum again here and there.  The boys enjoy the stories and TJ's writing is improving quickly.  I feel so torn.  I am not fully unschooling, nor and I fully Waldorf.  I know I've written often about dropping labels and being confident in your own plans (you can read those posts HERE and HERE).  But since I don't fit in anywhere it can be a bit unnerving.  So we are swinging back and forth a bit trying to find a balance of what works for us.  As the seasons change, so too will our days.

I'd love to hear your thoughts.  
Please share about your day and how you balance different methods!