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From: Heidi (
Subject:         Re: Do you have any schedules at all?
Date: July 30, 2007 at 7:05 pm PST

In Reply to: Do you have any schedules at all? posted by joann on July 13, 2007 at 6:32 am:

Hello, Joann. I just saw your post about schedule, so I thought I'd
share. I have a 10 yod and two boys ages 8 and 2. We actually do
have a daily schedule, but not for academics. We set aside time for
chores, couch time (read alouds), mommy time (one on one time
with that child), etc. When I say schedule, I don't mean that I have
down times for things, i.e. "9:15 - Couch time". I just have a basic
flow of our day that I found works best for us - I guess a better
word for it would be "routine". At the breakfast table (usually
sometime b/w 8 and 10), we go over our scripture memory and the
kids and I tell each other the verses we've learned or if they want, I
find a new verse for them. After b'fast, we do some chores
(because I don't any of them getting in the habit of making messes
and letting someone else clean them up), after about 15 minutes or
so of that (they like for me to set the timer to see if they can beat it
) we all sit on the couch and we each pick books and we sit a spell
and read. Then I've got time set aside for "mommy time" with my
8yob. I ask him what he would ike to do - usually a board or card
game or lego's. During this time my oldest gets to play with the
baby all by herself ( a much coveted job in this house - we love
babies!). Then we all have a couple hours before one of us makes
lunch (we rotate), the baby goes down for a nap, the other two and
I have "room time": time that we are each in our own rooms
reading, resting, doing whatever we want to do on our own. I had
them tell me some things that they would like to do during room
time and I got any supplies they needed (scissors, glue, mazes,
stationary, audiobooks, etc) and put them in a bucket for room
time and a list of ideas in case they get bored and want an idea.
For my room time, I read, sleep, do email or whatever I want or
need to do. After room time, my oldest and I have "mommy time"
- usually beading, playing a board game or doing Spelling Power or
writing letters - whatever she chooses. Then we all do whatever
for a couple hours until afternoon chores to put the house back
together again :) and prepare supper (again, we rotate). Then
supper, lots of good conversation, some more reading on the
couch before bed. It sounds a little more structured than it actually
is, all of this is a basic framework that we work with and change as
the family needs change. I just noticed that they were much
happier knowing what to expect during the day and knowing that
certain things were going to happen that day: time alone with me,
time alone with the baby, reading lots of books on the couch, they
each get a chance to cook with me - these are the things that we
all love to do and so we do them and make sure we take care of
our messes in between.

Your son sounds quite a bit like my oldest. She taught herself to
read and was reading books by age 4. Because of her desire for
academics, I have made them available to her sparingly. During
her room time, she likes to do Saxon, Italic and Building Thinking
Skills along with littlest pet shop, lego's, sewing and beading.
During her mommy time, she likes games, but she also likes
Spelling Power she likes me to read chapters from a history text
and ask her the chapter review questions. My kids have always
been unschooled, so I know they don't feel the need to learn to
please me, they do so to satisfy their own curiosities. I just supply
them with resources, help when needed and lots and lots of free
time to pursue those things. There is a dangerous temptation in
these young ones who excel in the academic world early to give
them workbooks and put the real learning on the back burner. I've
found through research and experience that cooking, sewing,
buying, selling, farming, building, playing and other everyday real
life events are to be the bulk of the child's experiences and the
bookwork can be a supplement if the child chooses for that to be
the method they use to satisfy their curiosity (which sounds like
your son). Some excellent books on the subject are "School Can
Wait" and "Better Late Than Early" by Dr. Raymond Moore, "How
Children Learn" and "Learning All the Time" by John Holt, and any
of the audio seminars from Carole Joy Seid (
They've helped me and given me great ideas for how to unschool a
academic oriented child.

I am so sorry to ramble on - I didn't mean to write this much! I
would love to know what a day looks like in other unschooler's
homes and how they deal with a routine.
- Heidi

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