Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Homeschooling Around Activities

We had a pretty relaxed laid back kind of day today.  We usually do on the days the boys have karate lessons.


It's not always easy balancing schoolwork and activities but we try our best.  

Usually on days with activities we:
  • Plan to cover a little less (just math and reading)
  • Look for other ways to cover school topics (usually the activity encompasses a few subjects on it's own). 
  • Double up on schoolwork the day before or the day after
  • Accept the fact that not everything is going to get done.  
  • Use whatever extra time you have wisely
  • Be flexible
  • Break up lessons into smaller lessons so that they can be covered at different times of the day that work with your schedule.    
  • Try to double up on lessons-- reading word problems for math?? Count that as both math and reading for the day.  Reading about life in Ancient Egypt and how they mummified mummies?? Well that can count as math, history, science, and geography! 


We settled at the table to get some school work done before leaving:

Evan read the book Swing, Sloth! to me and then he went through the Dolch sight words lists with his highlighter.  When he was done we compared these lists to last months and he declared "wow! I really am learning even though I don't realize it!"

Ian worked on a page in his spelling book reinforcing the rule to take off the y and add -ies and then started on his math.

Alec was busy taking care of his fish and we worked together to re-fill his bird feeder.  He had slept in (until I woke him) and didn't have much time to eat and get dressed.

At Karate:
Alec was thrilled to be working with nunchucks today.  We arrived at class a bit early and I walked in to find him hard at work practicing.  They had a great, fun class today filled with games.  The boys enjoyed it a lot but I think Alec was most interested in discovering that he can work with the nunchucks (or anything else he wants to) before class every week.  It was great seeing them all so happy and content. I do consider karate as part of our school day.  They learn so much.  Everything from foreign language, culture, and physical education to teamwork, socialization, and discipline.


After class:
We swung by the library and picked up a whole box of books and movies that were waiting for us.

We try to swing by the library every week on our way home from class.  On our way there Alec had been asking me questions about growing oak trees from acorns.  I didn't know all the answers so he used my phone to look up information on Google.  I offered to help him find a book or two at the library on growing trees.

While the librarian worked her way through our stack, checking them all out I helped Alec find a good book.  He ended up reading the whole thing while we were there.  As he was putting the book back, he discovered that the new Spirit Animals book came in and he was off and reading in no time.  By lunch he had already read the first 6 chapters!

Back at Home:          
Evan and Ian wanted to finish their schoolwork before lunch so we did.

Ian finished up his second math page and then read two quick books; This Book Just Ate my Dog! & The Busy Tree.

Evan, meanwhile worked on two math pages dealing with fact families.  He caught on immediately to the concept and finished up the pages in no time.  He then completed a page in his Star Wars reading book.  With both of them done school they were finally ready to eat lunch.

Free Time and Finishing Up Work:
I read the next chapter in Harry Potter during lunch and then Ian and Evan went to go play while I sat with Alec and encouraged him to get some schoolwork done.

Alec really just wanted to go back and read his Spirit Animal book but I persuaded him to complete two pages in his math workbook dealing with place value to the millions.

I also asked him to decide between working with his new spelling words or completing a reading comprehension assignment out of this book.

Alec chose to work on the comprehension page since it was all about animals and he just loves reading & learning about animals.  He did a great job, even if it was at a 5th grade level.  I wasn't surprised since he's such an avid reader.

With his schoolwork done Alec ended up reading another book-- My Cat Isis.  I had ordered this book for him when we discovered it was not available through our library.  The book had just come in the mail when Alec was finishing up school and he could not resist reading it.

Alec wanted to play the Spirit Animal game on Scholastic's website.  He settled down on the couch with my computer and loaded up the game.  After watching Alec play for a while, Evan asked me if I could get the desktop unit up and running so he could play too.

Ian ended up wandering upstairs to watch a movie in his room while Alec and Evan continued to play Spirit Animals together.  It was a pretty quiet and a very relaxing day for us all; and that's just how we like it!


Linking Up With: 
Tots and Me

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