Summer Survival at Our House

I usually take June completely off from scheduled school work. We all neeeeed the break by that point. We also have multiple birthdays, our anniversary, and an annual camping trip in the Oregon high desert mid-month. June ends up being plenty busy even without school work.  However, for my sanity and theirs, I still require a few things and I heavily limit media time.  For those of you who like details about other people's schedules (I sure do!), this post is for you!

Apparently the kids were so moved by their poetry recitation that they had to do back-bends.

On the days we don't have somewhere to be (like tennis or swim lessons), we continue starting our day with Morning Time. (Morning time includes talking about the day's schedule, bible reading, prayer, poetry, read aloud and sometimes more. More on that later.) We start at nine during the school year, but move the meeting to ten for our summer hours. This is especially nice down here in California because the kids end up staying up late to play outside as the evening cools down, and then sleep in later in the morning. On days we have lessons or other fun plans, we fit the morning meeting in wherever there's space in the day.

Additionally, I ask for two hours of reading from Ava and Allie, and one from Wyatt. This isn't too much of a hassle since they all love to read. I insert some of my own selections into their reading time. For example, Allie is preparing for Classical Conversations' Challenge program by reading the books from the level before Challenge A, and at least some of the books she will be starting in the fall. (I am also trying to get through this list for myself.)

I generally just tell them what I'm hoping they will do and then leave the books lying around and the younger ones gobble them up due to their curious natures and their love of reading. I've been choosing stories for Ava and Wyatt long enough now that they know I can be trusted to choose good books, so that helps too. I attempt the same strategy with Allie, and it sometimes works. If I get resistance, I start setting boundaries, such as, "sure, you can go to Georgia's house - right after you finish three chapters of The Hiding Place." This usually works for us.

For Allie, I'm also requiring a certain amount of exercise daily. The younger ones get their exercise by just being kids, so all I have to do is make sure they have enough free time to play. Allie is more reluctant, so I ask for her exercise to be done before the bulk of her media time. Her "workouts" usually come in the form of riding her bike to and from the DollarTree or going for a walk with me or, in desperate times, dragging herself up and down the stairs for fifteen minutes. This last one is my favorite because of the torture-esque sound effects that accompany the stair climbing.

So that's June.  In July and August (with our Sabbath week falling right before Classical Conversations starts up again) we will continue with our ten o'clock morning time. Summer school for the younger students includes tennis, swimming and a few horseback riding lessons, daily math and reading, CC memory work review, and lots of nature study (including gardening) and fine arts. Allie is finishing up some credits, so she will be working on that in addition to her reading list.  And our high school book discussion group will continue throughout the summer as people are available.  Of course, all of this may be thrown out the window at a moment's notice for impromptu summer fun.  That's one of my favorite things about homeschooling - weaving school and seasons and life all together.


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