I’ve been reading a lot of fascinating blog posts from other moms on how a typical day goes at their house. I think it’s fun to see how other people do things. So for your perusal I offer what happened at our house this Wednesday. It’s fairly typical of our life and the type of preschool we do, plus you’ll find out the answer to the popular question “When do you find time to read?” I had fun with this post; most nights I fall into bed feeling like I didn’t get anything done, but writing down everything I actually do in a day is like a BIG Have Done List (you should try it!).
6:00 I got up, did my Bible reading and prayer time while eating a yogurt, then exercised (I’m doing the Insanity workout now and it’s…insane. I’ll review it in the future.)
7:15 I’m trying to train the children to stay in their rooms quietly until I come to get them at 7:30. Ideally they would sleep until then so they get enough rest but on the morning in questions they were already up and singing “This is the day that the Lord has made” to each other. At least they were not being unruly up there. I drank a cup of coffee and read the Wall Street Journal on my phone.
7:30 I took a cup of coffee to my husband because he’s not a morning person and then I got the kids. I made them breakfast, unloaded the dishwasher, made Josh’s breakfast smoothie and packed his lunch. The kids played outside after they finished their breakfast. Yes, they were still in their pajamas but whatever. I cleaned up the kitchen and got out some chicken to defrost for dinner.
8:30 Josh left for work. I was finally done in the kitchen and the kids were still playing happily so I had another cup of coffee and checked my email and blog reader via my phone (I don’t turn on the big computer until naptime – having the phone available is temptation enough!).
8:45 The kids came in and played in the playroom while I took a lightening fast shower and got dressed, then I got them dressed, we made the beds, and we picked up the playroom toys.
9:30 Recitation. Ephesians 2:8-10 (our current memory verse), Colossians 3:23-24 (the verse they are memorizing for soccer), the books of the New Testament song, three review verses (these rotate so we don’t forget them). Our current poem is “Rain” by Robert Louis Stevenson and both Hannah and Jack know it well. We reviewed two other poems, “Goops” and Emily Dickinson’s “He ate and drank the precious words”. Finally we recited the days of the week and counted 1-30 and then we sang “Joyful, joyful we adore Thee”. It sounds like a lot but it goes fast.
9:40 I read to the children with Sarah and Jack sharing my lap and Hannah sitting next to me (subject covered in parentheses):
- The Jesus Storybook Bible: story of Noah (Bible)
- Big Thoughts for Little People: one section (Bible)
- The Glorious Mother Goose: 20 pages. We read a chunk of a poetry book or nursery rhyme book every day. (Literature – Poetry)
- The Aesop for Children: “The Crab and His Mother” (Literature: Fables and Folk Tales – I’ll do a post of what books we use for this topic in the near future, I promise)
- Jump on Over!r: “Why Brer Wolf Didn’t Eat the Little Rabs”. We have to talk a lot after a Brer Rabbit story, because a lot of the action is stuff you DON’T want to emulate so we discuss that. (Literature: Fables and Folk Tales)
- My Monet Art Museum. Monet is our artist for the month so we read books about him and his work, notice what things are typical of his paintings, and learn the names of famous paintings. (Art)
- Charming Opal, Owl Babies, George Shrinks, Harold and the Purple Crayon(Literature: Picture Books)
- Math Appeal – we did some counting and sorting and categorizing for one set of pages (Math)
10:00 I put on a Bach CD of the Brandenburg Concertos (Bach is our composer for this month – we listen to his music and read books about him – I’ll do a post in the future on how we’re handling composer and artist study this year), gave Hannah one page of letters to copy for handwriting, gave Jack a page with his name printed on it twice in vain hope that he will trace it, but actually he just flipped the paper over and drew a picture of his daddy. After Hannah practiced her handwriting for about 5 minutes she drew some stuff too. Then they all played Legos. Meanwhile, I got the ironing done while taking frequent breaks to help them, started a load of laundry and made the snack.
11:00 Snack. A little late today. But no one starved.
11:30 Hannah collected some seeds on our walk yesterday so for science we read about seeds and plants and talked about how seeds grow:
Then for geography we looked at our map of the United States and found our state. We got out our big floor puzzle of the map of the world and put it together, then found our continent, country, and state. We also found France because we were planning to read books about France for the culture/history part of our day.
After we found France and talked about how long it would take to get there by various means of conveyance, we read books about France or that take place in France, and talked about how you can tell if a book is set in France (pictures of the Eiffel Tower or Notre Dame, etc)
- This is Paris– great book to learn the major landmarks of a city. There are others in the series.
- Adele & Simon
- Mirette on the High Wire
- Anatole and the Cat
12:10 The kids rode their bikes in the cul-de-sac. I sat on the front step and read my book while also breaking up disputes and watching for cars.
1:30 Listened to Bach again and had quiet play time. Hannah did her reading lesson (After nearly finishing Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons I realized that Hannah could read but didn’t have a great grasp on lots of phonics rules, so I switched to The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading and we’re reviewing all the phonics rules. It’s good practice for her.) and then Jack did his reading lesson (He’s getting one lesson per week from the Ordinary Parent’s Guide, so this week he’s learning the sound for E. He knows the letter sounds but he’s not ready to read yet, so giving him a “lesson” makes him feel included.) Then we had cleanup time.
2:00 Rest time. They don’t have to sleep, but they have to be quiet and look at books or something if they aren’t sleeping. I wrote a blog post, sent some emails, tried to figure out some scheduling stuff for our church nursery, worked on the second draft of my novel, and enjoyed the quiet.
4:00 Snack time. We had popcorn popped on the stove, and that takes forever because the kids nibble each piece. Usually they play outside after snack, but the “Chemical Stranger Man” (what Jack calls the TruGreen lawn care guy) came mid-morning and sprayed some fertilizer so I didn’t let the kids in the backyard. Kids played inside.
5:00 Afternoon walk – I pushed the double stroller 2.5 miles around the neighborhood, Hannah walked most of the way, Jack walked part of the way. The kids kept an eye out for something interesting to put in their nature notebook and found a butterfly that we think is a Monarch. We will have to pull out butterfly books for science tomorrow. Towards the end of our walk we stopped at the neighborhood playground, but didn’t stay long because some big kids were there hogging all the equipment. While walking we talked about our current habit/character trait that we’re working on: prompt obedience. We worked on it last year but things got lax this summer. We also went over the first 27 questions of the children’s catechism. The last six of those are new and the kids don’t know them yet, so we repeated them twice.
6:00 The kids played in the living room using laundry baskets to pretend to be sea turtles. The laundry baskets were empty because the dryer had run SIX times without drying the clothes. I made a mental note to share this terrible fact with my husband when he got home. Meanwhile, since I had no laundry to fold (bummer!) I read a book and started dinner. Yes, I can cook one handed while reading.
6:45 Josh came home from the gym but still had to do his weights and take a shower, so I gave the kids their baths. Then we cleaned up the playroom while listening to the rest of the Brandenburg Concertos.
7:30 We ate dinner and talked about our day. Then we cleaned up the kitchen and got the kids ready for bed. Usually we read another story before bed but I was too tired, so we did the short version of the bedtime routine: sing the Gloria Patri, everyone says a prayer, hugs and kisses.
8:15 Kids in bed. I further tried to figure out the church nursery schedule and remembered that I am abysmal at details and not gifted in the administrative arts. Hopefully I will not ruin the nursery program. Then I got an idea for changing a character’s name in my novel draft, and spent too long researching Scotch-Irish immigration to the Carolinas in the 1700s.
10:00 I needed to go to bed, but I was freezing and my muscles hurt like billy-oh from doing the Insanity workouts so I took a bath and read my book.
10:30 Talked to my husband for a little while, then went to bed and lay awake thinking of the various and sundry things I need to do and pondering if I have to declare Swagbucks on my taxes and trying to remember the name of that delicious vegetable salad we used to eat in Germany…
11:30 Finally fell asleep.