Sunday, August 19, 2012

What Does the First Day of Homeschool Look Like?


Perhaps the better question is – is there really a first day of homeschool?

Apparently, the Fisher Price family sends their children to school, except it looks like Mama's still in bed.

Sometimes there doesn’t seem to be. We try to make every day a learning day. And, since our children don’t like the 90-degree days of summer, we’re planning on schooling through the year with longer breaks in the fall and winter. This means more snow days – when it’s really worth it to go outside! This also means that our First Day will be the day when we start the next grade’s curriculum.

Just like what I remember of public school, we don’t get a lot of actual school work done on the first day. We just get acclimated to the materials and the schedule.

Despite what some think of homeschoolers J, we all actually get dressed, fix our hair, and brush our teeth.

The seventh grader and the 18-month-old. (I never said we put on shoes!)

We also take the First Day of School Picture.

We officially start the day with prayer for the school year and each student individually.

The children get their binders organized, using sleeve protectors as subject dividers. (Yes, more binders!) We print on an 8 ½ x 11 sheet of paper the subject, and then the children get to draw and color whatever they want on the rest of the paper.

The fifth grader.

Is this better?

We also create new binder covers with each child’s name, grade, and school year. They choose the font, color, and size. This gives them an opportunity to play around a bit with Word and experiment.

The fourth grader. (But he wants to catch up with his sister, so he'll probably be fifth grade by the end of the year.)

Eventually each will move to completing school work on their own computer (perhaps the oldest by next year – when typing skills have improved), but for now, binders work for us. Throughout the morning, they become familiar with their texts as well as the location of the lesson plans and how to read them. They write their names and the school year on the inside cover of the consumable worktexts. Together, we go over the schedule, detailing what work they should get done in between what hours.

We round out our day with a special First Day of School lunch, something like English muffin pizzas that they make themselves.

Forget the apple for the teacher. She wants another cup of cappuccino!









What do you do for your first day of school? Did it go as planned this year?




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26 comments:

  1. Love THIS GLIMPSE INTO YOUR HOMESCHOOLING. NO SHOES REQUIRED HERE EITHER:)

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    1. Of course, we put them on when we go out . . . sometimes! :) Thanks, Tesha!

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  2. Bring on the cappucchino:) Sweet kids! We haven't started back yet, but our first day will be a lot the same.

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    1. Cappuccino lovers unite! Thanks for commenting, Sarah, and blessings on your first day.

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  3. Our first day begins today! My girls have a morning routine like getting dressed (yes complete with teeth and hair, LOL) making their bed, and eating breakfast before meeting for family Bible time. Of course, we don't have a shoe policy here either. :) This first week we will be hitting the floor running. We will see how quickly we will be able to fall into routine. I am pretty flexible at the beginning until we get some of the kinks out. :) Hope you have a fantastic week!

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    1. Next Monday in the iHomeschool Network blog hop is A Day in the Life -- schedules, routines, etc. I'm not sure how I'm going to write that one because it usually takes us a few weeks to work out the kinks. Flexibility is a must! Thanks, Leah!

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  4. First day for us, too! I do a Mommy date with each one prior to school starting where they pick out their favorite restaurant, an outfit and their school supplies. This is a fun tradition for all of us. This morning started out with getting dressed, making their beds, then starting their DVD programs. We try to do a special brunch(pancakes today per their request)with extra prayers for a good school year. A family "ice cream outing"(or sometimes "homemade" ice cream) on the first evening is also a tradition. I love the feeling of starting over! I trust you guys will have an awesome school year. I am going to try to remember to pray for my homeschooling Mom friends. Hope you will for me as well. :)

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    1. Ronda, I LOVE your First Day Special Homemade Pancake Breakfast. Your children will remember that for the rest of their lives. I hadn't thought of an evening tradition. That's a good idea -- we'll have to come up with something. And I definitely agree that we homeschooling moms need to pray for each other! Thanks for sharing the great ideas.

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  5. hehe I have been noticing a lot of people's first day of school pictures are shoeless! I personally love to be barefoot and think that it is a total benefit of homeschooling! :-) Your kiddos are adorable!

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    1. Total bonus to homeschooling -- no shoes! (Just don't ask for pajama pictures...) Thanks, Lindsay, and blessings on your homeschool.

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  6. Meghan,
    Your first picture reminded me of when we opened our school year with a Bible lesson on Joshua and the Battle of Jericho. I decided to let my then 3-year old play quietly on the floor w/ her counting bears and Lincoln Logs while I read the story with her older sister. By the end of the story I looked down and she had built Jericho and had her counting bears marching in a circle around it. Never again did I wonder if she "got it" during Bible lessons :) Visiting from Be Not Weary and glad I did :)

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    1. How cute! Yes, they really do listen, don't they? Thanks, Lori, for stopping by again.

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  7. We start up next week with Preschool. We almost never wear shoes in the house but when I do, I usually get tired of them and kick them off in odd places so its best just to remain barefoot! Cute pictures of the children!

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    1. Thanks, Shari! Preschool is a great time -- have fun! Blessings on your school year.

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  8. I love your pics...so cute!!
    We plan on starting next week. We just spent five days in the hospital with my 14 yr old son...emergency appendectomy and five days of antibiotics through the IV. So I am not completely prepared like I should be. But I am trusting God's timing on this, and figuring we'll get going and see how things go, then make changes where needed.
    Thanks for being my newest blog follower! Appreciated your comment too!

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    1. I'd say you have plenty of reason not to be prepared. And you're right, God has it all in His hands. The beginning of the school year is usually just review and getting organized anyway. So glad everything worked out all right for his emergency surgery. We'll be praying, Dawn.

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  9. I have everyone get dressed and brush teeth before starting our day too:) Shoes optional in our house too:) We also home school year round and take more breaks to travel when the urge strikes. Love taking a peek into your home school. thanks for linking up on the NOBH

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    1. We're all loving the idea of school year-round so that our breaks can be more flexible. Isn't it interesting how we approach this homeschooling thing with preconceived notions of what is right and what is wrong? I wish I'd been this relaxed at the beginning. Thanks so much for commenting!

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  10. This post made me smile. We are starting in 2 weeks. And the coffee part cracked me up! So very true. God Bless you all! :)

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, and I love your profile name! So true for me as well!

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  11. Shoes are optional here as well and a lot of the time you can find my daughter in her jammie pants. We don't start up here for another week or so. Still waiting on curriculum. However next week we are starting with some math apps on my iPad.
    The first official day of school of course is the school picture and then pancake breakfast. Last year I spelled her name and made a heart of the pancake batter which she loved so will try and do it again this year.
    This is only my second year of homeschooling. Up till now all my kids were public schooled. However I am LOVING the homeschooling. Love the flexibility and the ability to teach her how she learns best.

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    1. You are a pancake artist! Sounds like a special time, and I'm so glad you are enjoying homeschooling. Thanks for stopping by to leave a comment, Sherri!

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  12. Meghan...I love this post! Makes me excited for our new school year which we begin in September. And like you, shoes are not a requirement. Hahaha! Thank you for sharing this at WJIM this week.

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    1. Thanks so much, Naomi. Thanks for the link-up, and blessings on your school this year!

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  13. I've enjoyed reading about all the first day traditions! I hope to find some to use with my family when we start homeschooling.

    Thanks for linking up with WIP Wednesday!

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    1. I pray your homeschool will be a joy and a blessing, Mary Beth! Thanks, as always, for the link-up.

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