Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Afternoon Schedule...

I figured out right when school started that we needed a PLAN when the kids got home from school.  Snack was hurriedly were running in and out of my house...there was no homework even thought about...

So, Week 2 went a lot differently than Week 1.  On Monday I sat the kids down and told them of the new plan.  It is going well.  Here it is...

-Go pick up Betsy.

-Get home with about 10 minutes to spare before the bus comes.  We run in for her to go potty and us both to grab a Pop-Ice and we head out and wait for the bus.

-We grab mail and head inside.

-I make the kids a snack (They get one "healthy treat" and one "sweet treat"...Examples: an apple and a Reese's cup, applesauce and a cookie, watermelon and a Pop-Ice.)

-While they eat their snack I go through the mail (new folder system will be in place soon!), fold clothes that I had moved to the dryer at lunch, and empty the dishwasher (if I had started it that morning).  For some reason I have found that if I am sitting at the table grilling them about their day they give me blank stares...but if I mull around the kitchen working on these chores then they will talk and talk, so that's what I do!

-After snack we head upstairs (if it is Monday, we do Manners Mondays now), then they each sit at their desk and do their homework or a "lesson".  I use the Summer Bridge workbooks (Thanks Sarah!) and the Kumon workbooks.  I also have several dry-erase books that I have gotten at consignment sales that I like to use for handwriting practice.

This takes about 30 minutes and it identifies areas we need to work on.  Below is an example.  After Jay did this math lesson I could see that Jay needs practice with his 5.  With a large class, this may not be picked up at school...but one on one we worked through it.  We practiced writing "5" on a writing board" throughout the week to reinforce the correct way the 5 goes.

We also work on things that the teacher mentions in the Wednesday newsletter that comes home.  For example last week she mentioned that some kids were writing their names in all caps and she was teaching the name to be in Cap and Lowercase.  I knew Jay was writing his name in all caps, so that day we worked on how he should write his name going forward.  We also work on the teacher's "words of the week" and talk about their meanings.

(I had school year lessons...and summer lessons...growing up.  I hated them and despised how my friends got to run out immediately and play while I couldn't play 'till I was finished.  Even though I hated them then, I appreciate them now!...Right now my kids really like them.  I bet that will change in a few years, but I'm hoping that once this "lesson time" is set...they will be used to it when "real" homework rolls in.) 

-After the "lesson" we read books together or listen to a Joy School song/story.  (Also about 30 minutes.)

-At 4:00 it is FUN TIME!  I've decided that at their current age every day can't be play-outside-with-friends-day, so on Monday/Wednesday/Friday they head out with friends.  On Tuesday/Thursday they play at home (TV show, free play with babies/Legos/dress-up clothes/doll-house, walk, backyard porch time with paints, etc.) or (after I gauge tired levels) we may go on an outing to the library, pool, park or zoo.

-At 5:30 it's time to be back inside before Daddy gets home.  They have 15 minutes of timed (sound familiar?) room clean up.

-They wind down before supper with a TV show, currently Flipper is always picked, while JB and I talk/cook dinner together.


Missy Talbert said...

Wow, I totally feel like a slacker mom -- if we play with puzzles or read books, I consider "school time" completed! I guess when J gets older...
I love your ideas though. Totally inspired to translate this into 2-yr-old appropriate activities!

The 1st of May said...

The Kumon books are GREAT for littles and Betsy thinks they are "FUN!"

Even though I rambled, the "school" part is just 30 minutes. I have to admit that most of what they have learned has been at M. School. I just apply/tweak it some with the workbooks to see what they know/don't know.

Brantley said...

Yall really pack a lot into an afternoon! I don't mind letting my boys play outside every day, especially now that its not blazing hot...I know before long it won't be an option because it will be getting dark earlier!

Johanna V. said...

Amazing, Sally. Such a great schedule. Love that picture of B's dolls all lined up and covered up.