This is my first year with three “students” – but I already started incorporating dd#3 in January for her Kindergarten materials, so it isn’t too much of a stretch. When I start adding the more time-consuming and rigorous first grade materials after the first of the year (2012), I might panic. It never seems like I have enough “me” to go around or enough time in the day. It has helped that dd#1 has become a little more independent. She will certainly have to be more independent this year, with the goal of her doing much of her studies in a self-directed way next school year.
At 8:30, while everyone finishes their chores, dd#3 & I do her phonics and handwriting.
When finished, she is released to go have some fun on her own (which she does responsibly).
At 9, DD#1 & DD#2 join me for their math. I am “at elbow” for teaching (primarily for #2) or answering questions (both kids). As long as they work steadily through for 45 minutes, they have no homework in this subject. If they goof off, they have the rest of their lesson to complete on their own time.
They transition to working on their individual grammar workbooks for about 15 minutes and then work through Latin together for 30 minutes.
The smaller kids play with different toys in the “school area” during this time. The youngest usually goes down for a nap around 10:30. We all have a break then and the four olders get a snack while I start on lunch.
After snacks, the two older kids work together for 30 minutes on their religion schoolwork.
DD#2 is then released for the morning and DD#1 starts on her writing lesson. Once she is on the right track, DD#3 joins me for some math for about 15 minutes. Then, I finish getting lunch ready.
After lunch & cleanup, DD#1 works for 30 minutes independently on Spanish while I listen to DD#2 read aloud.
At around 1:30, the older two do between 1-4 sentences of dictation for a maximum of 15 minutes. Then, we start our History or Science studies, depending on the day. Both consist of some reading aloud, doing hands-on activities, writing, map work, drawing, coloring, and listening to music.
After the formal “school” stuff is over, dd#3 and I spend some time on a fun activity of her choosing – cooking, sewing, dress-up, crafts, me reading aloud, poetry, or drama (puppet show?).
Older DS has a lot of puzzles, Legos, blocks, and “tools” to play with during this time. He has “fun” workbooks that he can do anytime he likes. He has access to craft materials, Play-Doh, and other mess-making supplies right in our school area. The younger one so far spends some of this time in my lap or sitting on a chair scribbling nearby. He can also play with the blocks, trucks, and tools. The biggest on-going challenge for me is to keep an eye on them and make time to teach them to clean up after themselves before moving onto making bigger & better messes!