Monday, May 23, 2011

Mommy School

Summer vacation has officially begun at our house. Which is insane because it's still raining like we live in Seattle and may never see the proverbial sunshine of summer.
This is why I decided it was critical that I come up with a plan. I love my children dearly, but they all function better when they have routine, structure, etc. So do I.
And so.
Introducing Mommy School! A great place to learn, play, and have positive interaction with one another for at least 15 minutes a day. Woot!
I'm going to share what I've created as our daily schedule, including my Mommy School schedule to give you an idea. I'm really excited about this, and today when we tried it for the first time it worked great.

7-8:30  Breakfast, Get Dressed, Do Hair, Brush Teeth, Make Bed
8:30-9:30  Mommy School
9:30-10   Daily Jobs
10   Snack/Free Time
11:30 Clean up messes
12:00 Lunch
1:00 Nap for the Little Miss, Quiet time for Big Girls
3:00 Snack/Free Time
5:30 Clean up messes
6:00 Dinner
8:00 In Bed

Okay, I know this is pretty much the most basic routine in the world, but I printed off the schedule and showed it to my girls and they were like "Woo hoo! We get Free Time twice a day!" So maybe there's something good about them knowing they have the power to make their own choices. Even though that's what I let them do anyway.
Another thing. Clean up messes-- that's something I've tried to get them to do every day of my life. But tonight, at 5:30  I just said, "Look at the schedule. It's time for you to clean up your messes while I finish dinner." And up the stairs they trotted to clean their room which was a certified disaster area. Nary a complaint from them.
I know the joy won't last forever, but I'm going to ride this pony as far as I can take it.

Now, on to Mommy School. This is the routine for that:
Article of Faith (we're trying to memorize them)
Journal (I give them a blank paper and ask them to draw a picture of something I make up. Like today was titled "Summer Fun" and my little girl drew a picture of herself on her bike. And my other little girl drew a picture of our family "going for a stroll."
Sight Words/Reading Time  My kids are still little enough that they need to practice handwriting skills. So, I found this list of sight words based on grade level and we're going to work on them each week. I chose six words for each of them from the list, wrote them on little cards, and had the girls copy them onto paper. That way they are reading the words and practicing writing them as well. I have one girl copy her words while the other girl reads aloud to me. Then we switch.
Activity   This is the fun time. Today we wrote letters/drew pictures for friends that live far away. Other activities might include painting, playdoh, playing a game, doing a puzzle, Duck Duck Goose, London Bridges, building forts, etc. I feel like I don't always invest enough time into playing with my kids, so hopefully this will help me to be motivated to do that.
I also found this site for math worksheets for early grades and we'll probably throw a couple of those in each week as well.

What are you doing with your kids this summer? Any fun ideas? Please share!!

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