A wife of noble character who can find?...She speaks with wisdom and faithful instruction is on her tongue...Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her. Proverbs 31:10, 26 & 28

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Homeschooling While Pregnant

I don't often blog about our homeschooling life, let me correct that, lately I haven't been blogging much at all! I often wonder how other families do it. Sometimes it's so hard to fit schooling in with just life in general, especially a large family. The logistics of running a household sometimes leave little time for anything else except taking a well earned break. Since starting our homeschooling journey I've had 2 babies and am about to have another, which will mean eight children in our family, and one thing I've learned is that there is no correct way to go about it, it's what works for you and your family.

So what do we do when I'm pregnant? We relax. I don't know that I actually plan the 12 months out (9mths of being pregnant and the first few months with a new bub) but at the very beginning, when I'm really sick, I only really insist on the basics: maths and reading. Of course they're learning all the time and there are a lot of home duties in the older kid's day so it's not like they're playing games, computer or watching TV all day. Then when I'm feeling a bit better and have more energy we add more subjects to their week. Towards the end of the pregnancy we tend to get even more involved in book work, knowing that once the baby is here we'll probably relax our homeschooling routine again for a few months.

What are we doing right now? I'm about 36 weeks pregnant now and have been in this house for a month and a half. We've also just started a new school term at the beginning of last week. It's the perfect time to re-evaluate what we're doing in our homeschooling. Earlier on in the year I made a Routine Chart for the family which included time allotted for school work, chores and breaks. I've made a few adjustments over the course of time but it is still working for us.

8:30am Have breakfast, showers, dressed, washing on
9:00am Morning Jobs
9:30am 1st Subject
10:30am Clean loungeroom
10:45am Have morning tea
11:00am 2nd Subject
12:00pm LUNCH
1:00pm Clean family room
Second load of washing
1:30pm Lunch jobs
1:45pm 3rd Subject
2:45pm 4th Subject
3:30pm Clean room for 5 mins

This is by no means a strict routine. I would probably have a breakdown if I felt I had to stick to it like glue. But it's a great guide and I find that having this poster up on the wall for the kids to see, rather than a laminated piece of paper that I used to have, gets them more involved.

On the chart it says 4 subjects during the course of the day but in reality they only do 3 as each of the 3 older children take a turn at occupying the little children to allow the older children to study in relative peace. They have large blocks of subjects as this chart is for the older children who are aged 11, 13 and 14 years. I would not expect the younger ones to sit still at a subject for this length of time when they start their formal learning. I also didn't mention that we only do school work 4 days a week. Our eldest son is studying at TAFE and has been having one day a week off so we make that our day off too. It gives us time to just chill but also to get things like folding up and intense cleaning of rooms done.

For their jobs I used to have a roster system but found that it wasn't really working for us so now they have their set chores that they do day in and day out. That doesn't mean they do them without me telling them,though (I wish).

Well that's how we homeschool while I'm pregnant and maybe by the next post we'll have our new precious little one.


Bec - Farmers Wife said...

Thanks for your post. Our youngest DD will be starting high school next year but we will be doing distance education as it is too far to travel.

In particualar I like what you have done with the routine. Getting school work done but still managing the house :)

Clare said...

Ah! You are so more organised than me lol
We are the same, 3rd since starting home ed. What a crazy few years for us, but I am sure it would be like that even if the kids were in school.
A full life we both have hey :)

We have a rhythm of the day, it tends to flow similar each day. I am going much slower as we count down to baby :)

Hope you have settled in to the new house. So exciting not long to the new family meber joining you!
Take care

Becca said...

More organised, Clare? I think not! Your pile of folding up has nothing on mine. :)

Tim suggested threatening the kids with going to school but I said that would have more of a negative impact on me than them. I think that's what got me through the first few year of homeschooling. I love not making the school run anymore.