Wednesday, July 19, 2017

A Day In The Life Of A Homeschooling Family, Summer Edition :: The Long Family

:: Tell us a little about yourself and your family, as well as how long you have been homeschooling.

We are a family of 5. Matt and I have been married for 10 years. He is an IT guy working on becoming a full time pilot, and I am a health and fitness coach. Abbey is 8, Owen is 3 and Finn is almost 9 months old (make it stop!). We began homeschooling when Abbey was 4. We had her in a preschool that we loved, but for a few reasons it wasn't going to work to have her there for her 4K year and I wasn't so committed to the plan that I felt the need to find her a different school so we started early. Owen attends that same preschool now, and we are back to that same plan with him, starting at home in K. 

:: Do you take the Summer off from homeschooling, or do you continue year round?  If you continue, do you do things any differently? 

We lighten up in the summer. In order to get screen time for the day, part of Abbey's to-do list is one math lesson and one other subject of her choice. At some point in the week she has to do language arts, science, history, states, or something from a workbook of her choice. This way we are still keeping things fresh, but not putting so much into our day that we feel like we can't enjoy the summer. 

:: What are some of your favorite Summer activities to do with your children?

We love being at the pool, and neighborhood parks. We spend quite a bit of time with friends and family up in Michigan in the summer. My kids are homebodies, and I at least try to get Finn a decent nap at home every day. I think we find a good balance between routine and adventures.

:: Do you have a favorite Chicagoland spot for Summer fun?

We love Brookfield Zoo. Cosley Zoo is a great option if you want a quick visit, especially with little ones. We also love Maggie Daley Park downtown. It's not unusual for us to pack up a picnic and head down there for the day.

:: Do you have a special way of storing and organizing your homeschool at the end of the year? 

Hahahahahahahahahaha! Oh wait, that's a serious question? Since we go year round, we don't really have an end of the year. Abbey works at her own pace, and when we finish one book we simply move onto the next, whether that is in February or June. We do use a workbox system, so each subject has a drawer. Whether or not things are actually in the drawer is a day to day situation, but at least there is a general rule. It also allows Abbey to work independently when her curriculum allows. 

:: As you reflect on the past school year what is something that you felt was a success, and what was something that you would like to change for the coming year.

With a new baby this was a year of transitions and learning new routines. Between Finn being born in early October and the holidays we didn't really find our focus until late January. We aren't the "3 hours at the table" kind of homeschool family, but I would like to have a much stronger routine next year. I am happy with the progress we made this year, though. We also learned that we can roll with changes pretty well, and learned what works for us in busy seasons. That was eye opening, and settled some worries for me.

Thank you for sharing with us Heather!


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