I originally thought we would start back up with A Gentle Feast the first week of August, but we’re going to hold off another month.
I knew we couldn’t take any more time for a summer break, so I put together a Charlotte Mason “curriculum” for the next four weeks using the resources I already had on hand.
I also wanted to keep the same schedule that we used last year, hoping to have an easier transition for when we get back to our regular lessons. Let’s just call this a “soft start” to the school year since we won’t be including history, natural history or geog until September .
To see just a list of our resources with links, scroll to the very bottom of this post.
While planning, I make sure to keep the lessons short and varied while focusing on living books and narration. I also make sure there’s plenty of time for outdoor play and personal interests.
The first thing I do is choose a time period for us to focus on. I knew we would be studying the Civil War era with AGF for history this year, and decided to stick to the same-ish time frame for our August morning bakset.
A friend of mine introduced me to coreknowledge.org which is a free curriculum resource for history, geography, language arts and geography. It might be a helpful starting point if you’ve decided to create your own curriculum from scratch.
With a time period chosen, now I’m able to plan our morning basket. I want to make sure we can align as many subjects as we can with the Civil War era. This also means that there’s a possibility for our artist/composer study, hymns, poetry, folk songs and even fables to coincide with the same time period I’ve chosen.
The website soClassiQ has a wonderful timeline of classical composers that span a period of 10 centuries. I chose Scott Joplin for the month of August, though I didn’t see him listed in the timeline (maybe I missed it).
Below is a screenshot of our August morning basket schedule. Remember that not everything will be done on the same day, but instead looped throughout the week.
Although not written down in my morning time schedule, copywork/writing practice seems to fit in best first thing in the morning when my kids can write while I read. This works especially well for my oldest who isn’t fond of writing, but tolerates it if he’s fresh and has a light snack to help him along.
My preschoolers get coloring pages during morning basket and my kindergartner has a handwriting notebook if she feels so inclined to use it.
I’m always amazed at how much we are able to accomplish first thing in the mornings. My kids truly retain so much of what we’ve read together.
With morning basket completed, we take a break for breakfast and morning chores. Afterwards, my kids take turns with me at the table for one-on-one main lesson block of language arts and math. During this time they get plenty of free time to play outside while they’re waiting on their turn.
We then break for lunch and by mid day my kids are pretty tuckered out, which seems to be a good time to loop through lessons such as geography, nature study, handicrafts, art, and teatime read alouds.
Below is a screenshot of our enrichment schedule for August:
The next screenshot is of our entire weekly rhythm which will give you a good idea of how I loop through different subjects.
Even though I say we “loop” through certain things, I do try and keep them on their set days, and I use the 5th day for catching up.
PUTTING IT TOGETHER
ALL IN A DAY
The last thing I want to share with you is how this is broken down in a single day.
Here is Day 1 for an example:
Luke 15:8-10 Telling God’s Story Lesson 1
Copywork: Bed in Summer
Picture Study: A very short bio of Frederic Remington followed by a picture study of The Fall of the Cowboy
Spanish: Speaking Spanish with Miss Mason lesson 1
Folk Song: The Yellow Rose of Texas
one-on-one math & language arts
Cicada Picture Books
Sewing lesson- Learning how to thread a sewing machine
Texas Tomboy ch. 1
As promised, here are the quick links to all of the resources that I am using:
Bible: Telling God’s Story
Spanish Song: Jugo De Naranja
Folk Song: The Yellow Rose of Texas
Nature Study: Cicadas using the Texas Nature Guide by Chickie and Roo
Sewing Lessons using various YouTube tutorials.
Poetry and scripture recitation come from The Harp & Laurel Wreath.
Singing Lessons: Solfa Sofa
Family Read Aloud: Texas Tomboy by Lois Lenski
And there you have it! If you’re struggling to create a daily rhythm for lessons, I hope this was helpful!