So last week, I talked about the 1 Thing that can change your homeschooling, Morning Time. I promised you this week I would talk about how we do it for our family and give you ideas for how you can incorporate it into your day as well. Making the Best Part of Your Day: Morning Time.
What is Morning Time again?
This is the time you set aside to work on those subjects that never seem to get covered. It is also a time to teach your children about spending time daily with God. This is through scripture memorization, reading, discussions, talking about things you’ve read in the bible and singing Hymns.
For us, Morning Time also includes a variety of other things. Each of my children has a poem they are memorizing for the month. We work on English from the Roots Up. Last year we added folk songs from the list on Ambleside Online. This year we are adding Composers, Art, Plutarch, Shakeaspeare, Nature Studies, and a Poet. These will change every 3 months for our family.
But I’m not a Morning Person
I’m not telling you to get up yourself and your kids up at 5 am to have your morning time. I’m saying that when you get up in the morning one of the first things you do is have Morning Time. This way you will guarantee that it is completed. You make it a priority. It is important. Just like making sure to feed your children breakfast to start their day, you make Morning Time a priority so that these things are accomplished for your children’s education.
Our Morning Time doesn’t happen at the exact same time every day. A lot of it depends on when my children are up, have eaten and finished their morning chores. BUT, once everything is completed this is the first thing we sit down to do.
How do you set it up?
I have a variety of age groups, but they all have something in common. Each child wants to have their own copy to hold themselves so in comes the binder.
In each binder, you will find copies of the poems that child will memorize for the school year, copies of the memory verses from Proverbs, and the family memory verse, copies of the hymns we are going to learn, a copy of the books and chapters of the bible for them to mark off as we read them, and selections from Psalms.
In my binder, you will find ALL of that and some things we use for the rest of our Morning Time when the teens break away to do their own work. I have a copy of EVERYTHING so I know if the poem is being recited correctly and that everything is being covered.
So how do you actually do this?
After everyone is ready we usually meet in the living room, making sure everyone has their binder. Sometimes we will go in the order of the binders and other times we go as the children ask. Maybe they have really been working on their poem and want to share it. Maybe they have been working on a certain memory verse and are ready to share it.
We go through every section of our binder, each of the children takes turns reciting poetry, scripture, reading from the bible or answering questions and when we are finished we end in prayer. Who says prayer depends on a lot of things, but if someone is really struggling and having a bad day, then that person is the one chosen to say the prayer for our day. Sometimes a child will volunteer, but if not then I do it. If I have something I really want to be said then I will be the one to say the prayer to cover all that is in our hearts.
What do I need to make my own binder and does everyone need one?
Not everyone needs a binder, but this is something that has really helped our family. With having so many children in different ages, it has just been easier for them to each have their own binder. The only thing that is different about each binder is the poetry they are memorizing.
To make your binders, you will need a 1″ binder. I prefer them with a clear front and back to put our own cover on them. I also make them all the same color so there is no fighting about color. You will also need page protectors and tabs. I use these page protecters and tabs from Amazon. Finally, you will need to print out what you want to memorize this year so you can place them in the binder before you hand them out or you start using yours if you are only making 1.
What are your kids doing this year?
I’m so glad you asked. In fact, I have a great printable for you so you can use this to get some ideas for your own Morning Time Binders. In this document, you will find my list of everything we are using in our Morning Time except for the books we are reading.
We are applying the Charlotte Mason method with my younger ones even more by reading several books at once. I don’t know quite how they will keep up with all of it, but Miss Mason assures us that they will. We are working our way through Year 4 of Amleside Online and can find the list of other books HERE!
So here is the picture of my document, just lick on it and you will be able to download it.
Not Just for Homeschoolers
If you don’t homeschool you are probably thinking this is a waste of your time, but I promise it isn’t. I know of many families who set time aside in the morning for family devotionals, scripture memorization or to just talk together. These things are vital to the growth of your child.
Not only are you expanding their mind, but you are telling them that you are truly interested in what they are learning and them personally. Every child wants to know their parents value them, and honestly how do you expect them to value their education if you don’t? As I said before, it doesn’t have to take long, but just the act of doing it changes everything.
Best Part of Your Day: Morning Time
When things were at the craziest for us, a new bay, moving, sickness, or holidays, we always made time for Morning Time. It wasn’t always this full, but it was always full of the important things in life. These are the things I want my children to know and can help carry them through their life.
When it comes to deciding what you want in your morning time think of it this way. If you are seriously ill or were even dying, what would you want your children to know and remember? What would you want them to remember their time with you like? What is most important to you? Those are the things you need to make sure to include in your Morning Time.
Do you use Morning Time? What do you include?