Friday, November 10, 2017

Homeschool Morning Basket November 2017

Since the beginning of this pregnancy, we had kind of slacked off on doing much of a real "morning basket" or "morning time" routine in our homeschool. But we have missed it very much, so I have decided to bring the morning basket idea back!

Our morning basket routine will change some from month to month, and some days it may look totally different from another. But I want to share what is currently working to help start our homeschool day off right.

With the 6 year age gap between Big Brother and Little Brother, my goal is to make morning time something that they can both benefit from and enjoy together.

Morning Music

I have gotten back into the habit of turning on a music CD when we get up in the morning. It really helps us wake up and greet the day on a more positive note. A few days this week we have listened to a Christmas album by The Singing Echoes (a family Gospel group we were able to see in concert recently), and this morning we pulled out the ABeka Sing Unto the Lord 4th Grade CD and listened to the hymns and choruses designated for the month of November. We keep the music playing through morning chores and breakfast.


We are privileged as Americans and homeschoolers to have the freedom to begin our school day with prayer and worship. And the day just goes so much smoother when we exercise that "privilege to carry everything to God in prayer." (Joseph Scriven - "What a Friend")


We also have the privilege to build the education of our children on the sure foundation of God's Word.

While Big Brother is working independently through his ACE Bible Reading PACEs daily, I also want to start our day with some Bible time together.

A couple days this week I have chosen to read the boys a short Scripture related to thankfulness. This morning I asked Big Brother if he had anything he had been learning in his own Bible reading that he wanted to share. So today he shared with us that he had learned where the longest and shortest verses in the Bible are located (Esther 8:9 & John 11:25 respectively) and read them to us. Then we went down a short rabbit trail because Esther 8:9 referred to the Persian kingdom stretching from India to Ethiopia so we had to grab the globe and show this area to Little Brother.

For Little Brother I pulled out a sweet little book called Bible Forget-Me-Nots that features beautiful pictures, short stories, and poems to help with learning short KJV verses. We read about Jesus and the children and discussed Luke 18:16.


Next for Little Brother, I quickly handed him a capital letter A flashcard and a lowercase letter a flashcard (these came from ABeka) and let Big Brother help introduce each one to him. He already knows most letter names, but I think a quick reminder each morning might be helpful to him.

Then we worked on a ten-sentence oral exercise from our ABeka Oral Language Exercises booklet. I love this book! It teaches good grammar skills so gently, and it is so easy to implement. The exercises are perfect for any age, so both boys can participate in repeating the quick sentences aloud.

Zoo Animal

Our boys both LOVE animals, so I thought some type of animal study might be fun for them to do together. We have Answers in Genesis's Zoo Guide: A Bible-Based Handbook to the Zoo, and the boys were delighted to start reading through it one animal at a time. The book is spiral bound, and each two-page spread features a full-color picture of the animal and a page of interesting facts about it.


With Thanksgiving coming up soon, I wanted to include an interesting read-aloud book related to this season. So we are reading Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving a few pages at a time. This book is so well-written and beautifully illustrated that both boys can enjoy it.

U.S. Presidents & States

This last part of our morning time was at Big Brother's request. He wants to learn the names of the U.S. Presidents in order and relearn all the states and capitals.

So I included one flashcard for each in our morning basket. I just say the name of the President or state and the boys take turns repeating them. Little Brother is such a good copy cat right now, it wouldn't surprise me at all if he ends up memorizing these right along with Big Brother!

Once our morning time is over, Big Brother gets started on his school goals for the day, Little Brother heads off to play, and I pretty much grab some water and go put my feet up to rest for a while. For now this simple morning basket routine is working nicely for us. Eventually I hope to change it up and include some different books and activities.

Do you do a morning basket or other special morning routine in your homeschool? I would love to hear your ideas!

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