I really do think home education is by trial and error. When I started three years ago, it was very much like school at home. Now, I feel that we have finally found a pattern that suits us and it is really enjoyable. I adjusted so many timetables, planned in various ways and subhanaAllah, I really feel that this year (even though I have two little ones) is much more smoother and more relaxed even though R is doing more formal work.
What has helped:
We don’t have a set time that we start. We start when I feel that I am ready and she is ready.
I have a list of things that I want to get through in a day as per our weekly timetable. She tends to do one thing like comprehension and then might go and play. She then comes back and does her maths and might go and do some arts and crafts of her choice. She then comes back to the list and might do her Islamic studies that I’ve set her and might go and watch something on the internet. I feel that the relaxed approach means that she enjoys it and still gets to do independent stuff in between. It does mean that the ‘HE Day’ seems to start somewhere around 10am and finishes around 5/6pm but remember that so much goes on in that time. I prefer this then making her sit down between 9 and 2 and do her work non-stop.
I still plan my week on a Saturday and get all the resources together. It is just so enjoyable this way alhamdulillah. I used to get really stressed before if lessons were not completed in the morning. Now, if something happens in the morning we have the afternoon etc.
Just to give you an idea of our home ed day so far today:
Had breakfast. Changed two lots of nappies. R went to brush her teeth etc. I tidied up a bit. Put a load of washing on. Z was watching something. R started on her handwriting whilst I set up painting for Z. She wanted to do the painting too. I told her she could after she finished her two pages of handwriting. By the time she had finished, Z was done with painting. I then got the playdough out and she wanted to do that instead. She’s almost finished with that and will start the next thing on the list. You see…really relaxed inshaAllah.
Baby Y is starting to really get into his crawling (!) I think my layout in the living room is going to have to change again! He’s really teething badly at the moment too and seems to be always breastfeeding. I’ve realised that life changes in so many ways and so HE has to be flexible to accomodate such changes. If we’re not flexible thats when we as mothers get stressed, the kids hate learning and school becomes very very attractive. Alhamdulillah, with things the way they are I have hardly thought of putting her in school.
Last week, we conducted a science experiment which is still in process. We are growing fungi under different circumstances.
She’s checking the findings regularly and we’ll be recording the results once the fungi has grown. R also started Muslim Beavers last week and really enjoyed the first session. She came home and couldn’t stop talking about Fair Trade. Do check out to see if you have a Muslim Beavers, Cubs or Scouts in your area. I used to be a brownie and a scout when I was younger and I loved it. Feel very grateful to Allah that she got a place. Alhamdulillah.