We wrapped up our homeschool year, and now it is summertime! Our oldest finished 2nd grade, our middle child finished kindergarten, and our youngest finished “Teeny Tot School.”
One of the websites I enjoy is called Power of Moms. Saren Loosli wrote a nice article and made a podcast about structuring a summer vacation. She recommends having children complete daily chores, do some work on academics to maintain skills, and have at least one fun activity per day. Saren does not homeschool, but she has the heart of a home educator. I think many homeschooling families will like her ideas! We know how children thrive on routine, and quite frankly, so do most adults. Summertime can quickly slip away, and having structure can help us accomplish our family goals.
Here is an outline for what we are planning to do for our family this summer. I hope it inspires you to consider how you want your summer to look. I am calling these “sketches” because we haven’t tried it yet. I will write an update later in the summer.
Weekly Routine Sketch
The names for each day of the week is taken from Saren’s article, “Do It Yourself Summer Camp.” They are catchy!
Make It Monday: We’ll make things. I am *hoping* to plan out useful projects that we can make around the house to improve our home and routines (e.g., make a garden, decorate notebooks and reading bins, finish a basement project, etc.). In a couple of weeks, we’ll make strawberry jam! We’ll also complete some fun art projects. We will make time to build things, like Legos, Lincoln Logs, Plus Plus, Magnatiles, etc.
Take a Trip Tuesday: We’ll meet friends at parks some weeks, and other weeks we’ll have family time visiting state parks, amusement parks, and local history museum. If there is a week where my family is sick (since colds can and do happen in the summertime!), then we could take a pretend trip to another country. For example, we could pretend to visit France, read books about France, watch You tube videos about France, and I could briefly teach them some French words. You get the idea!
Wet Wednesday: This will be a time to run through the sprinkler in the back yard, fill up a kiddie pool, go to a splash pad, go to a beach, or go to an indoor water park. It’s summer after all–why not make sure we get wet?!
Thinking Thursday: This will be a day we go to the library. There are three libraries that we enjoy visiting and we will rotate among them. My son is *very* excited to participate in the library’s summer reading program. During the week, we will make a list of ideas that we want to learn more about (e.g., “I wonder why the sky is blue…”). Then when it’s Thinking Thursday, we will go to the library and look for books about those topics. If there is a week where some of the children are sick , then we’ll look things up on-line as a family to learn more. (I *do* think it’s wise to plan for what to do if kids get sick–that way, your schedule isn’t turned upside down completely.)
Friend Fridays: We’ll plan to meet up with friends on Fridays. Although we’ll see friends during the week, setting up a day to make sure we see friends will be a treat!
Saturdays and Sundays will continue to be the days where we get caught up on housework, run errands, go to mass, and rest.
Daily Routine Sketch
- 7:30am Breakfast
- 8:00am Morning Chores
- 8:30am Morning Must Dos: Free Writing, Math Facts, Handwriting or Typing
- 9:15am Fun Activity, if Must Dos are complete
- 11:30am Lunch
- 12:30pm Afternoon Chores
- 1:00pm Silent Reading Time
- 1:30pm Quiet Time: Drawing, Quiet Play Activities, Reading, and/or Rest
- 2:30pm Snack
- 3:00pm Fun Activity or Exercise
- 4:30pm Dinner prep, Evening Chores
- 5:30pm Dinner and talk about what was read that day and special activities
- 6:45pm Bedtime Chores
- 7:15pm Stories and bedtime by 7:30-7:45pm
Will I always stick to this neat routine? No…I am sure it won’t happen as much as I like. I am a planner, though, and if I start with a routine, it is more likely to be accomplished.
I’m looking forward to trying this out! The children are excited, too. My daughter said before bed on Sunday, “I can’t wait to find out what we’ll do on Make It Monday tomorrow!”
Do you have plans for your family this summer? Do you prefer to not plan and just take each day as it comes?