A Day in the Life – Drebes Family

Y’all, this girl gives me grace upon grace.  I have stumbled, more than once, in front of her and she has kindly and generously encouraged me and supported me. God is using her to work in my life and I’m grateful!

Please welcome my friend Kim to the A Day in the Life series today. Perhaps those with teenagers will especially find the change in her homeschooling heart encouraging. 


Years ago I would probably have won an award for “least likely to become a homeschool mom.”  I was forced to homeschool for my ninth grade year.  Literally. I threatened to run away (more than once) when I heard the news that my parents could no longer afford to send my brother, sister, and myself to Christian school!  My parents told us ahead of time that it was only for one year. After that first year we could choose to either remain homeschooled or attend the big public school in our area.  My mom was an amazing teacher, but I chose to go back to school even though my older brother and younger sister decided to remain homeschooled throughout high-school. As embarrassing as this is to admit, I just didn’t want to be seen as a nerd by my peers.  My rebellious spirit broke my parents’ hearts.  If I were to be completely honest, my decision broke my own heart too that day.  In high school, I had lots of friends and good grades, but with none of my friends having a faith in God, it was nearly impossible to walk closely with the Lord, and it was seemingly even more impossible to have a great relationship with my parents.  


Fast-forward twenty years, and here I am homeschooling my own two precious boys, ages 5 and 7! Within the first year after my older boy was born, I knew there was no way I could ever send that little boy to school and be away from him all day!  When I first told my husband, Josh, that I wanted to homeschool, he had that same look of panic I did twenty years ago when my parents made that homeschooling announcement to me.  It only took a few weeks for me to convince him that homeschooling was going to be the “greatest decision he ever made in his whole life.”  I literally said those exact words!  It helped my cause that a bus full of middle school kids gave him the finger as he was driving behind them one day on his way to work.  He called me and said, “Honey, you can thank bus number 24 for this. I want you to homeschool!”  I continue to thank God for those children’s fresh fingers-ha!  Josh is now the biggest fan of homeschooling and will seriously talk up homeschooling to anyone and everyone!

We have been homeschooling and attending Classical Conversations for the past 3 years, but this is the first year I actually love our curriculum and routine.  I was notorious for buying curriculum, hating it and losing lots of money each year. Josh has always been so gracious to me when I ask him to put our nearly new books on e-bay, because after two months that curriculum I swore was going to be amazing turned out to be not all it was cracked up to be…yet again!  

This year, I knew I wanted Classical Conversations to come to life throughout our week.  My friend and I split up the weeks, did the lesson planning over the summer, and added a few lessons a day to our school week to help the CC information further reach the hearts of our little ones.  I have loved it…consistently loved it!  Does that mean our days are always smooth and that I am the patient mom I so desire to be?  Not at all!   Not even close.  My little guy has caught me more than once with my eyes shut while he is on my lap learning to read.  It is not because I am really that tired, it is because I am fighting the urge to sigh loudly and am truly praying for patience as he pronounces the word “was” as “waaaaassssss” for the fifth time in that paragraph alone! I fail daily, but trust that God’s word is true.  He says in 1 Corinthians 15:58 “Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”

Here is a rough look at our daily schedule.  The times are not included because every day is a bit different, and honestly I love the flexib
ility of homeschooling!

7:30ish -The boys wake me up.  We snuggle and play a ridiculous game where my little guy makes my older guy and me act as different animals or animal owners every.single.day!! I make it my goal every year to be up before them, but this rarely ever happens . I would rather wake up to the sound of their voices instead of those obnoxious alarm beeps anyway.


The boys make their beds and do other chores – bring down cups, put away clothes, get dressed, and put their dirty clothes into the hamper.  I rush to get dressed, make my bed, put my hair up, and put on make-up, just in case people pop-over unexpectedly!

Journal: The topic or question is written on a whiteboard in the kitchen.  The boys work on their journals as I make breakfast. The boys share what they wrote in their journals and eat breakfast while we read the Bible(Storybook or Action Bible) and discuss the virtue of the week (from We Choose Virtues) and life-skill of the week. The life-skill is something I want the boys to learn like how to open presents the right way, how to treat girls, or how to greet people the best way.  I often find myself doing the important training during times of correction and discipline, but this gives me some time to discuss these topics when the boys are not already upset! 

Math: We use Right Start Math with both boys. We are almost finished level B, but I plan on doing level B again with my little guy and moving my older one up to level C next year.   Right now my little boy does so great, but there are definitely times when I need to adjust the lessons to his level. 

Language Arts: Next, I sit on the couch with my little one and teach him to read using the book Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons.  It is not super fun or colorful, but man, that book sure can teach a kid to read!!! 

My older son works independently on his spelling lesson from Words Their Way – Within Word Patterns level.  On Fridays we pull out their magnetic letters and review what they have learned.  They love it, and this is a great way for me to see if they are ready to move on or not.

RECESS -a 15 minute time for the boys to play outside…usually rain or shine.  It gives me a quick chance to fold a load of laundry, clean the white kitchen floor tiles… again~arggh, or just breathe! It gives the boys a chance to run and laugh, build forts, or more recently use anything they can find to build a trap to catch a rabbit so they can keep him as a pet!

These next two time slots are where the Classical Conversations information from the week is incorporated into our day. 

Tuesdays: We do an art lesson and project from a specific time period or country and watch a short history video on-line.

Wednesdays: We read a b
ook about the history topic and work on a science experiment.   

Thursdays: The boys work on picture/ kid writing about the history and then do a geography activity.

Fridays:  We play a little history game or skit and then bake something from that time period or place in history.

More Language Arts: First Language Lessons with both boys.  Next, my older son works on copy workwhile my little guy does his Handwriting Without Tears lesson.  

Then we all go outside and play!

My boys love to read and even more so love to be read to.  We read anytime throughout the day and always before bed!

Home-schooling is not the easiest thing, but man I sure wouldn’t change this decision for anything… ANYTHING!

Don’t you love seeing how God changed Kim from a once reluctant (to say the least!) homeschooled student to an enthusiastic and thoughtful homeschooling mom? I’m so grateful God doesn’t hold us to decisions we’ve made once, but allows us to change our minds.  And in case you were wondering, she’s no nerd! 

Comments

  1. says

    It’s interesting to see how you make the week fun and active for your children — I so enjoyed reading this post! Thanks for your candor. :-)

    Mind if I include this in the June carnival?

  2. says

    I needed to hear that part about you and your little guy reading together! Thank goodness its not just my kid saying”waaaasss!” Lol! Love CC and teach your child to read. Blessings!

    • says

      Ha!! That is funny your child does the same thing! It really is so amazing watching them learn to read…I can’t imagine tackling that task without 100 Easy Lessons, though:)

  3. Anonymous says

    We are finishing “Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons” too. What did you like to use for Lanuage Arts after they’ve completed that level?

    • says

      As soon as they finish 100 Easy Lessons, I start them on Pathway readers. They are chapter books so the kids feel like they are reading “big kid” stories, but the words are not difficult. They have helped my boys develop confidence in their reading. I hope this helps:)

  4. Anonymous says

    Hi. Am I correct that you do CC at home and do not belong to a community? I am considering CC but am concerned about losing a day to travel to a community.

    • says

      Hi anon! I’m Beth, who hosts the blog. Kim wrote this post. We’re both actually part of the same CC community, which meets once weekly. The travel is short for us and the time worthwhile! Please feel free to message me if you have more questions about doing CC!

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