Interrupting School For Activity

Interrupting School For ActivityI’m sure if my children had it their way, everyday would find us learning in the field. Often, literally. While I would love to accommodate them, the sad fact is book work needs to be done. Geometry concepts require pen to paper, and diagraming sentences doesn’t work well in the sand. We’re trying to find balance, but just how often can we keep interrupting school for activity?

We’re probably not the first family to discover this dilemma, nor will we be the last. It helps – or hurts, depending on your perspective – that we live in an area where homeschooling abounds and there is never a shortage of activities available. How do we determine which to include and how often?

In our learning routine, we try to include one outside activity per week. This is fairly easy, as our PSP has weekly activities. However, our PSP is not the only group we’re associated with. Our nature groups also meet once a week. Then there is library involvement, volunteer work at the kitten hospital, personal field trips, and more. Pretty quickly, we could be spending everyday learning in the field and getting little to no book work done. Narrowing down our choices is a challenge, a hard one. We want to do it all!

  • Which activities do you think warrant a change in schedule?
  • Do you prefer to plan these activities or be open to spontaneity?
  • How many days of the week do you spend away from book work?
  • Are certain days of the week better than others for activity?
  • Is there a time-slot you prefer for activity (mornings/afternoons)?
  • How early is too early; how late is too late?
  • How do you know when you’re too busy and need to hit the books?

Trying to find balance can be tough. Our kids would gladly drop their books for sunshine and walks by the beach any day of the week. Mom needs to rein in their adventurous natures, and lay foundations in learning. On the other hand, too much book work is also a danger. Getting outdoors is vital.

Through the leading of the Spirit, we’re making the most of both our book time and exploration of the fabulous world God has created. We’re daily inspired to make the most of our time together and enjoy this adventure called homeschooling.

“Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him, and he will act.”
Psalm 37:5

Your Turn!: Share your thoughts with us on how you determine when to interrupt school for activity.

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12 thoughts on “Interrupting School For Activity

  1. We do formal activities once a week. We meet up with our homeschool group twice a month for fieldtrips and once a month for playdates. On the week when nothing is scheduled, we tend to do our own thing. My kids are 3 and 7 so I make sure that they get some fresh air every day (weather permitted). They’ve got alot of energy to burn off, haha. Although our activities are scheduled, we do welcome impromptu outings and fieldtrips. My kids don’t have much book work yet, though.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I handled this with my lone homeschooler by giving him goals of work that need to be done by the end of the week, so if he does too much early in the week he knows to buckle down and get it done. It was great to put in his hands and take responsibility. Much harder I think with younger ones or multiples but I only began homeschooling in middle school.

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  3. My oldest is only 7, but we are very flexible! I try to start at 8, and sometimes breakfast cleanup takes longer and we find ourselves on a different path. On Tuesdays they have music class out and then gymnastics and Friday we eat lunch at a play area for a big homeschool group and we typically have another play date during the week. We keep a low key flexible kind of busy and we spend a lot of time outside learning nature at this age. I don’t stress about needing to take them in errands, but do try to let them learn through the unexpected. My husband is a missionary so is time off is here and there, so we spend time while we can and school on Saturday or Sunday afternoon if we can. Though, half the time the kids don’t know they are doing ‘school.’ And they have better attitudes that way 💗
    How early is too early? Honestly I’ve had bookwork started at 5:30 AM, kids are up, and alert, why wait around? My second child does great learning while cuddling so we do school reading books at night sometimes. Learning can take place anywhere, but you’re right, some things need a desk and committed amounts of time so we try to get those done between 8-10.
    Having a list of year end objectives is a huge win for me. I don’t stress that they do a whole workbook or X amount of hours every day, I just want them to learn this list of concepts and so I don’t lose sight, I write a list per kid. I used a list from a college professor and checked with my States year end requirements and added character and Bible learning and it really isn’t as daunting as you would think. 💗

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  4. It’s the opposite for us. We struggle to find something that fits our size.It’s not that there are no opportunities, it’s just that with five kids of different ages, it’s difficult to attend all age appropriate events. Of which most local homeschooling events are. So, we’re left to happily create our own group outings where and when we can, like making a crazy, homemade comedy video. 🙂

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  5. Well, as an unschooler, I don’t run into this problem very much. I really believe that one learns just as much in outdoor learning as book work. Probably more! I don’t know how much you know about unschooling, but I writing about it a lot on my blog, I’d be honored if you checked it out. I’m really excited about ways parents are integrating some unschooling practices into their homeschooling (and perhaps you’re doing that!). But I also totally understand that different things work for each individual family and I want most for everyone to find a system that works for them!

    Liked by 1 person

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