What’s in the Workbox?–summer edition

We have had a blast with our new summer schedule this week. Our morning routine usually takes about an hour; and then I spend another hour in the heat of the afternoon with just my son. I’ve loved the change. It feels like summer–without all of the randomness and chaos of boredom.

Here’s a peak at our summer workbox contents.

Pocket #1:

Smells Notebooking Page

We took two 10-minute nature walks yesterday. One during the day, and one in the evening with Daddy. The day smells were recorded into the kids’ nature journals. The night smells will be written on our smells notebook page this morning.

Pocket #2:

We are going to watercolor one of the flowers we pressed this week. And yes! Those ARE watercolor crayons. I ordered a set of pencils for myself, but the crayons have turned out to be my favorite. I love them! It will be the kids’ first time to use them today.

Pocket #3:

Van Gogh Picture Study

I can’t wait to share more about our Van Gogh study. Today we get to continue our picture study of Van Gogh’s “Bedroom at Arles” painting. And the kids will get to color their own copy of the painting while listening to Handel’s Water Music. In my plans for the summer, I have art scheduled for Monday through Wednesday; we simply listen to Handel on those days. On Thursdays and Fridays, we will actually look at Handel’s bio and study the music itself; we will not do much with art on those days.

And that’s it for our morning routine. Now for the afternoon pockets–

Pocket #4:

Rather than placing my “Poster Center” card in the pockets, I’ve experimented with placing things for him to bring to Poster Time. This has helped him immensely, and he is learning to be a little more independent with his review. I let him do his chart and flashcards on his own while I just listen in. The felt-backed letters are for our Make-a-Word game. I’ll make a word on our felt board, and then he will read it.

Pocket #5:

Since I’m still waiting on my K5 materials to come in, I’m using the left-over worksheets from K4 with the lesson plans for K5. Not ideal, but it’s working. Because I didn’t follow every iota of the lesson plans in K4, I do have an unfinished workbook (EEK! I know. Horrible, isn’t it?) I concluded that it was really a matter of what he knew, not what he finished that mattered. And since he aced all the K4 evaluation material, why make him do busy work? (Especially when we can be busy with watercolor and nature walks, right?)

Pocket #6:

He has read all of these “Little Book” Readers for K4, but I’m insisting that he reads them perfectly now–no sounding or guessing. When he reads a book perfectly, he gets to take it to his “library” in his room. I love these A Beka readers. So colorful and fun!

Pocket #7:

This is handwriting today. We are learning about the structure of a sentence, and I love this activity from Confessions of a Homeschooler. After making his own sentence, my son will write the sentence he has made for handwriting practice. We’ll do this for about 10 minutes (I’ll set the timer).

Pocket #8:

Math Poster Center, bring-along activities. He’ll review numbers 1-20, 1+ addition table, and counting to 100 (by tens and by ones).

Pocket #9:

This is another bring-along activity for Poster Time, from A Beka’s arithmetic games. We’ll be reviewing counting change. I usually have him write the amount on the chalkboard as well, giving him some extra practice writing his numbers.

Pocket #10:

Last activity of the day is an oral graded evaluation. I will repeat a number orally two times, and he must write them. The numbers are pretty simple, so I’m not worried about the grading part. But I think it will be a tremendous exercise in being attentive (I can only repeat the number twice). Listening and following directions is a skill that needs a little work right now.

Just as I had thought, we finish our phonics/math activities in about half the time without the little one there (she’s napping during this time). Which means that our afternoon activities usually take about an hour. He loves this. An hour of just “me and mommy” time.

And that’s our day! I’m loving summer right now.