Getting our Summer Groove

We’re several weeks into our new routine now, and loving summer! Nature walks, art, some music theory, poetry—summer school is in full swing. And thankfully, it’s all that I’d hoped and intended it to be.

I get a lot of questions about our summer school schedule, so I thought I’d share what our day looks like right now.

First of all, I’ve split our subjects and assigned them on different days. For instance, we do art and nature study one day; we do music and perhaps some poetry on another day; we do Life of Fred everyday. In all, we do our activities for roughly an hour a day. Nothing heavy, and lots of fun mommy-time with the kids.

music theory and music appreciation
music theory and music appreciation

Every day looks a little different. This is summer. This is our break. And while I want something to structure our days, I don’t want to be so regimented we’re not getting our breather. So first thing in the morning, I send them outside to play, to take advantage of the cool mornings before everything heats up. After playing for a couple of hours, they are usually ready for some structured activities. Oldest is still doing his Reflex Math everyday, usually while I shower and finish up with Littlest. Our “summer school” usually gets started around 11 a.m. and finishes up when we get hungry, around noon-ish.

Oldest's rendition of our dog at sunset
Oldest’s rendition of our dog at sunset

One day, we took a walk and did a nature scavenger hunt  (something taller than you, something smaller than your thumb, something that needs air, etc.); we also talked about the anatomy of trees and the different kinds of trees (deciduous/broadleaf and conifer/evergreen). Then we came in, cooled off, and did some art, learning to sketch with an ebony pencil.

art and nature study
art and nature study

On another day, we read Life of Fred on the front porch and then did a read-aloud together.

Another day, we practiced music together, learning notes on the scale using Lady Treble and the Seven Notes and Oldest’s recorder lesson book and Middlest’s Dora piano.

We added some extra stickers from "Lady Treble" to her Dora piano.
We added some extra stickers from “Lady Treble” to her Dora piano.

On yet another day, we went for a walk to pick different kinds of leaves, we read about the different leaf shapes and why plants need leaves, then we did leaf rubbings in our nature notebooks—and watercolored.

summer school schedule

It’s a little structure and a lot of fun. It’s learning in a casual setting. It’s creating and exploring and enjoying summer.