Back to Homeschool 2013-14 : First Week Update


I knew it was going to take a few days to warm up to the heavy load around here with my sophomores and these tiny, wild preschoolish toddlers that haven’t ever been school-tamed before. I was RIGHT. Day 1 was slow on the academic front. Day 2 was busy, but not much better. Day 3 we managed to get a chunk of history done that wasn’t easy to digest (reading the Epic of Gilgamesh for 5 straight hours, plus a 65 page commentary and long discussion).


I’m so glad I started three days early this year to give us some time to warm up. It is going to be a crazy year, so we needed to take time to get organized and prepare for the whirlwind!


Here’s our DID list for the first three days of the first week of school:

Day 1

Annual Back to School Breakfast at J&J’s BBQ and Catering (breakfast taco heaven, best refried beans ever) Mmmm!
Annual School Supply Shopping
Library stops at the three closest libraries (two that we are getting new cards for, one that we are renewing)
Purchase two garbage sacks full of books (2/3 of them Christian in nature) from the library’s “purge” shelf
Organized our supplies at the house
Went over our academic goals for the school year by subject
Prayed over our school year
Prepared for a back to school Mom’s Fellowship Dinner for our local co-op (cooked enchiladas and Spanish rice)
Read books with preschoolers


Day 2

Bible Study
Lots of History Assignments
Personal Fitness + Service Project (I count it as PE when they do heavy lifting and help at our church)
Leftover Biology Assignments
Review Spanish Worksheets at random (try to log in to their Spanish II online system per instructor’s emailed request)
Stock Groceries
Search for books on our shelves that are on our extensive History/World Lit reading list for the year
Help preschoolers do their letters and draw
Listen to classical music
Teen Court


Day 3

Oops, we didn’t do our Bible study
History Assignments
Read ALL of Epic of Gilgamesh and 65 page commentary (took pretty much our entire school day)
Read 1/4 of The Help (for fun)
Read first few chapters of The New Answers Book 1
Clean out preschool closet in baby’s room and gather preschool books
Sort all the toys and clean the baby’s room (after they played with blocks, trains, Angry Bird toys, electronics, etc.)
Sort through school boxes and put last year’s work in portfolios
Help preschoolers do letters on dry erase board
Water the garden and pick tomatoes and peppers
Mama has lengthy discussion with math curriculum vendor over the phone (questions about program)


Day 4

Was really supposed to be our first day of school. Shhhh! Don’t tell my kids.
[The records are showing that we started on Aug 22nd.]

As you can see, it takes us a little while to work the kinks out. But I’m sure we can find it in ourselves to get serious and start rocking the assignment list a little harder.


Here’s our Day 4 TO DO list below:

Bible Study
History Assignment Smorgasbord
Finish Reading Answers
Finish organizing school boxes, gathering supplies and books for high school/preschool
Biology leftover assignments
2 hours Spanish II plus drive-time
Personal Fitness (Pilates)
Reading for homework
Help tidy the school stuff & house, and help cook dinner

*Papa John over for dinner!


Bible Study
Preschool Planning & Post
Pay bills
Reconcile Bank Statement
Purchase Math Curriculum
Pilates with kids
Books in mail from Amazon for History
Sort last 2-3 toy boxes, purge
Go through upstairs school supply closet
Laundry like crazy
Mushroom soup for lunch
Lasagna and salad for dinner

I was doing really great on my diet (back on again after taking time off this summer), but I caved in and had carbs for dinner (brown rice at Pei Wei) and then two oreos with milk as a late night snack. Oh, well. At least I exercised (and stopped at only 2 cookies).


And so, our first week has been a smooth transition from summer to a more purposeful and organized learning environment and schedule.

That’s the beauty of homeschooling… you do what WORKS for your family – and stop doing what doesn’t, hopefully! No need to beat your head against those rocky, ceiling-high expectations of a perfect first week.


Just enjoy the journey and be ever so thankful for the blessing of being able to teach your kids at home. Keep the important things in focus (unlike this photo below)…


Here’s to hoping your school year – and mine – is blessed.

Highschoolin’ and Preschoolin’,


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  1. says

    Heather, your kids are beautiful :)

    We were due to start tomorrow, but I’m not as prepared as I want to be. However, I think we will start with Math and our Queens Lang. Lessons and feel good about it :)

    One day you and I need to meet in the middle of our awesome state and do Mexican Food!

    Have a great week,