Thursday, April 30, 2009


Lots of people are curious as to what a typical day looks like in our home school. I also would like to be able to look back at my blog in a couple months/years and see what we were doing in April 2009. So I thought I would write about an average morning in our home. Let me preface this by saying that there really are no "typical" days in our home. Every day brings its own surprises. So here is a glimpse of what happened on an ordinary April morning in the Smithdeal home:
Travis took Will to school early this morning(actually, Will drove Travis-now that he has his learner's permit). Travis came home and I was up with the children doing laundry, getting out breakfast, etc...We have a tradition that we use the first of the wild Asparagus to make omelets. So I made Travis an Omelet which he devoured :). Some of the children wanted pancakes, so we made pancakes and bacon. We started to clean up, but at around 10:30 Anna wanted to be put down for a nap(which involves nursing her to sleep, usually in the rocking chair in my room). I headed upstairs for a nice respite, when Emily came in the room with a copy of Henri Fabre's Storybook Of Science. We began to read about electricity. Sam, who was listening ,said very excitedly, " that's what all those little sparks are that I see in my covers every night.." This launched us into a long conversation about static electricity.
Enter: Oliver-who just woke up about fifteen minutes ago(late night baseball is rough on the kids!). "Mom," he said,"I didn't get any pancakes. Will you make me some please?" I explained that I was tied up at the moment, but he could put some on the griddle himself. "There's no batter left," he replied expectantly. So I told him how to make the batter and cook them. He went down stairs and made them and did a very good job! Sometimes my kids do much better when I can't tend to them right away!
Back to the science. In his book, Fabre describes an experiment you can do with paper and a stove that demonstrates electricity at work. So down we go to the kitchen. The experiment is a success! That's always a plus, as lots of times the books make it look so easy, only to have the experiment fail and the kids thoroughly disappointed.
When we were doing the experiment, the paper became brown and dingy-resembling an old historical document. Emily noticed this and asked if she could use it as "olden days" stationery. She spent the next thirty minutes writing on this paper!
Meanwhile, Sam, Oliver, Mary Margaret and I pulled out our Let's Read And Find Out books about storms and electricity (incidentally, this was the first set of books I ever bought for my kids- 25 cents a piece at the Christian Mission in Alabama. Kind of fitting that Will's first books wre science books! I highly recommend these books to anyone who wants to have fun learning about science.) We then read a book about St. Jerome and the Lion by Rumer Godden. It was a sweet story. We finished up with The Grey Lady And The Strawberry Snatcher by Molly Bang-an absolute all time favorite of my children!!!
Anna woke up and we never finished the kitchen, so we tidied the house and began making lunch. All and all, it was a nice, happy morning. Normally we would have been outside, but the rain kept us in to enjoy the coziness of learning together!