First Day of School: Morning Time

Yesterday was our first day of school, and we made it.  :)  And: it was all that I had prayed it would be: peaceful, relaxed, and enjoyable.  (Thank you so much, God!)  I was up early, made some cinnamon rolls, hot cocoa, and cooked up some sausage, and then just pulled out the books/things I'd put in a basket to accompany us at the breakfast table, called the kids to eat, and we began our day.

We're easing into our school year with Morning Time only-- which is basically all the stuff we do at the breakfast table.  I feel like God gave me such a great system for this over the summer as I read a few of Cindy Rollins' Morning Time (MT) posts and-- honestly, even MORE importantly, for me: saw a MT schedule of hers.  I just really need a visual for things to gel in my brain, and I am so so thankful she provided that because it gave me an organizational structure to all we've already been doing.  :)

Here is our little Morning Time schedule for October:
(Note: Pretty much everything on the above schedule will change as we move in to other months in the school year (new hymn, new memory verses, new poems, new electives, etc.), but this has given me the needed format for plugging it all in.) I anticipate printing a new schedule for each month, and working from it.

The only change I made to our existing routine was to shift the kids' morning chore time, which had been after breakfast, to now be BEFORE breakfast. This means we can settle in together, first at the table over breakfast, then shifting into the living room (for the Ambleside selections, electives and our read-aloud) without interruption.

As I moved through our morning, I checked things off and made notes on my printed schedule with a colored pen.  (See photo below).  I know there will be mornings we don't get to all of these things, and I'm okay with that.  [For example, when my kids are sick, I always let them sleep in, and we start late those mornings.  Sometimes we have interruptions due to sibling squabbling or disobedience, and it can throw our whole morning.]  I think it will be so helpful for me to have this sheet I've been checking off throughout the week to have a visual of what's been done, so that I can think: "Okay, we've done our hymn 4x this week already.  We can skip that today to save time.


We moved away from the breakfast table after poetry and resumed in the living room-- all sprawled out on couches and the floor-- for some Shakespeare:


And then we ended with our read-aloud and finally some outside time. :) [Which is when I get time to make myself a latte!  ;)]

That's our plan for our mornings.  Next week sometime we'll add in independent work (math, history, copywork) for the older kids, more narrations, and my time with the little girls.  But I'm STILL planning all of that, so we'll get to that when it's ready.  ;)


  1. LOVED this! I think when we first started school last year, I tried a Morning Time schedule, but then my kids were just too little or something...not sure why it didn't work? BUt I really like yours! If you get behind in your "Other electives" do you just go on to the next one or do you try to catch up? I'm doing 4 books in a loop in our MT b/c it hardly EVER goes as planned and I would forever be playing catch-up! :)

    I'm going to go back and read some of your older posts! Great blog! :)

    Ooh! And I love how you guys draw the Shakespeare characters! I'm going to steal that idea!

    1. Hi Catie!
      Thank you so much for commenting! I've always done something similar to this--- here's a simpler looking handwritten schedule,here, but for whatever reason this format helps my brain this year. ;)

      You asked if we get behind in our "Other Electives" category if we move on or try to catch up. Since we're only doing one thing per day in that category (Mondays= Holling C Holling book, Tuesdays= Geography book/lesson), we will just pick up wherever we left off from the previous week. Does that make sense? So if one Monday we get 3 pages read, the following week we'll begin page 4, and see how far we get... until the book is done. I hope I'm understanding your question correctly!

      Blessings to you and yours,

  2. Morning Time is the glue that keeps our homeschool rhythms together. I cannot imagine not gathering together to sing, recite poems, Scripture, catechism, etc. And reading aloud together is the best. Even for the hard books like Beowulf and Ivanhoe. And Plutarch. One reading at a time.

    1. Heather- Yes. Here, too. I love it. I wouldn't trade these years of this gathered time for anything. :) We just started Plutarch this year! So far, so good. :) Slowly and carefully.

  3. What fun to catch up with you this evening! It's a joy to think of you gathered for morning time when we gather for ours ♥ Lifting you all up for a wonderful year and sending hugs by the bushel.

    1. Thank you, dear Quinne. Love to think of that, too. Blessings to you and your dear ones.

  4. I just loved reading this, thinking of you and your kiddos learning together and being thankful alongside of you for the ways God blessed you all on your first day! I miss you, Stacy!!

    1. OH, Rebecca! I miss you! How are you guys? Love to you, friend.


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