Before I even knew of the morning time basket popularity, I was already doing something similar with my boys. I tend to think that those who have a more Charlotte Mason learning atmosphere tend to incorporate this morning time into their day whether intentionally or not.
When I first started morning time I didn’t use a basket. I don’t believe that you need a basket or even a detailed plan in order to incorporate the morning time philosophy in your home or homeschool. I don’t even think you need to be a homeschooling family in order to have morning time with your kids.
The morning time idea is centered on the idea of whetting your children’s appetites for rich literature, music and/or art. It’s an intentional time the day for read aloud, group discussion, Bible time and even memorization.
The best thing about morning time is that you can tailor it to meet your families needs or desires. You can do as little or as much you’d like for as long or as little as you’d like. If your kids are into science, you can read fun and interesting science books as well as your living books. The point is is that when your morning time material is tailored to your kid’s interest you will have them completely engaged.
Your kids will beg for one more chapter, one more song and it will be a challenge not to because you want to keep their well wet.
I used to break up our morning time, I’d read a chapter of our living book in the living room while they played at my feet before we started our school routine. This year I’m trying a new routine. We are starting our morning time at the start of our school day once everyone is at their desks. I’m going for a more intentional and organized route now that I’ve seen first hand how much my kids love this time.
Read Aloud Selection
This one changes on a regular basis as we work through books. I like to choose books from the book list suggestion in our My Father’s World teacher manuals in either the kindergarten or first-grade set. I also like to get books from the reading list included in Honey for a Child’s Heart. This resource has books suggestions broken into age groups, it’s a great tool to have on hand for read alouds.
I like to choose longer chapter books that really engage them. Last year we read through Mr. Poppers Penguins and we all just loved it! It is amazing to see how much they get into a book! I plan to go through the Little House on the Prairie series but for now we working on Charlotte’s Web.
We read one selection from the first grade Big Book of 5 Minute Devotions. I love that this book has comprehension questions and colorful engaging pictures, each one has a Bible verse to accompany the lesson. Then we read the Bible verses outlined in the Kindergarten set.
After our reading and Bible time, we move into memory work. We practice each boy’s memory verse and then we recite the pledge of allegiance. We want to instill a love for the Bible and our country into our children.
Next we sing some songs and I play different types of musicians from each musical CD that is included in our curriculum.
I must admit that this is the hardest part for me. I tend to just love the music I love, such as the Rochester family and Seminole String Band, bluegrass southern is my thing and basically nothing else. Yet I married a musical man who loves all kinds of music and different singers and groups. It’s important to him that I introduce other kinds of music to our kids.
The lesson here is that even if you aren’t a fan of classical music, classic books, poems or even art doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t introduce them to your kids.
This is our transitional time. We go from morning time to more structured school time. During each of these steps the kids get to discuss the books, the songs, the Bible, etc. but once we move into school work they need to start getting into work mode. This is the perfect way to do that.
We go over the date, the days of the week, the weather and the letter of the week review. They do their 100 days of school straws, coin cups and counting.
We end our morning time by saying a quick prayer to bless our school day. This is the single that our morning time has ended and it’s time hit the books.
So far our more organized morning time and keeping everything in a basket, wth our routine printed out, has been working out great. I say routine and not scheduled because sometimes you have to improvise, you read 3 chapters and end up needed to nix everything else in order to hit the books. Having our routine printed out helps me not to forget something, it doesn’t make a slave to it.
Our Litte Lady usually asks, “is morning time over?” Or “why is morning time over?”. She is only 3 and she is fully engaged during morning time, it is never too early to start. Don’t underestimate what your little ones can tolerate or even understand. If we get to a word in a book they don’t understand, I simply define it and carry on.
One of the best things about morning time and reading rich literature to them is that they start to incorporate bigger words into their own vocabulary and that is pretty awesome!
Looking for some help and direction with incorporating morning time into your school day? Check out Pan Barnhill’s Morning Basket guide. She walks you through the planning, how to get started and what to use, she gives you ideas and answers all your burning questions!
Grab your FREE printable here!
Your turn! Do you do some type of morning time with your kids? Do you want to start? Let’s chat in the comments below!
This post may be linked up with any of these blogs.