Morning Time is the time in our day when we gather together to study the subjects that are best studied in a group. It has been a wonderful way to simplify our homeschool. It doesn’t, however, always run smoothly though! Start your homeschool on the right foot with these 7 tips to a peaceful homeschool Morning Time!
Video: 7 Tips to a Peaceful Homeschool Morning Time
Morning Time is one of my favorite times with our kids, but I have to be honest, it doesn’t always play out the way I have planned.. As much as I want to start each day with truth, goodness, and beauty, some days it’s …less than inspiring, to say the least! Can you relate?!
In our 14 years of homeschooling, I have learned a few strategies that can help bring peace to our Morning Time practice and that is what I want to share with you in this post.
#1 Start the Night Before
If you take a little bit of time the night before to tidy up, it can make all the difference the next morning. For me, the biggest help is clearing the counters. Set your timer for 10 minutes and clear all counter and table tops in site. Look at the visual clutter in the room where you do Morning Time and put away the most obvious items. This brief habit the night before will set the tone for the next day. Waking up to a clutter-free space will inspire you, no matter what setbacks you encounter first thing in the morning.
#2 Have a Plan
You will have better results in Morning Time if your kids know what. to expect. Kids thrive with boundaries. Here are some ideas to try.
- Have a beginning and ending time (roughly). I expect our kids to be at Morning Time dressed and ready to go at 8:30. They know it usually lasts 30-45 minutes.
- Have subjects you do daily and others you do on a loop schedule. This provides consistency, but also keeps it from getting boring.
- Kids should know the expectations. Should they be sitting down during this time or are you comfortable with them moving around? Can they color, play, draw, whisper, do Lego’s? Let them know ahead of time what you will allow and what is not okay.
- We often having our Morning Time and breakfast together. Reading aloud goes smoothly when kids are eating.
- Keep moving through the subjects. Kids do better with short lessons.
#3 Make It Visual
One of the surest ways to make sure your kids are retaining the content you are covering is to have a visual for them. Have all the material in one place. One way I do this is by printing out Morning Time notebooks, one for each child. Each notebook has pages with the memory work, poems, picture study, composers, etc. that we will be studying for the year. Having everything in one place, written out for them will help them remember it more easily.
#4 Ideas for Babies and Toddlers
Babies and toddlers present a real wild card in homeschooling. If it’s easier to do Morning Time during nap time, then go for it! There is not reason why you have to do it at any certain time.
I keep a drawer full of puzzles, crayons and coloring books, blocks, playdough, etc. in the same bureau dresser where we keep our Morning Time Notebooks. This way we always have something on hand to distract little ones. Small babies are a little easier since they can be appeased by nursing, but for older babies, putting them in a booster seat with snacks has been the trick for me.
For more ideas, read
Best Tips for Homeschooling With Toddlers in the House (Get the free printable Busy Ideas for Toddlers.)
#5 Expect Distractions and Prepare for Them
Nothing can change the atmosphere of Morning Time more quickly than constant annoying distractions. If you think it won’t happen in your homeschool, you are in for a rude awakening! A home is much different than the four walls of a classroom. Our homes are full of distractions…the timer going off on the drier, a neighbor mowing the lawn, the dog whining to go out, kids arguing, urgent text messages…the list is exhaustive. How can you prepare for distractions? These are a few measures I have tried with success.
- Turn off your phone or silence it. If you use your phone for some of your Morning Time activities, turn it upside down. Also, limiting notifications can eliminate a lot of interruptions.
- When kids fight, complain, argue, etc., take the time to address this issue, otherwise, they probably won’t really be paying attention. It may throw off your plans, but in the long run, it will set the tone for future success.
- Tell your kids ahead of time how to respond to distractions.
, Most importantly, you should persevere! Yes, even when the interruptions are so frequent and extreme they start to dampen your spirit. This may mean that on that day, you put it all away…and that is ok! BUT persevering means that you begin again tomorrow and try again. A peaceful Morning Time takes practice.
#6 Adjust Your Attitude
No matter how your morning starts out, you can influence the whole atmosphere of your home by having a positive attitude. Smile at your children. Have a genuine interest in learning. As moms, we can easily forget how blessed we are to be able to spend so much time with our kids. Remind yourself of all the benefits you have through homeschooling…slow mornings, one-on-one time with your children, learning together, sibling friendships, home-cooked meals. Write out a list if that helps remind you!
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#7 Don’t Forget the Secret Ingredient! (Prayer!)
If you can’t seem to have peace in your Morning Time, have you tried praying about it? Recently I read a moving story from The Hiding Place to our kids. During World War II, Corrie and her sister Betsy were arrested for hiding Jews and sent to the atrocious concentration camp at Ravensbruck. Living in Barracks 28, the women faced conditions of the most horrendous assort: lice, fleas, over crowding, hard labor, little food, poor ventilation… deplorable circumstances . As a result of these conditions, “fighting and quarrels erupted constantly.” On one particularly dismal night, Betsy clasped Corrie’s hand saying, “Lord Jesus, send your peace into this room. There has been too little praying here.”
When you struggle to have peace in your Morning Time, bring your requests to the Lord. As Betsy continued, “Where You come, Lord, the spirit of strife cannot exist.” In His presence is perfect peace, so ask Him for His help.
Other Morning Time posts to read.
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Hi, I’m Sheri! I am a Christian saved by grace, married to my high school sweetheart, and a thankful mom to ten incredible kids. I’m a former public school teacher who never thought I would someday be a homeschool mom! Drawing on 13+ years of homeschooling experience, follow along to find help for getting started, tried and true homeschooling advice, life skills learning, simple Morning Time ideas, and interviews with everyday homeschool moms just like you!