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Answers to questions

My friend Jennifer asked me the following questions regarding my previous post:

I like this post. Thanks for sharing what you’ll be doing! It’s very inspiring to me! But, one question? How do you find the time to do all this? Do you stay home a lot? Does the structure help keep things mellow with the kids while you’re in your last few weeks of pregnancy? And what do you do with the girls when they get tired of or aren’t interested in what you’re doing? (I’m not quite sure how to handle that now, since I don’t want to be a "Nazi Mom" anymore!) Oh well, I guess that was more than one question! Ha, ha! Please help me!!

We do stay home a lot.  If we don’t, practically nothing gets done!  I follow the schedule listed here, to the best of our ability.  Having 5 little kids really can throw a schedule off, though!  They really need the structure and routine, and so do I.  It helps not only with the final weeks of pregnancy, but all year through.  That’s why we don’t stop "schooling" during the summer.  (But please notice that I allow for lots of free play for them, too.)

A lot of times, my 1 yo and 3 yo aren’t involved with what we’re doing.  They’re pretty good about playing alone for short periods of time.  Our morning lessons really aren’t that long.  In the schedule I allow for longer times, but doing a page of handwriting lasts about 5-10 minutes.  The dictation lasts about 3 minutes, and doing a history notebooking page about 10 minutes (unless they decide to get fancy in their drawings.)  It definitely gets more complicated when we do art, lapbooks, science experiments, etc.  My 1 yo always messes with us when we do those things!

I do a lot of reading, listening to them read aloud, and work with 4 yo on phonics when the 2 younger ones are sleeping for naptime.  (Even if the 3 yo doesn’t sleep, she has to stay in her room for naptime.)  By the way, this afternoon time (from 1:15-2:30 p.m.) takes place on my bed.  The three older kids and I sit there to read together, and then they leave for "quiet time" while I stay there to rest.  If my 4 yo doesn’t want to sit and listen to the read-alouds of history or novels, she just gets down to play in my room or the adjoining sitting room.

I’ve been pretty worthless after 2:30 in the afternoon lately, not even having the energy to fix dinner most nights.  So, I’m glad we get most of our work done before then!  Hope that answers your questions!

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