OK, I'm going to be painfully honest with you. The preschool activity stations that I envisioned my 4 and 2 year olds playing at quietly while their siblings do school haven't worked for us. Ever. Maybe it's that Queen (2) is too young (Prince does great with them, but then he's great at just being quiet when I tell him to.), or maybe she just wants to mess up whatever her brother is working on. Maybe I was expecting them to stay quiet for too long of a stretch (is 3 hours too much to ask?). Maybe it's that it's just too darn tempting to send them upstairs or outside to play. Or to nap. We love naps. Maybe I've given them the run of the house and there's no going back now.
Anyway, I was talking with my homeschooling friend Debbie about this yesterday. It's an issue all of us homeschooling moms of many face and can be discouraging at times. This morning we were off to another rocky start. While Monk (11), Twinkle Toes (10), and Measle Bug (7) were diligently, oops I forgot I said painfully honest, let's just say doing their school work, Prince (5) and Queen (2) managed to completely trash the kitchen with a Toy Story tracing kit Prince got for his birthday. Imagine markers, discs, and papers strewn about and then add to that the container of snacks Queen got into that was divided pretty equally between her table and the floor. I decided some action needed to be taken and being the mom, I was probably the one to take it. So while they cleaned up chaos central, I went upstairs to grab a basket of blocks. I moved the ottoman out of the middle of our living room to give them a place to play and encouraged them to build. (I know I can't live in a mess-free world with kids, but it makes me feel so much better when the mess is contained and easily resolved.)
They did really great. While Prince busied himself building a space station, Queen decided to make the basket into a little bed.
They may make our school days a bit more challenging, but they sure are worth it!! I can see how much Prince loves his little sister in this picture.
Oh and the basket diversion proved to be more successful than the blocks diversion. Soon Prince abandoned the blocks and joined forces with his sister.
Eventually, ok after about 15 minutes they lost interest with even the basket. Now they're sitting at the homeschool table with their siblings grabbing papers and pencils and causing general chaos. In fact, I better go find another diversion. Of course, lunch is the best diversion of all.
Honestly, what do your preschoolers do while your big kids do school? I put myself out on a limb here. Don't leave me hanging here all alone.
Now my kids are popping waterless water balloons. I really need to finish this post.
- I'm an on-the-run mom to 6 kids who studied and taught exercise science in a previous life. I love all things running, nutrition, and health-related. I usually run at zero dark thirty in the morning and am often quite hungry before, during, and after my run, but I live a rich, full, blessed life with my children, family, and friends. My faith in God is my anchor, and looking to Him and His promises allows me to live fully even when life circumstances are difficult. While running gives me an appetite, my desire is to hunger and thirst for righteousness more than for physical food.