Homeschool Your Child in Under 1 Hour per Day

 

How can you teach your child to read, write and do math in under <1 hour per day?

The secret inside Artful Teaching. Joyful Learning.® is an integrated approach - one that folds in literacy and numeracy into everything you do. The program is rooted in a Reggio-inspired approach, and its holistic style is what makes teaching and learning so seamless, streamlined and beautiful.

This blog post and video show a typical "flow" to an ATJL homeschool day, and includes predictable, repeatable rhythms and routines to teach reading, writing and math in a way that's playful, engaging and research-based.

Morning Meeting ~ 15 minutes

Morning meeting is a practice used in most early childhood classrooms, and for good reason! It's a beautiful way to teach reading and writing in a way that doesn't require much planning or headspace. Here's how.

1. Morning Message: A daily message written to your child with a rotating bank of 5 literacy strategies. Your child...

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Homeschool Morning Meeting: the Play-Based Way

 

Early years teachers have hosted classroom morning meetings for dozens of years. Morning meetings are an opportunity to come together, share, hear stories and connect through fun rhymes, songs, poems and chants.

How might we adapt Morning Meeting in a homeschool environment? How do we keep it fun and engaging, and keep learning intentional?

When I homeschooled our youngest, I had two other children from the neighborhood who came every other day to learn with us. Each day, we met for 15-20 minutes to explore a few rhythms. This helped to take the guesswork out of planning our days, and provided a structure and rhythm for our day that became predictable. Children do best when they can depend on a predictable schedule - their brains feel safe and optimized for learning.

1. Daily Sign In

We begin each day by signing in. I offered a template for each child to print their name, and share how they were feeling.

This ritual serves a few purposes:

  1. They are practicing printing their name...
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The Problem with Copywork {and what to do instead!}

 

Do your kids cringe at the sound of copywork?

Copywork is a traditional practice amongst many homeschool families - especially those who follow a Charlotte Mason approach - where children copy pre-selected passages in their best handwriting. Usually, a piece of copywork is a short passage from a book, poem, verse that represents high quality literature.

But is this best practice for children when it comes to teaching the art of writing?

Research in the field would say no.

In the olden days, children learned to write using an apprenticeship model, copying master's works. They learned trough the process of imitation.

Today, there is a great deal of evidence to support children learning to write in much more meaningful and authentic ways.

 

According to Cynthia Puranik of Georgia State University, there are two emerging theories about how children learn to write.

The first is cognitive-linguistic theory - teaching of discrete skills needed to write. The second...

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Teach Kindergarten Math Without a Curriculum!

 

Math learning in the early years is playful, authentic and based on real-life experience. 

You don’t need a curriculum! Although it’s helpful to have a scope and sequence to map out where your child is at, and to get a glance for what to expect next, learning math in the early years can and should be integrated into everyday, real-life play and learning.

We’ve just celebrated Halloween and we have a TON of extra candy in the house.

 Why not build those into playful math experiences?

Children develop as math learners, moving from real-life concrete experiences (using manipulatives and other counting objects) to pictorial representation (pictures, tally marks etc.) to symbolic understanding.

Before they can be expected to move toward symbolic representation of addition and subtraction (ie - worksheets), they need lots and lots of experience joining and separating sets. One-to-one counting, joining and partitioning form the foundation for computation...

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The Biggest Predictor for Reading Success

 

 Many homeschool parents are eager to teach their littlest children to learn to read.

But did you know there are several FOUNDATIONAL skills your child needs to master before ever picking up a book or even learning their letters and their sounds?

In this video and article, we're talking about the FUNDAMENTAL pre-cursor to teaching reading, and it has very little to do with letters, sounds or phonics. In fact, research says this skill is the SINGLE BIGGEST PREDICTOR for future reading success.

Can you guess what It is? 

Phonemic awareness.

And in this article, I'm sharing five playful, prep-free ways you can build this skill every day, so that your child becomes a fluent, skilled reader.

What exactly is phonemic awareness?

At its very core, phonemic awareness is your chid’s ability to PLAY with language. 

Phonemic awareness is not phonics. 

Phonemic awareness is AUDITORY and does not involve letters or words in print.

It is the ability to...

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My #TeacherCrush Blog Series Vol | 02

 

You know teachers who make you want to level-up your own practice?

You soak up their every word, nuance and lesson. Their students ADORE them, their administrators RAVE about them, and every parent wishes their kid was in her class?

One of those teachers is my new-found friend, Bela Luis. Her students know her as Bela, and she shares her gifts with other teachers through workshops {where I got to see her space first-hand!}, and has been invited to share her love for Land-Based Learning at a conference in Oakland, California later this year. 

Being in her classroom is how I picture heaven for teachers. She takes environment as third teacher to a whole new level. I know you will find so much inspiration in this interview, and especially in the photos of her learning environment.

Folks, meet my friend Bela. A much-respected teacher from my own hometown, Winnipeg, Canada! 

Please share a bit about your education: your school, major/minor(s) and
graduation year, as well...

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Why I decided to start a school

From the time I can remember, I had wanted to become a teacher.

Teddy bears, Cabbage Patch Kids and Care Bears lined up in a row, seated before the giant chalkboard my dad had found at a garage sale. This was how I played every day. Even my little brother got a front row in my classroom {much to his chagrin}.

I don't know if it was my mother's influence {a well-respected teacher, now-turned-Education Consultant}, or the fact that I loved nurturing all those stuffed characters, or because I had the most  amazing Nursery School teacher who was way ahead her time; but I knew with all my heart, THIS was what I was born to do.

Upon graduating from University with my Bachelor's of Education {and a major in Art}, I set about finding a job teaching Art at the Elementary level {my wheelhouse}. There was no such role at the time. High school art teachers were a plenty, but in the Early Years, where I knew I wanted to be, this was an untapped, unprecedented idea.

So, I happily accepted...

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