Today was the first day of autumn term 2016. We’re entering our 4th year of homeschooling, and you’d think we have the routine down pat by now. Wrong! My alarm failed to go off because I didn’t actually set it; luckily, I automatically woke up anyway. Everything was sliding downhill from there… but, fortunately, I’d spent most of summer break prepping my curriculum so I just had to play with the timescale and aim to finish later than expected.

Just for fun, we did a Student Interest Survey to find out exactly what the kids were hoping to focus on. We followed up with an All About Me Selfie writing exercise because, you know, iPhones are cool. Word searches are a big hit here, so I had a Back to School Word Search prepped as an early finisher activity. However, I also had a few minutes to trial an ongoing early finisher Mindfulness Colouring book. It’s really meant to be printed as A4 sheets but I printed it double-sided A5 size and turned it into a booklet with my long arm stapler. Not entirely sure how well it was received.

After a short break, we read the first chapter of Dinosaurs Before Dark*, after completing the K&W of a Dinosaur KWL chart. (I’m really taken with the Magic Tree House books and plan on using two of them as class readers this term.) I found a cute Dinosaurs Before Dark packet on TeachersPayTeachers, which has differentiated comprehension questions.

Finally, did 2 pages from our Science workbooks, and I set some spelling words as homework. As it’s the first week back, I gave them a measly 6 words each from the 2nd 100 and 3rd 100 Fry Words lists. If they manage them easily, I’ll up the number of words and/or move them up a list. Spelling has always been considered a real chore but the new dinosaur themed spelling books and a simpler set of spelling words will, hopefully, get them more enthused about spelling practice!

It wasn’t a perfect day but it wasn’t the worst day ever. Tomorrow, I’m aiming to wake up even earlier, and squeeze in the individual reading time that I cut from the start of today.