Jen G. of Mt. Vernon, Washington
We are an adventurous family of 5 who love to travel. My oldest (Molly) loves everything crafting and organizing. She is currently trying out for the Olympic Luge pre-trials. My younger 2 (Sam & Ben) love all things boy!!!! We all love to hike and ride bikes together. Our lifestyle is a busy one so I feel blessed to have the opportunity to teach my kids from home.
R. Montgomery of Washington State
R and Dad have 12 children from 33-5. 11 have homeschooled and number 12 starts in the fall. Some are adopted and have learning disabilities. All are geniuses. We have worked hard to find some of their areas of expertise and some we have identified more than one area of genius. Some homeschool easily, others taught me how to unschool, and others were just plain frustrating, but after much prayer and thought we figured out a plan for each of them.
Kristal of Washington State
We are a family of 5 (my husband and I), and 3 children (2 girls and a boy). Next year we will have children in 5th, 4th, and pre-K. We also have a pet cat. My husband is a history teacher and enjoys all things history, sports, and the outdoors. I am a former elementary school teacher, now full time mommy and homeschooler. I personally enjoy reading and journaling, shopping, and good one-on-one conversations with other moms. We enjoy playing a variety of sports (basketball, soccer, swimming, biking). We also enjoy camping, playing in the water, and getting out in nature.
Evangeline of Washington State
Jordan, Calvin and a baby on the way! We enjoy adventures together and eating yummy food.
How do you Timberdoodle?
Jen: I heard about Timberdoodle from friends. They didn’t steer me wrong. I get all the curriculum I need for the whole school year one 1 box. I love all the extra projects that come along with the curriculum. We have so far ordered the Kindergarten, 1st - 3rd grade boxes and 7th grade complete curriculum box. It really makes preparation for the coming year a breeze.
R: We have been purchasing products from Timberdoodle for so long I don’t remember how we learned about it. Our favorite products are Pathway Readers, Teaching Textbooks, Mathematical Reasoning, Editor in Chief, Spelling you See and a new favorite All about Reading.
Kristal: I first heard of Timberdoodle when searching for STEM ideas for my children. I felt hands-on STEM activities were always missing from other curriculums. Once I learned of Timberdoodle, I was hooked. I really enjoyed the variety of materials Timberdoodle had to offer, from reading to science, to art and STEM. I use Timberdoodle throughout our whole homeschool day. I really appreciate the guides and how they offer suggestions on how to structure your day. I plan all of our activities in my planner, based off of the guides.
Evangeline: I hadn’t heard about it until today, but I am excited to learn more!
Tell us about a typical school day at your house.
Jen: We are a family of early risers. My kids usually get up and want to eat breakfast by 6:30. I think that living in the road and being adventurous had shaped our morning habits for the better. My boys help me cook breakfast while my daughter planned her day with her handy planner. After breakfast we all get dressed for what the day may bring. We begin our scripture study and then work in school. We are currently doing math, science, reading, ASL, and an online history class. My kids all work together to do dishes and keeping their rooms cleaned but as far as chores I struggle to delegate more to them. My kids all love to cook and they all play a fundamental role in helping plan and prepare our meals.
R: We start about 9:00 a.m. and finish between noon and 2:00. Chores are part of their list which includes scriptures, piano, reading, math, spelling, writing, memorization, multiplication and exercise. Monday we do geography. Tuesday history, Wednesday art, Thursday science and Friday projects. Friday we all do scriptures and piano then they can read all day, play a math game and finish a project. We often do a field trip on Friday. My husband and I plan meals and take turns preparing. Our teenagers often help prepare and everyone helps take turn with the table and dishes. Many of our children are involved with sports, scouts, youth group and music lessons, chores are on their least busy days. Everyone helps with cleaning on Saturday.
Kristal: We wake at 7:00 a.m., breakfast by 7:30, school starts at 8:00 a.m. We begin with our morning basket (variety of books and devotionals). Then each child does their reading, math, writing and grammar. Lunch is always at noon. Then we do our group studies together of art, history, and science (though not always every day). We typically end our day at 2:00 p.m. Then everyone participates in chores. After chores the kids are welcome to free play. During the course of the week we also leave the house for PE, piano lessons, and a weekly co-op.
Evangeline: We are learning the alphabet and how to sing fun songs!
If we peeked inside your home on a random Wednesday afternoon, what would we see?
Jen: On Wednesday you would see kids at the computer or with a book in their hand or possibly stacking Math U See blocks sky high. It is quite a sight in a small space but it is fun and interactive and most days I LOVE IT.
R: Homeschooling is usually completed and some children are gone to art lessons or Cub Scouts, soccer or basketball practice. Therapist appointments are often on Wednesday afternoon. The floor would be a mess littered with school books, toys and art pads.
Kristal: Well, Wednesdays are our busy days where we leave the house. So in the afternoon you would see us just getting home. The kids would finish up any individual work that they didn't complete in the morning or in the car. I don't plan any group work on Wednesdays. If the weather is nice, we will head outside. If the weather is bad, we do lots of crafts (knitting, bead work, etc.). No formal art lessons, but any type of "art" play is welcome. Sometimes the kids also do puzzles, or quiet STEM activities (like building matierals, etc.).
Evangeline: Nap times for everyone :)
What tips do you have for surviving a hard day?
Jen: Take some quiet time for yourself to remember who you are as an individual. We all need some quiet time to reflect.
What’s something your child has done that thrilled your soul?
Jen: My kids have gone in some really difficult hikes with our family and everyone pitches in to help each other. They are learning teamwork within our family unit. What better place to start than in the home with those we love.
What’s your favorite school day lunch?
Jen: A homemade hummus platter is so yummy and quick to throw together. Add in some fruit or a smoothie for a drink and we all get a rounded meal!
What tips do you have for other families?
Jen: Being a parent we often times our so much pressure in ourselves. When life feels difficult it is usually self induced by putting too much on our plates. Step back and simplify for a short time period. It’s ok to take sick days even when no one is sick!