Wednesday, December 7, 2011

How To Take A Homeschooling Holiday Break


I believe in a lifestyle of learning and seek to create that atmosphere every day no matter the season, but we all need a break from the more formal look of learning and a chance to just be and dream and do whatever. I think I told you a while back that we are doing a three month on/one month off homeschooling "schedule" this year. I made sure that the "one month off" would be December! I wanted our Advent season to be filled with unstructured days to allow for baking, movies, making, playing games, decorating. As December came along though, all of our "schoolish" stuff in our dining room kept staring at me and I felt this vague sense of guilt that we weren't having structured learning.

How to remedy that?

We brought down all of our holiday decorations that are stored in big Rubbermaid bins. We emptied the bins and into those bins went anything resembling "school" :) And it was all whisked away to the attic! In place of all the books and manipulatives that lined the shelves in our dining room, we put decorations, a Christmas CDs and board games!

It truly *feels* like a vacation now. And come January I think all those school-y things will look new and interesting again. Until then, we can simply operate as a home and not a homeschool. I like that!

image credit

12 comments:

laurel said...

Great idea!! I let the older three boys stay home from school yesterday "just because". It was so nice to have them home even though it was really intense. Matt asked me if I wanted to bring them back to homeschooling in January. I'm definitely not there yet but I do hope to someday.

Pieces of Sunshine said...

Great idea Aimee, especially for those of us who school in our dining/lounge rooms!

Shelley in SC said...

Great idea, Aimee. If you can see the workbooks looking at you, it's very hard to ignore them. Hope you're having a wonderful December!!

contentedsparrow said...

i like that, too, aimee! :)

Jessie said...

Great idea! I've never heard it before now.

gotjoy3 said...

Great idea. WE are also taking December off. I had planned a 2 week break at the beginning but as December came we were just burned out like crispy toast. I could see that we needed a break. So, I decided to do the whole month. I too have been (just yesterday) anxious and guilty about this. But this is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

Sara said...

So smart! I originally intended to take the last 2 weeks of December off, but we're going to be off for 3 beginning Monday! I just felt like we really needed a long break. I'm excited and so are the kids, and now there will be more time for fun Christmasy things. I like that idea about 3 on/1 off. I need to ponder that some more. It's amazing how a break can really alter the perspective.

Susan said...

Aimee, I love the determined sweetness and smartness of this! What a great idea! :-) Happy Advent!

I love the tree picture at the top of the post, too. Recalls the simple Christmases of my childhood (they really *were* much simpler than now!) when we unceremoniously (but exuberantly) tramped out to the woods for our tree and decorated it mostly with handmade decorations. :-)

Susan

Lorilee @ Loving Simple Living.com said...

sounds awesome! I have played with different ideas for school schedules. spacing out the breaks and shortening them (so they don't forget so much) definatly sounds good.

debbie bailey said...

That's a great idea! I'm sick of looking at the two boxes full of our homeschool stuff in the dining room floor and will relegate it to the attic Friday afternoon.

Roan said...

Now that's a great idea! We are already one week into our 3 week Christmas break, but I can see how packing away the stuff would have given us some closure to the school semester...We school 160 days a year, usually beginning August 1, taking 1 day off each week, a week off in fall and spring, 3-4 weeks in December/January, and then how ever many weeks left we have in the summer (usually 8-10). I have a schoolroom, so I can just leave everything school related in there, but I am using that room as our craft center and my gift wrapping stuff is all in there too! One thing I can do, and I will do today is to pack up my oldest daughter's schoolbooks. They are in our guest room. Into the closet they will go today, and on the shelf I will put something seasonal!

Thanks for the idea. I found your blog through a google search looking for ways to simplify life! I also homeschool, and I also have 5 children.

Nice to find you!

Jennifer said...

Fabulous idea! Our school stuff is in our dining room so this would work perfectly for us.