A don’t use all of the Brave Writer curriculum; we just use what works for us. But I feel like the Brave Writer/Bravelearner Philosophy has given me “permission” to truly do what works for us… no matter what that is… in school and in all areas.
I have given myself permission these past few months to slow down with our homeschool and try to do things that we enjoy because I truly feel like more learning happens this way.
I have decided to keep December simple in all the ways… school, Christmas gifts, and family time.
I was going to have the kids research how Christmas is celebrated in other countries and write about it, but I decided not to do that.
Instead we will read fun (some are for smaller kids but we still read them) and good books about Christmas, read poetry (especially during Poetry Teatime), and sing Christmas carols.
We will do school by Christmas and candle light while drinking hot chocolate, hot tea, or coffee.
The only other school work that will happen is we will continue our Number the Stars Brave Writer Boomerang unit (complete with dictation and other things), math, and independent reading.
We will go on family hikes and talk about nature. We will paint about it in our watercolor books.
I want the kids to realize what Christmas is truly about (Christ, giving, and being with family) and to stop focusing on presents so much.
We decided this year to focus on experiences, so I am doing a few things:
- We are getting a membership to a museum that they love. They have a homeschool day each month, and it’s only about 15 minutes from my parents’ so we can stay there. My best friend sometimes goes to these homeschooling days as well, so that’s super fun.
- I have been working to put together a family night basket. This will include a gift card to buy movies on Amazon Prime, popcorn and fancy seasoning, other snacks, 3 games (including 2 that they have wanted for a while), and envelopes for each month with a card that has a “family bucket list” item on it. Oh, there’s also a National Parks book that we can use to help us plan a trip next year (we will be paying off all debt except student loans in February, so we will be able to take a trip!). I already have everything but the snacks for this.
- I am planning some “Hygge Stocking Stuffers” for the kids. These some things that I will be doing: LED candles and Christmas lights, a journal, Burt’s Bees chapstick, cozy socks, encouraging notes, one-on-one time coupons, and maybe a Pocket game.
We have a yearly tradition of doing activities that are in envelopes labeled with dates 1-24 in December. I love this. I printed these out when Levi was 2, so it has been a part of our family for a long time. Some of these include: driving around looking at Christmas lights, cookie baking/decorating, having a camp out in the living room, having a Polar Express night, playing a game, etc. Most of the ideas cost nothing and they are all around being together.
Sometimes it’s difficult to follow through! So I decided this year to do the best we can and make it fun and stress free.
We will also be journaling scripture each day together in the evenings as much as we can.
We will be spending Christmas time with my dad’s family (Meemaw, aunt, uncle, and cousins), my Grandma at my parents’ house, and then we’ll head to the mountains to be with Robert’s small family. We love being together! We eat, drink coffee, play games, talk, decorate cookies, sit by the fire, play in the snow, etc for days. It’s super relaxing. We love it there.
I love Christmas season and simplifying it will make us all love it even more!