Written by Jamie C. Martin of Simple Homeschool
Catch snippets of my introverted mom day in the life in real time today on Instagram!
Watch here–just look for the highlight area on my profile.
Hello, my name is Jamie and I am an introverted homeschool mom to three teens: Trishna (age 15), Jonathan (age 14), and Elijah (age 13).
In honor of my upcoming book, Introverted Mom, I wanted to share a post this year that focuses on how being an introverted mom shapes our homeschool days, and how I use that awareness to guide what we do and how we do it.
I aim to be at my bedroom desk by 7am, so I can get in 45 min-1 hour of writing time.
I usually lock my door, because interruptions make me cranky. The interruptions still come, but with a locked door I have a few seconds to calm myself before responding. It helps!
I then head to the shower to get ready for my day. During this time my teens might be sleeping, getting themselves dressed, reading, playing, doing their morning copywork, or using approved screens.
For years now, a key to my introverted mama sanity has been to read during mealtimes. This tames unnecessary chatter as well as providing a focal point for our learning!
Currently this has morphed into what we call Breakfast School (9am), and at the moment it includes: CNN10 (a new fave with my teens, plus I love that I can eat while we watch!), reading from a devotional or Christian biography (afflink), phonogram review with the Logic of English app, and then our current read-aloud.
This takes us between an hour to an hour and a half.
Afterwards I assign my oldest and youngest their chores, and my 14-year-old heads off to work on math (we LOVE Teaching Textbooks, especially now that it’s all online!) and other studies.
Currently we have a system where if a child chooses extra study time, he or she gets excused from certain household chores.
By this point (11am), I usually feel like I have earned a mini-introverted mom break! If it’s warm enough I might grab my current audiobook and earbuds and go out for a 20 minute walk. If it’s too cold, I might stay huddled under a blanket with a cup of tea and my e-reader.
Depending on the day, I can definitely get busy, start rushing, and skip this break. It’s a discipline to keep it, but I find I’m a better mom when I do.
And for those of you with littles? Check all the links at the bottom of this post to see how I fit in breaks when my kids were younger.
What are my kids doing while I’m out? It varies depending on the child, but often includes audiobooks, creative writing, Apologia Biology, assigned Sonlight readings, TJEd High, Film School for Teens, making dinner if it’s their turn, and a beautiful array of books, books, books.
One new morning activity is Elijah’s AVE/CES training, which is something we’re trying (under the guidance of a professional). It makes him look like a super-cool Star Trek superstar.
After my break I might make dinner, do a tiny bit of online work, or help a child with a project, assignment, or lesson. Recently Jonathan and I have been doing some writing coaching together, and he’s been taking several practice CLT tests–a new college entrance exam.
Drop Everything & Eat/Read:
Someone is assigned to make lunch each day and around 12:30pm we sit down to eat.
For years now we’ve done a quiet lunch where everyone reads something of their own (including me, another ideal introverted pause, yay!)
After lunch (1:15pm) we tend to focus on lessons where the kids need help.
Trishna does math on the computer and then comes to get me when she’s done with her lesson. I sit with her and together we look through the problems she missed.
I also make time for an All About Reading lesson with Elijah, who is still working toward reading fluency.
We are nearly done with Level One, preparing to begin Level Two (in color) and All About Spelling soon. We both enjoy this curriculum (no small thing since we’ve tried so many!), and it has proven successful with other kids who struggle too. We also have a math app we work on a few times a week.
Jonathan might need me in the afternoon to help with a Biology experiment, to discuss something he learned during the day, or to review his weekly checklist:
Around 3pm we officially call it quits (though learning keeps happening, of course). Unless the weather is very bad, I send the kids outside. This equals another introverted mom break for me (I aim for a 20-30 minute nap), and they need the fresh air!
Afternoons and evenings feature more of the same: walks, reading, approved computer usage, showers, dinner, and typically watching a show together in the evenings. We also fit church activities, youth group, piano lessons, and homeschool co-op into our days and weeks.
No, I don’t do it all
This is my personal routine with the kids 2-3 days a week, but no, I don’t do it all!
For the past three years we’ve had a wonderful “substitute mom” who takes my place twice a week while I head out to work and write. She makes dinner, helps with cleaning, teaches the kids Spanish, and follows our general learning routine like I would. (Yes, I know how blessed we are!)
My boys also continue to attend wilderness school one day a week, during the school year. Check out the links at the bottom of this post to see how I made life work before we had this type of help.
Why It Works as an Introverted Mom
Our schedule works well for me as an introverted mom because I find I need at least a little downtime every couple of hours. Knowing this (and accepting it) has made our days happier, especially now that the kids are older and it’s not as difficult to fit in the breaks I need.
I wish I would have come to this awareness earlier–even if I had to use screen time, I think my early years as a mother could have been easier if I could have acknowledged this truth and taken better care of myself.
And that’s why I wrote Introverted Mom–to help other fellow introverted moms take my advice and figure out how to do the same:
Any other questions about our days? Ask away and I’ll do my best to answer!
My, how the days have changed:
- 2011: My homeschool day in the life with a 5, 6, & 7-year-old
- 2012: My homeschool day in the life with a 6, 7, & 8-year-old
- 2013: My homeschool day in the life with a 7, 8, & 9-year-old
- 2014: My homeschool day in the life with a 8, 9, & 10-year-old
- 2015: My homeschool day in the life with a 9, 10, & 11-year-old
- 2016: My homeschool day in the life with a 10, 11, & 12-year-old
- 2017: My homeschool day in the life with a 11, 12, & 13-year-old
- 2018: My homeschool day in the life with a 12, 13, & 14-year-old
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