Thursday, March 21, 2013

Working Outside the Home and Homeschooling

I missed my rays of sunshine whilst at work.

Probably the single-most question I am asked is how we home schooled during this year "abroad" while running a restaurant. This was no easy feat and I had to constantly remind myself to not try to get through the subjects but into them and enjoy the time, no matter how little, with my boys. The logistics, along with apologies if this is a bit dry:

Alternating day shift and afternoon/evening shift at the cafe' meant an alternating school regimen. On the days I was at the cafe', the boys came with me and we brought our book bags with us to the restaurant. Breakfast was ordered (yes, that was a plus) and I read our literature and poetry selections while the boys narrated - never speaking with their mouths full, of course.

Max had independent work while Luca and I had math and reading together. Max rejoined for handwriting and then we had history and geography in the restaurant's dining room where a map collection is hung. Luca then had play time and Max and I did math together. At this point, we went upstairs to an apartment we'd turned into a hotel suite and the boys were set up for free reading/drawing/handwriting/clay modeling/Liberty's Kids, etc. while I dashed down to the cafe' during the lunch rush. Mind you, this all took place while I managed the front of house of a restaurant that seats 140.

After the lunch crowd left, it was our turn to have lunch. Luca, our younger, then usually stayed with me and Max would go to the library or youth group until I was finished for the day.  We read copiously in the evenings, helping to make up for snuggle-time and "school time" lost.

On the mornings I didn't have to go into the cafe' we would spend time out of doors in rebellion of all the time spent in the restaurant. Living with five additional children in the house is joyfully noisy so we retreated to our Airstream camper for our lessons until the weather turned too cold.

"What of poetry, and hymns, and Shakespeare, and handicraft, and...and...?!" comes the outcry of those who embrace Charlotte's generous curriculum.  Aah, one of the highlights of our year was the wonderful opportunity of being a part of a real-life, fine arts Charlotte Mason homeschool co-op. That delicacy will be another post.


Sarah said...

It is truly amazing how much you can accomplish even when life if more full. I often get asked those same questions as we have a B&B. Well done, you are remarkable.

Ruby said...

I think you girls are marvellous to work it all in. I used to be very scheduled but have become a little more flexible over the years. I do not think I could manage it all the time as you have. This year will be very special for you. Did the business fold or were you only there for a period of time?

Joyfulmum said...

Wow! I only work a few hours a week from home and I've manged to work that out with homeschooling, ministry at church etc. I'm not sure how I'd go doing what you and Sarah do! Well done!

amy in peru said...

you. are. amazing.

i know all about the moving stuff.

love ya!