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Morning Baskets ~ How They Can Shape Your Day

I love finding things that can work for both the homeschooler as well as the virtual learner because, let's face it, we ALL want the very best for our kids. Morning Baskets are perfect for families no matter where they fall on the "teaching" scale. And, contrary to what the name suggests, you don't have to utilize them in the morning...which is a BIG win for those of us who are a little slower to rise, or for those who have Zoom/GoogleChat meetings at 8am!

What is a Morning Basket?

Sometimes called, "Morning Time", "Circle Time", or "Morning Meeting", Morning Baskets are simply a tool that you can use to get your whole family together to teach a common theme. I've found that by teaching History and Science as communal subjects, you can really save a lot of time and effort. For the past few years, we've used curriculum that helps us do just that. Basically, I teach all three of my kids (6th, 3rd and 1st graders) the same Science and History material, and then they each have their own journal/workbook geared towards their individual grade levels that dives deeper into the material and gives them the "meat" of the lesson. Utilizing a Morning Basket to do this has really added a lot of depth to our days.

What do you put IN a Morning Basket?

Well, the possibilities are endless, but let me walk you through what is in ours. For Science, we're studying Oceans at the moment, working through Rebecca Spooner's "Gather 'Round" curriculum. Using that Unit Study as our guide, I fill our Morning Basket with things that are related to Oceans. I have the Gather 'Round Teachers Guide, 2 Usborne books (First Encyclopedia of Seas & Oceans, and 100 Science Experiments), a Bible, "World of Oceans" by Robert Hunter, "The Seashore Book" by Charlotte Zolotow, and "This Is Not My Hat" by Jon Klassen, as well as a globe, several shells and a few coloring pages. You can add all kinds of things to your basket...maps, a compass, shark teeth, etc. The key is to add things that are interesting to your kids, that get them talking, and get them excited about whatever topic it is that you're studying.

How can this work for YOUR family?

A Morning Basket doesn't have to be used in the morning, and really, you can call it whatever you'd like! The "jist" is that it's a basket filled with things that get both you and your kids talking and learning together. Maybe you'd like to dig a little deeper into space or coding, or you'd like to do some fun things together with your children to celebrate Fall. Grab a basket, go on a quick run to the library to pick up some great books on whatever topic you choose, print a few free coloring pages, research several Bible verses that might relate, add in a 2 or 3 tangible things they can look at or feel (it can even be a YouTube video), and you're set! You can do it in the morning, at lunch during their break from school if they're online, or even at night around the dinner table if they're already back to in-person learning. It doesn't have to be fancy, it doesn't have to take a long time, and it doesn't have to be super formal. It's all about time together, learning, growing, and communicating as a family. I promise, they'll love it...and I bet you will too!



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