"We Play. A Lot."

Typical days around here vary so much. For the most part, anyone coming here for a day or a week to see how and what my children are learning, would probably say nothing. All they do is play. Excluding of course those of you on this list. Even Tara is amazed what they know because as she puts it, they never really "do" anything.

My kids usually get up one at a time. Joseph (8) Sierra (7) and Alyssa (2) all have different times of waking and one never knows who will be up first. Sometimes one or all of them will come and snuggle with me in bed. Sometimes one or all of them will head to my mom's and hang out with her. (She has an attached MIL apt.) Sometimes one or all will turn on the tv and not see anyone else, or just start to play a movie from the night before that they didn't finish. (meaning act out with their toys) or just start drawing. My kids are usually up for an hour before they ask for food. They usually all eat at the same time.

If we are staying in for the day, the play goes from there. It varies in activity and time spent on each one. Sometimes it's all short and moves quickly from one thing to another and sometimes they literally may spend hours doing somthing. It's tv, reading, either to themselves or to Alyssa. They play on the computer, lately a lot. They found this thing on postopia where it asks questions and then you have to fill in the right letters to spell the answer. I'm amazed at how well Sierra spells. Gameboy and Playstation have been set aside for quite awhile now. Sometimes they play board games, either with me or my mom or just with the two of them. Joseph was taking great pleasure in watching Price is Right with my mom, although he hasn't in the past few days. He loves shows like that and is really good in math, all in his head. Sierra loves the Animal Planet channel. Joseph doesn't like it much and usually heads to his room when Sierra has it on in the playroom. Joseph draws a lot and spends a big portion of his days lately drawing elaborate pictures. Right now it seems to be city scenes. Sierra will join along sometimes and then there is also paints that come out and play dough or creepy crawlers. About two weeks ago, the play dough was out every day for a week. All three kids played with that.

Sierra and Joseph will take turns playing with Alyssa sometimes and sometimes the 3 of them will all play together. It's with dinosaurs or horses or Polly Pockets or Barbies. Sometimes just links, marbles and balls. There is an awful lot to choose from here for them to play with. Sometimes they help cook or bake. Sometimes they are outside in the back yard, playing ball or just swinging or hunting rocks. Lately they like an evening walk searching for snail shells. We have tons of them now. They have also been hanging out with Tara (17) in her room and with her boyfriend when he's over (every night!) Sierra and Alyssa spend the most time in there with them. They play games or watch tv together. Evenings they do different things with Joe when he's home. Usually games and computer stuff. Although Joe is knows to chasing them all around the house playing monster too!!! There's food and cleaning up and showers in between all this too. Never at any certain time. The children's hours are from about 10:00-11:00 a.m. until 11:30 or 12:00. Joseph usually stays up later. Sometimes with me until 2:00.

Sometimes the closest thing to seeing learning by school terms is that some encyclopedia's are missing and in Joseph's room. Some days seem more educational with the kids asking questions that we look into instead of just me answering. Those days aren't too often lately. No major research has been going on here for awhile. Doesn't bother any of us in the least. We play. A lot. And most people would say that's all we do. We're a happy family.

Mary B

Other typical unschooling days