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Do you ever feel like you are having to push to get school started in the mornings?
I am not a morning person. My kids aren’t really morning people either! We aren’t up when the sun rises and I have a hard time getting up before the kids do. Once we are all awake it takes us awhile to get moving and to get started in our school day. With 4 kids a wide variety of ages and grades it can be difficult to get us all situated and starting school at the same time.
A few years ago when I had a nursing baby I accidentally stumbled upon something that really worked for us! I found that when everyone was either eating breakfast or had just finished breakfast that my little one wanted to nurse. She really liked to nurse long in the mornings so I found myself sitting for a lot longer than I wanted to. This turned out to be a blessing. Since we couldn’t immediately jump up and start school and send everyone off to their independent work, we started doing things together at the kitchen table, sometimes before breakfast was even cleaned up. We call this Morning Table Time.
What exactly is “Morning Table Time”?
It can be anything that works for you and your family! Do you do daily devotions or scripture memory? This can be done during this time. Vocabulary words, spelling lists, flash cards etc… They can all be done together around the table. The sky is the limit with what you choose to work on.
What we do:
My kids usually eat a quick and easy breakfast from our Breakfast Station. They are eating while I do my quiet time and get ready for the day.
After breakfast, everyone fills their water bottles up for the day and goes back to the kitchen table. Sometimes they are still finishing breakfast up or they are sitting and drawing or coloring. They know they need to wait for me. I get my coffee and grab our Morning Time Basket and sit down at the table to begin our morning.
This basket contains everything that we use in the morning. It is pretty and functional!
We start off with Bible time. We do prayer requests and go around the table and everyone picks something to pray for; a family member, a friend, our country etc… Then we work on our memory verse. I like to pick small passages at a time for us to work on together. I type up the passage and put it in a 3 ring binder in a page protector. We work on one verse at a time. Once we master one verse I mark a check next to it with a dry erase marker and we continue on until we have the entire passage memorized. It is so sweet to listen to your children pray and recite scripture and it really does get the day off to a great start!
I read to them from a few different things throughout the week. We use Apologia’s Who is God and Can I Really Know Him? We do this 3 times a week. The other 2 days we read one of the Miller Family Devotional Stories. My children just adore the stories and they are so applicable!
If it hasn’t gotten too late into the morning I like to use this time to read from a family read aloud. My oldest takes turns reading as well. Sometimes I have him read while I clean the kitchen up real quick since we are already in the dining room by the kitchen I can see and hear what is going on and am still right there. During the read aloud the younger girls will usually color or draw while they are listening.
When we are done I already have my daughters at the table so they pull out their school work and get their pencils sharpened and get everything out that they need. This is when my 10th grader escapes to the other room to start school quietly on his own and I get my 3 year old set up with some quiet play time toys.
Having everyone at the table together first thing in the morning has been such a blessing for our family. I have four kids ages 15, 9, 7 and 3 and it’s hard to get them all together because they are always working on separate things. Our morning table time is a sweet time for us to gently wake up and connect with God and one another before we officially start our day. It doesn’t matter that their ages vary so much. My oldest enjoys this time and has never complained about having to sit with his little sisters. I think he secretly enjoys being read aloud to like when he was little and he enjoys helping me by leading in prayer and reading out loud to them.
If you don’t normally do something like this I encourage you to try something like it that fits for your own family!
Do you have a morning routine that helps you get a sweet start to your day? We’d love to hear about it!