Are you feeling the morning blues? Start your day off right with a homeschool morning basket. A morning basket is a great way to ease into the homeschool day. It can help you and your children start the day right with prayer, Bible reading, and fun times together.
I hope you enjoy reading this blog post. If you want to do my course on how to homeschool, click here.
Let’s discuss why you should create a morning basket and how you can make one yourself (including exactly what to put in it!).
And if you stick around until the end, I’ll show you what’s in my morning basket!
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What is a Homeschool Morning Basket?
A morning basket is a basket filled with homeschool items you can use for Morning Time or Circle time. Items in your basket usually include a selection of appropriate books, a group of texts you might recite daily, and time just to sit and be together.
The idea with Morning Time is that everyone is coming together simultaneously to learn the same thing. This creates more bonding and a more closely knit family. Learning like this is a really efficient use of your time as a homeschool parent.
What is Morning Time and Circle Time?
Homeschool Morning Time (also called Circle Time or Power Hour) is a time for the family to gather and do important things together, like scripture memorization, prayer, and art appreciation.
Morning time can include reading the Bible, having devotions, singing songs, and doing other important activities for the family. This is a time when the family can be together and focus on God.
But, really, you can do anything during this time. Just make sure it will fit for a group setting, and you’re good to go!
Use a Morning Basket to Ease Homeschool Mornings
If you start your day by asking students to gather their curriculum material and go off and do it by themselves, you lose the chance to gather them in the morning and start the day off right.
Instead, during Circle Time, you can pray for the day, read the Bible and other books together, memorize Bible verses together and improve your relationship with one another.
10 Benefits of Having a Morning Basket In Your Homeschool
Having a morning basket can revolutionize your homeschool and is a great move whether you have older or younger children. Some benefits of having a homeschool basket are:
- You and your children have a better opportunity to connect with each other
- Providing an opportunity for older children to help teach younger children
- Having time to discuss biblical concepts after you read the Bible
- Getting a chance to pray for your day (and other things) before it gets too crazy
- Providing a time where you can memorize important things together (like Bible verses)
- Having a place to put the homeschool items you use every day (you can grab and go!)
- Getting an opportunity to talk through difficult things happening in life or difficult concepts that have arisen
- Getting the chance to learn the same topics together which leads to further conversations later in the day
- A chance to teach all your children at the same time
- The ability to include daily lessons on topics (sometimes you don’t know when to do these things…Morning Time is it!)
Perhaps the best part about a homeschool morning basket is having that time to improve our relationships with our children and connect more closely.
This has a positive flow-on effect throughout the day as it breeds love and affection in your home, which makes your homeschool that much better again!
How to Implement a Morning Basket Routine in Your Homeschool
Find a relatively quiet time in the morning. Then, grab your children and sit together in a circle around the table or on the floor.
Grab your morning basket (isn’t it convenient to have everything in one place!), take out the items in the basket (we’ll get to these later in the article), and complete the activities in them.
You can start with:
- pray then
- read the Bible or other books, then
- do some recitation and/or memorization (learn a language, memorize Bible verses, do grammar)
- discuss art or music appreciation items
- talk about the rest of the day and what’s expected before sending children off individually
What to do with a Toddler in Tow?
If you have a toddler, breakfast is often a great time to do Morning Time. This is because you can strap your toddler into the chair with a bowl of cereal and get on with the basket of items.
This said, if you’re expecting things to be perfect, you may want to think again. Doing anything with a toddler around is less organized and sometimes a whole lot louder.
But you can slowly teach them you expect them to behave and be quiet during this time. Learning this may take weeks or even months, but it is possible to get there.
Initially, you may spend a lot of your time correcting them constantly, which is draining. But know that they will usually fall in line.
When I need my toddler to behave on special occasions, I allow them access to a special box of toys they only see on certain occasions. Circle Time is one of these occasions, and this box can help keep them quiet if they’re having a rambunctious day!
Outside Morning Time
Taking anything outside is more relaxing for toddlers. So if you have the option to do Morning Time on your deck or out in the garden, take that opportunity. Your toddler can play quietly while you get on with your morning basket!
Take a look into a preschool homeschool curriculum that can suit your family here, and perhaps you can find something fantastic to occupy your younger ones if you’re aiming Moring Time at older siblings.
If you have toddlers who like books, you could also sit them down with a stack of new books and have them read them quietly. There’s some great preschool homeschool books here if you’re after some age-appropriate titles.
Finding Homeschooling Difficult?
By the way, if you’re new to homeschooling or finding the homeschooling process quite tricky, make sure you do the Homeschool Parenting Program. This program is a blueprint to help you start your homeschool off on the best possible foot! And it’s super-affordable for every homeschool family!
How to Make a Homeschool Morning Basket
Before discussing what to include in your homeschool morning basket, you might wonder, ‘Well, do I actually need a physical basket to have morning time?‘
No, you don’t. You can use anything you like…a plastic bag, a fabric carrier, or even a bin. Or you could use a shelf near where you’ll be sitting.
You want everything together because you don’t want to have to get up, interrupt the flow of things, and go running after your morning time resources!
Let’s first chat about some morning basket essentials for homeschooling families before we look into some optional extras.
Morning Basket Essentials for Homeschool Families
In Christian families, Morning Time is usually a time for prayer and Bible Study.
Therefore, including set prayers (like the Lord’s Prayer) or spontaneous prayer time should be an essential part of your basket. During this time, we like to pray for Dad as he goes to work and pray for those around us and our homeschool day.
Include a Bible in your homeschool morning basket. We like to read a chapter or two of the Bible every morning – and Morning Circle Time is a great time to do this!
Books are also an essential morning basket item. You can spend time doing read-alouds. Each child can take a turn. Or if children are too young, parents can read to them. If you need a good homeschool booklist, this one is fantastic!
What to Include in Your Morning Basket
Your homeschool morning basket should reflect your family with its individual peculiarities. Therefore, your morning basket items will differ depending on your family’s age and their interests.
That is, you might have a lot of extended families. So perhaps in a country that doesn’t speak your language. So maybe you want to spend a part of Morning Time learning that language.
Many families also like learning a Romance language like Spanish or Latin. Latin has become a popular learning choice, especially in families that love the classical education method. (We’re learning Latin in our homeschool…why? Find out here…)
Morning basket time is a great place to learn about wonderful artistic pieces created throughout history. Older children can discuss art sculptures, paintings, or other items in detail, while younger children chime in with more straightforward observations.
Morning Time is a great time to take a closer look at fantastic musical pieces. Music appreciation and composer studies are often included in a family’s morning basket.
Some families like to study grammar together, so their homeschool morning basket often consists of a grammar curriculum. For those doing Latin, grammar and Latin are learned simultaneously (see the grammar stage of classical education).
If every child started learning poetry when they were young, we would have many more people with a deeper appreciation for the art around today.
Sometimes, many of us adults don’t like Shakespeare because we were thrown into the deep end with Shakespeare in high school.
We needed a gentle introduction to poetry to have a greater appreciation for incredible works (so often bypassed today) like John Milton’s Paradise Lost.
So, get some primary, middle… or even poetry for teens…into your homeschool morning basket.
What Age Should I Cater For?
If you have many children of different ages, it’s a good idea to aim for the upper end of the spectrum. That’s because children are surprising learners and can often understand things many grades above them. Especially when it comes to language.
Why should we aim for the upper end? It’s because younger children will eventually cycle through the material as you come back to it in future years.
If you aim circle time at a simple level, your older children won’t get much out of it (except perhaps by explaining it to younger siblings).
Younger siblings will also get something out of the time together, even if they may not have grasped everything you’ve discussed.
If you want to include your younger ones, you can try having something in the basket for younger children that’s related to the thing you’re studying and eventually send children off to do age-appropriate work (as is done in many Unit Studies).
What’s in My Homeschool Morning Basket (Example)
Do you want an example of what’s in a Morning Basket?
Let me tell you what’s in mine.
- a Bible
- a list of things we can pray
- a read-aloud book
- a grammar book (this will become a Latin grammar book in the future)
- music appreciation cards
- art appreciation cards and
- the Westminister Confession of Faith (for learning the shorter catechism)
And that’s it!
Got More Homeschool Questions?
‘What is a Morning Basket?’ is one question I see new homeschool parents always ask! To answer all your most common questions, however, I’ve put together a giant article that answers a lot of typical homeschool faqs you have (and probably some faqs you didn’t know you had!) You can check them out here.
In conclusion, a homeschool morning basket is a great way to start the day. It can help you get organized and set the tone for the day. Morning Time helps you include things that might not fit elsewhere in your day. It allows you to do daily lessons on a topic of your choice. It can also be a great way to bond with your child and spend quality time together. So, go for it, and get a morning basket! And if you’re loving this article, check out my blog for more great posts to help you on your home education journey!