I really enjoy our homeschool co-op days. We have them once a month and they are a great time of friendship and activity. We try and arrive 1/2 hour earlier than our activities start so we can catch up with each other. Though we plan how long each activity takes we really go with the flow. The idea is that we are just a bunch of families getting together for a fun day – we are not a programme.
We have 1/2 hour of Character Lesson. When we started our co-op most of us was using Character First in our own families and we felt that our kids would benefit from knowing that values and acting on those values was important in other families as well. Since we’ve been going for so many years we are now seeing that this time slot is actually the thing that sets the tone for the group – beyond just this 1/2 hour activity. We start off together and introduce a character trait then we divide into three age groups to work on what this looks like in our own life.
We stay in those three age based groups then for 1/2 hour of Oral. This looks a bit different for each age group with the youngest doing more like a “show ‘n tell” and the older giving a speech, report or telling a story. The idea though we can work on our kids oral presentations at home it is motivating to prepare something for others – and it is inspiring to hear how others do it.
Then we have morning tea and a free play time. Free play for mums (and dads) too as it is important that we catch up with each other as well.
Then we have 1 hour of activity. Sometimes this activity is age based but most times it is integrated or the older help the younger. Once again we try and keep a family atmosphere to our day. During most of the year we have our co-op outdoors at one of the local parks. But once the season changes and we need airconditioning we head indoors. So this month we had a board games time at our place.
We finished our time with more free play – and this time they ran under the sprinklers!
A fun time for all.