Breaking Away…From the Typical Day

Last month, our family experienced one of the the most enjoyable school days that we’ve had in a long time.  You may find this silly, but I had been debating as to whether or not to take some time off from our regular history schedule.  I was desiring to focus on presidents near Presidents’ Day, but the time periods just weren’t lining up with our oldest children’s history curriculum. (Can you say, ‘overly tied to the curriculum’?)   I finally decided to set the curriculum aside, prepared the needed items the night before, and broke away from our typical school day.

So, what did we do?

Our PreK child….
   – listened to a book about presidents and colored a Presidents’ Day page.

Color Sheet(Here he is telling us a little bit about what is on his coloring sheet.
He wanted so much to share like his big siblings!)

Our first grader…
   – read a few books about presidents (in general) with me.
– wrote and drew what she would like about being the president.

img_4018 (2) (Yes, that is a drawing of her standing at the podium
– a podium with a unicorn on the front. =) )

Our three oldest children (3rd, 5th, and 7th)…
     – each chose a different book to read on a president
(either George Washington or Abe Lincoln since that is what we had on hand).


(Yes, we still enjoy the YWAM books around our home!)

    – took notes on a sheet that I had prepared for them (so they were guided in what to look for and how to organize their information).

    – did a Presidents’ Day crossword puzzle (to point out and review important terms and events).

(Ahem.  He doesn’t always work in his pajamas.)

     – wrote a rough draft.

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– proofread and made corrections with some assistance from me.

– typed (or neatly recopied) their report.


    – completed a Draw Write Now drawing and copied a quote to be placed on their cover page.

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   –  orally shared their Presidential Report at dinnertime – with lots of applause and smiles.

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Yes, this was a lot of work, but it is ALL we did that day…and it was amazing!  Our kids took so much pride in their work and I genuinely feel that they learned a considerable amount.   It gave my heart joy to see my children fully engaged, interested in reading, and learning on their own.  I know that not everything can be covered in this manner and that not every day can be spent using this approach, but I came away from Presidents’ Day desiring to foster more of this type of learning for our family.

It gave my heart joy to see my children fully engaged,
interested in reading, and learning on their own.



Would you like the FREE Presidents’ Day pages that we used?
Head over to Hubbard’s Cupboard!

(Note: I’m still planning on using the George Washington and Abraham Lincoln printables with our first grader – since the time periods do line up quite nicely for her history. =)  She is looking forward to it!)

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