With a name like Preschoolers and Peace, one would figure that a book called Circle Time: Plan the Best part of Your Homeschool Day! would be for, well, preschoolers. Seriously, the only time I’d ever heard about Circle Time was in conjunction with very young children. But then the review crew leaders said this eBook was for all ages. Well, color me intrigued.
Circle Time by Kendra Fletcher is a quick read at only 33 pages, but the pondering you will do takes a bit longer. This is one of those gems I wish I had read when I first started homeschooling. This book is for parents with kids of any and all ages. It works for one child or a dozen.
What will you find? Ideas for setting up a circle time, tips on making circle time flow more smoothly, and ways to get your kids, even older ones, to cooperate. Plus there are questions and words of wisdom from other moms, resources, activities, and ideas to choose from (or to spark your own ideas), and printables to make planning simple. It even has a wonderful checklist. I. Love. Checklists.
The first thing I did was sit down with my iPad, and dive into the book. Like I said before, it’s a fairly quick ready, but it inspires you to think of the possibilities for your own family circle time. I decided to NOT call ours Circle Time. Although, I must admit, it reminded me of circling the wagons. Such a good family metaphor, don’t you think?
Anywho, Kendra mentioned changing the name to not make your older kids balk. I agree. And I like being unique. So I looked up the word for time in ancient Greek, and found Kairos. It doesn’t refer to chronological time, but rather “the right or opportune moment (the supreme moment); a time between, a moment of indeterminate time in which something special happens.” In the New Testament it means, “the appointed time in the purpose of God; the time when God acts”. Thank you, Wikipedia. Don’t you love this?
We’ve set up three Kairos in our day. In the early morning, we have our faith based Kairos which is a time for memory verses, learning/singing praise, worship and other Christian songs, and prayer. How much we do depends on how our morning is going or what plans the day holds, but at the very least, we like to pray together. Once my hubby’s schedule stabilizes, we can include him in the prayer portion before he heads to work.
Our afternoon Kairos will be more traditional where we capture those extra educational things that might get set aside: art study, poetry, Spanish practice, read alouds, math drills, states and capitals, etc. This will vary from day to day, week to week, but it is always those subjects we can do together. It’s also a great time to come back together after lunch and morning individual studies; a great transition into our afternoon productive free time pursuits.
Finally, we have our family Kairos which is our Bible study time in the evenings with daddy. Typically, we read a chapter in the Bible (everyone reads some), and then discuss what we’ve read and how it might apply to our lives. Then we end with prayer–each taking a turn to say something. This is our preferred method, but occasionally, we might do a short study such as the one I recently reviewed.
If we skip a Kairos, I hear about it! All of my kids enjoy these times together. It’s fast becoming a special part of our day, and such a neat way to be more grounded in our faith, draw closer together, and catch those extras that can easily be neglected.
I love that we were able to take Kendra’s ideas, and make them our own. There are still things from her huge smorgasbord of ideas that I’d like to add. Some things compliment our two faith based Kairos, while the others work well in our more fluid, changeable afternoon Kairos.
All I can say is thank you, Kendra for writing this book. We may have been doing something similar to this from time to time, but this eBook helped us build upon and better define those times. Plus, we have an awesomely cool name for it now. With a radical meaning.
So how much will you have to spend on this gem? Circle Time is just $4.99 for a power packed little book. Seriously, if you aren’t doing something like this already, this little PDF will bring about some neat family times your way. Already having your own circle time? You just might find a few new ideas. She really put a lot in here. Plus, she has a page with resources for your own circle time.
Kendra’s blog, Preschoolers and Peace is not just for mothers of preschoolers. She has eight kids, and writes about topics that apply to a variety of ages. I haven’t read much yet, but check out her post called The Flyswatter, The Elephant, and The Orthodontist. I can so relate. Sigh. Good stuff. Poke around her site, and you will be blessed I’m sure.