YMB #122 Top Priorities for Morning Time with Teens

We’ve talked a few times on the podcast about how to do Morning Time with your teens, but this episode really hones in on the idea of what do you prioritize when it comes to Morning Time and the teenage years. How do you make it worth their time and energy, how does it change as they get older, and even how do you award credits for what you are doing.

Links and resources from today’s show:

Cycle Savvy: The Smart Teen's Guide to the Mysteries of Her BodyPinCycle Savvy: The Smart Teen’s Guide to the Mysteries of Her Bodyhttps://iew.com/shop/products/linguistic-development-through-poetry-memorization-teachers-manual-cdsPinhttps://iew.com/shop/products/linguistic-development-through-poetry-memorization-teachers-manual-cdsOurselves (The Home Education Series)PinOurselves (The Home Education Series)


Pam: It’s the same, only more it’s like deeper and fuller. And I was a secondary ed major. I’ve always liked teenagers. Like teaching phonics. We teach phonics so we can have something to talk about. Right. I was always excited about getting to the point where we have these big meaty things to discuss. And now we get to have those discussions.
This is Your Morning Basket, where we help you bring truth, goodness, and beauty to your homeschool day. Hi everyone. And welcome to episode 122 of the Your Morning Basket podcast. I’m Pam Barnhill, your host, and I’m so happy that you are joining me here today. We’ll on today’s episode of the podcast. We’re going to be talking about what to prioritize when you are doing Morning Time with teens.
Now there’ve actually been a couple of different times on the show and we’ll link to them in the show notes where we’ve kind of talked about the nuts and bolts of why to do Morning Time with your teens, or even how to do Morning Time with your teens. How does it look different when you’re doing Morning Time with teen teens versus doing Morning Time with little kids.
But what we wanted to do today was kind of touch on. If you’re going to be doing Morning Time with teens, what are some of the things that you might prioritize? Now, we really want to emphasize that this is going to look so different for all of the different families that are out there. My guest today is Dawn Garrett, who is the community manager at Your Morning Basket and she has three teens. I have three kids who are a little bit spread farther apart in age. My youngest will just be a teen this year. Whereas my oldest is 17. Dawn’s are closer together. Hers range in age from 15 to 17, we’ve both been doing Morning Time for a long time. And we both have continued to do what people would call fairly substantial Morning Time with our teenagers.

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My Morning Time last, anywhere from around 45 minutes to an hour and 15 minutes, usually hitting it right about an hour. And Dawn's is about that long as well. And so people ask us, how do you do that? When you have teens who have so many other things that they have to do now, the wonderful thing about the conversation is Dawn is…they have a very much more academic and I would say rigorous though. Dawn would probably not use that word that compared to us, they do kind of program going on in their high school, their high schoolers read very meaty books and attend a lot of online classes. Whereas we are much more relaxed in our approach to homeschooling around here. And so getting to see a little bit from different aspects, I think is a good thing.
So Dawn's coming on to talk with me today about how do you prioritize what you put in Morning Time with your teenagers and what do you prioritize? Why do you prioritize Morning Time with teenagers? So I think you're going to enjoy the conversation. Now, if you are looking for something to do in your Morning Time, even with your teens, come check out the Morning Time plans Pambarnhill.com. We have a few different sets over there. That can be a great supplement to Morning Time for your teens. Like our history Morning Time plans. Our seasonal Morning Time plans have truth, goodness, and beauty in there. If you leave off the picture books and just do the art appreciation music appreciation and read some of the poetry together,
that's perfect for teenagers. And then also some of our literature based plans, like the Hobbit are absolutely perfect for teenagers as well. So just because you have teens doesn't mean you shouldn't come and check out our ready-made Morning Time plans pambarnhill.com. And now on with the podcast.
Hey there, Dawn Garrett, how are you doing today?
I'm doing really well while we're still on summer break. So it's very quiet here. And my youngest she's 15. She is at grandma's house for part of this week and she's my talker.
Okay. Oh, yes, yes, yes. She is actually. We met. It's a very quiet here this week. That's funny.
Okay. So we want to let you guys know we are actually recording this August 1st. So if you're listening to this, I can't remember when this would air. I think sometime it's September Dawn is not still on summer break. We are both busy homeschool moms. And so we actually, people always ask like, how do you get all this stuff done? We bulk, like we do things in bulk. We batch it, you know? And so right now we're working while we're on summer break so that all of this stuff will be ready, be ready in the fall.
My first summer break ever. That's right? Because you have never, you've always schooled year round, starting your year in December and, and then not really taking a summer break. So tell everybody, cause this is kind of relevant to what we're talking about today. Tell everybody why you decided for the first time ever to take a summer break.
Well, we've always had Morning Time that has always been like the cornerstone of our day, year round. And so in the last few years with all high schoolers, they've needed some online courses for things that I cannot provide foreign language, higher math, those kinds of things. And those have kind of overtaken our schedule. So our cornerstone of Morning Time in the summer has not been, it's been a little bit weird to have that, not have that anchor even with us, you know, our minimum viable day. Yeah.
But we've taken the whole summer off. My oldest is going to be a senior year this year and she has some online classes. And so that they get their breaks when their classes have breaks. And not just when I have breaks, we just said, we'll go to a traditional school year, this for these last three years of homeschooling.
Yeah. And I think that's, yeah, that's important. You know, you were able to keep it up for as, as long as you did, but then when, when you started leaning into those online classes as a large part of their day, it was good to give them, give them that option because your kids really weren't getting a break because the times you were breaking, they were still having to do class.
That's right. Yes. And arrest is really important for learning. There's a lot of work, work, work, but your mind really works on things when you have a rest. And if they weren't getting any breaks at all, they weren't getting any, they weren't giving their minds a chance to kind of like suck the marrow out of the learning. Right? They weren't, they weren't getting the time for that quiet work of their brain without like a lot of input. So it was really important that we had the summer off and it's been honestly really delightful, although a little unanchored.
Well, yeah. And so our big problem this summer has been, they've been so busy. You know. And so honestly, Olivia told me last week, she's like, I'm really looking forward to starting school because I wanted to get back to normal where it almost feels like the school year is a break from the summer. So they, you know, they've gone to camps, they've helped with VBS. They've, you know, done all the things. And actually this week, Olivia is at cybersecurity camp and we're starting school next week. And I have a feeling she's going to be like very tired and like, why are we having to start school? I just went to camp and I'm like, I can't help that. We have to get started.
We have a couple more weeks before we start, but it's going to definitely be a slow start in.
Yeah. Yeah. And, and we will too. We'll start a little bit slower. Tell me how old your kids are for everybody who's listening. How old are your kids? My youngest turned 15 in June. She is a rising sophomore. My middle, my son is 16 and a half. I guess he is a rising junior and incredibly busy. And my oldest is 17. She'll be 18 in October. And she’s a senior I know like It's honestly both really exciting and really terrifying all at the same time.
Yeah. Yeah. It really is. And I'm like, ah, you know, can you just want to stay into another year? That's almost what I feel like sometimes, but we'll, we'll just see how it goes. We'll see what happens. And so me the same way I've got, I've got a senior this year for the first time ever. And then I've got a sophomore and then my final one, he's going to be 13 in the fall. So not as old, not quite as old, I've got a little bit longer to go, but yeah. So coming up on having a house full of teenagers.
So let's talk a little bit about some of the joys of doing Morning Time with teenagers because moms with little kids are probably like, wondering how is this going to change? What's going to be different and how is it going to change?
What is going to be different? What are you, what are you enjoying? We do real theology and we do poetry at a different kind of a level where we're talking about the ideas. And I mean, my kids have always discussed stuff with me, but now we're like discussing like real meaty stuff. My kids can really lead parts of Morning Time.
It's not all my voice all the time. They participate in the, you know, the reading, this portion of this particular book, my son accompanies on the keyboard when we sing, which is honestly so helpful. Cause I can't carry a tune, but the piano that makes the world of difference. I mean, it's, it's the same only more it's like deeper and fuller.
And I was, I was a secondary ed major. I've always liked teenagers. I like teaching phonics. We teach phonics so we can have something to talk about. Right? Like I was always excited about getting to the point where we have these big meaty things to discuss and now we get to have those discussions.
Yeah. I think for me that's, that's it too. That's the most joyful thing is that the conversations that we have, it's, it's two way it's, it's good stuff. It's, it's enjoyable, delightful. They have a wonderful sense of humor, you know? So it's the great conversations that we're having that come out of the Morning Time material and the things we get to share together.
And just kind of like, I can remember last year reading something in a book and my daughter just given me this look like, and like we're all on the same wavelength. We're thinking exactly the same thing. And so yeah, I do. I think that is my very favorite thing too that. You just, as enjoyable as morning, time was doing with little kids, you just didn't have it. You know?
And when it was all little kids, I was doing all of the reading aloud and then we would do narrations. You know, we did lots of Madlibs, which are fun to a point, but Madlibs in with high schoolers are actually so much better, better than Madlibs with all of the bathroom humor, like their vocabulary just blossoms. And they're excited to use these big ridiculous words. And it's, it's, it's more fun.
Makes it more fun. Yeah. Okay. So let's not paint this rosy picture that there are no challenges. So what are some of the challenges of doing Morning Time with teenagers?
Well, I used to have a lovely hour and a half to two hour Morning Time where we got to do all kinds of things that I wanted to do and they just don't have time for that.
So we've cut it back to an hour and I try to stick really tightly to that hour. And that makes me sad because that is, they do so much independent study in high school. I mean, they still come to me for some things, but that is really my biggest interaction with my kids in the day with all of us together. And so having to give up that time and really limit it, that's really hard for me.
Yeah. Yeah. I think for me, it's the, it's a lot of times it's the attitudes, so there's grumpiness. And I think little kids have that too, but they can, I think, I don't know. My little kids were way more joyful in Morning Time. Now it's a, I won't say it's begrudging because that's not the feeling at all because in the end they will tell you like when it comes right down to it and, and they're, they're not, you know, when you catch them in a moment when they're not sleepy, they're not annoyed with a sibling. They're not something like that. They will tell you that they do enjoy Morning Time. But so often it's the getting up. It's the being grumpy. It's the, you know, the hairy lumpy bodies laying on your couch while you're trying to read to them and stuff like that. That, that to me, I think is the challenge right there.
It’s the constant, constant starvation, like I ate five minutes ago and just like needing more food right now.
Yeah. Oh yeah. I've had a point in time in my Morning Time where like all three of them got up at separate times and like wandered away. And so I'm still sitting there in the living room, reading the book and two of them are in the kitchen getting snacks. And one of them is heading towards the bathroom and I just kind of stop. And I hear this voice from the kitchen, keep reading, we can hear you. And I'm like, oh, oh, you know.
You can hear me, but it's not the same. It's Not the same. It's like, what'd you just get in here until we can finish, you know?
Yeah. And don't get me wrong. My kids sometimes have the attitudes too. And they don't, they their attitudes for quite a while where it's, we're just spending too much time here. So that was, that was part of why we cut it back because they really did insist. But I mean, there are days when they're like, oh, do we have to do this? We would rather sleep. And for sure, I get that, but yes, we have to do this. And then we're all glad that we've done it because it does kind of prime the pump for the day.
It gets, it gets the, like the mental juices just go in just enough to, to get going. And like I was talking about earlier, it's it really is that anchor, that foundational piece to our whole day.
Yeah. Yeah. And I think it's like, it's, it's sometimes I think for them, it's kind of like exercise. Like you don't always want to do it, but you're always happy. You did do it. You know,
You are, you really are. So yes. But yeah, it's, it's, it's kind of like that sometimes. So I think that that for us is the biggest, the biggest challenge.
So what let's talk about that you've mentioned, you've alluded a couple of times to the fact that you used to do a much longer time and now a much longer Morning Time, and now it's shorter. So how, when you started making it shorter, when your teens said, we really need this to be more compact, how did you narrow down to the most important things to focus with?
So a big section of our Morning Time was reading books that I wanted to read. Or that I wanted to have read, like I wanted the kids to have read them.
Yeah. So like we had a book on Ohio heroes where in Ohio, they have to have Ohio history. And it was an interesting book and I really was enjoying it. We were working on a book about the constitution and how it was developed and what's in it and you know, how it's put together. And I thought that was a pretty important thing. And we, we did just about finished that one.
We were reading a book called Cycle Savvy, which was about women's cycles during Morning Time. Cause I had all teenagers and my girls could certainly hear and need that kind of information. And my boy is likely to have a wife someday and she would appreciate that he has that knowledge.
She really will! All the moms listening to now there are nodding, the men are horrified, but yeah. She will.
And you know, and it's awkward to read that kind of book aloud and it's awkward to have that book read aloud to you, but it really shouldn't be. So I was trying to kind of break some of those stereotypes and some of the, some of that discomfort. So I was reading aloud books that I, that I wasn't going to assign to my kids, but that I thought were valuable for our time. And so those are, those are probably the things that I cut back. I wanted to keep all of the Bible catechism theology stuff we were doing that was that's. You know, that really is the anchor of our anchor. That's the heaviest part, the most important part of my morning, time singing, hymns, those things. I wanted to keep the poetry because we've been working on this poetry books since Margaret was three. And so
What level are you on now? Four. Okay. End of three. I don't remember exactly.
We're only on two Heather Tully, who is a good friend of both of ours. She's like mine have to do the last poem before they graduate. I'm like, my kids would never graduate.
Yeah. We're not gonna make it to the last poem, which I'm fine with. We might start like skipping to some different ones this year in the Linguistic Development Through Poetry Memorization, we might start skipping to some of the more famous ones. We, I don't remember what we were working on because we haven't done Morning Time for a couple of months and I haven't looked at it yet.
So I kept the poetry and we, we read some other poetry just to read it because I think that's important. And we do Shakespeare and Plutarch. And as Charlotte Mason people, we do our, you know, this is, this is when we do folk songs and picture study and composer study. And those don't take very long, but that's just like giving them weights so that we don't forget about them or lose track of them in our day.
Right. And it's just easier to do them together if you're going to be quite frankly
And more enjoyable.
Yeah. Yeah. It really is. It really is. So what about personal interests? Do your kids' personal interest ever play a role in the choices that you make for your Morning Time?
I love it. And apologetic.
No, no. We're getting, we're getting what I have determined are the most important things that they wouldn't necessarily choose to focus on. So I mean, they do their own Bible reading, but we do we're in the reform tradition. So we're reading some Calvin, we read Charlotte Mason's Ourselves was so we're doing things that like philosophically, I think are really important and putting them together and keeping it short and sweet and getting through it together makes it great for my kids.
But it's not, it's not where we're really focusing on for their, for their interests. I try to do that with, you know, their regular curriculum. What foreign language do they want, where do they think they're going? So what other classes are or books, should they be reading? Ambleside Online is very much designed to tailor the main curriculum.
So I keep a, I keep a pretty firm grasp on what Morning Time is.
Yeah, I would say that for us, the interest impact it more in, so we always do some of our history reading and Morning Time. And then the history is typically based on an interest. So two years ago it was ancient stuff. It was ancient Greek and Roman history. We were, it was actually part of a larger mythology study was really what it was. So it was very light on history, really heavy on, on mythology, but there was a little history thrown in there that was done in Morning Time. And then last year it was the American Revolutionary Period that was based on a desire to study that period due to the musical Hamilton.
Of course, yes.
And then this year they've asked to kind of continue and see what happened after that. And so we're moving into the modern period. And so there will be history readings based on the modern period and that'll happen during Morning Time. But as far as like the…oh, now they did ask. So apparently it was a thing this summer at camp that they were introduced to Lectio Divina.
Now they've asked to be able to do that some in morning school as well. So yeah, I thought that we would pull, you know, do some of that together and they were telling me exactly how they structured it and did it at camp. And so I'll probably use that same structure. I can talk to some of the adults that they went to camp with to kind of get a good feel on exactly how they did it.
So I can kind of carry that, carry that on. So we'll probably do that with like the Sunday readings or something of that nature. And so, yeah, I guess in a way it kind of does, but most of the time, most of the time, I'm picking the stuff, you know, we give the same Linguistic Development Through Poetry Memorization, and we just move on to the next poem. And, and those kinds of things.
I will say that we may be working on these things, but my daughter is often painting and the other daughter is doing some sort of a handicraft because she likes to do crafty things. And my son is like figuring out chess things. And sometimes two of them will play a game of chess while we're doing Morning Time. I mean, so, so I suppose their interests come in in that way that they can bring their work to do or their, their hobbies to do while, while we're doing this work, as long as they're participating in the work.
Well. Okay. So that brings up a good question that moms might have is what is appropriate for them to do in Morning Time, while they're listening to you read or taking turns reading, or are practicing poetry, memorization, or singing hymns, like what's appropriate for them to do. How can you be sure they're paying attention. So what do you have a kind of a rule in your house? Cause I have a guideline that I use and that I tell moms to use.
Well, they have to read when I asked them to read and they have to narrate and if they can't narrate the passage that we have just read and it, and it's not that I didn't understand it, so I can't narrate it, but like, I can't even tell you anything that it was about, then you need to close up your thing and be doing what we're doing, kind of a thing. So I guess those are the two main things you have to, you have to be a willing, like you have to be saying the poem while we're doing the poem. You have to be singing the hymn when we're playing the hymn. When we're doing the hymn, you have to be saying the catechism question, when we're doing the catechism question, they all have copies of the Calvin. So they're supposed to be following along with what we're reading, you know? So I mean, following along and painting sometimes gets a little messy, but it can be done. So I guess those are that's my roles.
Yeah. I think, you know what, I've what I tell people generally. And this is kind of the rule. The rule, the guideline that I use at my house is they need to be not using the same part of the brain that, and I think, I think I'm, I'm going to attribute this one to Andrew Pudewa. I think that's where I got this from kind of this idea of what can your kids do while you're reading aloud? Well, they can't be using the same part of the brain that they're using to listen to the read aloud. So if they're doing something with their hands, if they're working on a hobby, you know, something like that, then it's going to be fine. They're going to be able to hear the words and, and kind of like internalize them and be able to narrate back and all of that kind of stuff.
Whereas if they're, if they're reading a different book while you're reading to them, that's not going to work because they're using the same kind of part of the brain. And, and probably the same with mathematics handwriting, if it's just handwriting practice or lettering of some kind, they could probably do it. But if they're trying to like, get really in depth with copywork or something, maybe not. So that's kind of, my rule of thumb is like, let's, let's keep it to a different part of the brain. So you can't be reading your own book while I'm reading to you, Right?
Yeah. Embroidery has been a good one for Rebecca. She likes to do that or, or a cross stitch or something sometimes. So yeah, there are, there are things that you can do and still be participating. Yeah. And historically that, that, you know, people have done that.
Yeah. I can crochet a whole blanket if somebody would just like somebody else would do the majority of the reading.
So, you know, sometimes moms worry about that Morning Time is going to take away the student's ability to spend time doing the important things. So, you know, do we really have time to do Morning Time? Should we be focusing on something else instead?
Well, I think if you put the important things in Morning Time, you're, you're in good shape. I was looking at this question. I was thinking, I know Dawn's going to have the same answer I am. And like the stuff in the Morning Time is the important stuff.
That's Right. Yeah. The rest of it is just, you know, I look at it as the difference between what's really important and what the world thinks is important.
Sure. But there isn't enough hours. There aren’t enough hours in the day. If you think about, you know, where we are compared with kids in school who are in school all day long and then have hours of homework every night and jobs and sports, you know, extracurriculars, we can, we can massage things a little bit more for them. My son did robotics last year and it was a big time commitment, but I was able to like say, okay, you're keeping Morning Time. You have online math, online German. And you know, a couple of other in music because music…
Lots of music.
Lots and lots of music for him and, and robotics. And we'll call that school for this, for this period of time, because that's, I mean, that's a pretty hefty load, but that's not forever. That's for January through March. Right. And then we can pick back up some of the other things.
Hold on a second, less lot less outline that. So if that was school at that point, and you know, because of that robotics time commitment, what was not school at that point that he would normally have been doing, You didn't have much, he didn't have a lot of the Ambleside Online readings. So not much history, not much literature. He dropped, you know, some of the books that I would typically have assigned, he would have been that he would have been working on before and after that period.
So you chose to drop those things, instead of draw, instead of saying, well, you don't have to participate, participate in Morning Time. So you could do like this history and science and still do robotics, right?
Yeah. Right. And lots of music, but I mean, theology, I mean, he is getting reading in theology. He is getting reading and poetry. I mean, so there is still, he is still getting the humanities that particularly science, heavy kids often need by keeping it in Morning Time. He just, maybe isn't getting the history, which I love. I was history ed major. That's like my first love.
And I really, I really struggled with this decision to let him drop the history, but he just had to, because I needed to look at what he needed, not what I loved.
Well, let's think about this for a minute because I know one of the questions that moms who are listening to this they're having in their head is what will, what, how, how are you doing the transcript if you've dropped that?
Well, I'm only dropping that for six to eight weeks. He's still going to have history reading. And, you know, we, we have an hour long drive for one of his lessons. And so we were listening to WEB Dubois and Booker T Washington books on our way to, and from that lesson and kind of talking about this, a discussion that they were having about education and the, for African-Americans for blacks, for freed enslaved peoples in the reconstruction early 20th century. So there's a lot of conversation going on talking about some of these. So there is some history, even though it's not like the main history spine that typically he would be reading. So, and just keeping conversations going.
So am I going to give him a full history credit? I'll probably give him a half history credit for last year and probably for this year too, but you only need so much history.
Right. Right. Okay. So that, that brings the question. Are you including the things from your Morning Time on transcripts and if so, how are you doing that? So Shakespeare, and poetry, I would wrap them up and put them and count them toward that English credit. And Plutarch probably would go toward history, government credit, honestly. And he's gonna have a Bible credit and he's gonna to have a fine arts credit for the, you know, the, well he's got lots of fine arts, honestly.
I know that's like Olivia, it's like how many fine arts credits can I give?
But so he's, but he's going to, you know, we've got composer study and artists study for four years and he's playing the piano for, and so Hymn study for four years, I'm going to give him a fine arts credit on that. Yeah.
And I, I think that's the thing too. It's looking at. I mean, part of my kids' history credit will always come from Morning Time, you know, or Olivia's, we'll at least because we've always read history and Morning Time, and I'm just not sure that the boys are, you know, it's going to change before they graduate.
So it's not for the past couple of years for my high schoolers, it's not been the entirety of their history credit, but it's been a part of their history credit, the same thing you're exactly right with the literature and in the English credit part of it does come from the work that we do in Morning Time. And then there will be some other things that, you know, get picked up and put into a credit. But I think the thing is to realize that a credit is, does not have to be from August of 2022 to may of 2023, all the work has to be completed within that one little segment. If you take all of the poetry that you've done or poetry is a horrible example, because I'd probably just attach that to the year that, you know, the English credit for the year, we did it. But if you were to take like all of the Plutarch's that you did over the course of four years, it wouldn't be enough for a civics credit for each and every year, but it would be enough for a half of a credit in civics.
Right. So you just need to be creative. How does this fit into the overall educational structure and maybe something doesn't fit like we're reading Charlotte, Mason's Ourselves in Morning Time. And it's incredibly valuable. I think for my kids to think about their education and taking over their education for themselves. And so I'm okay with some things not counting.
Yeah. I think so too. I think I'm perfectly okay with some things not counting. And that doesn't mean that they're they're any less valuable or any less good.
Sometimes they're more valuable, but Yeah, I just, I don't live life based on what counts and what doesn't.
Right. Yeah. Very much so. I agree. So how much do you think about the future when you plan your homeschool curriculum, especially your curriculum for Morning Time, you know, thinking about like college or career trade school. When I think about the future, those are not necessarily my top priorities, but how much do you think about the future?
I mean, I don't want to close any doors, So I want to make sure that I'm leaving enough, open that if they want to do trade or career center or college, or get married and start having babies, or, you know, like I don't want to close doors for them. So I want to think about when I'm planning my curriculum, I want to make sure that they have those two foreign language credits. I want to make sure that they have enough English and history and math so that they can do so if they want to go to a four year college, that door is not closed on them. But I also want to think about the child that, that, that they are, where we already said something about my son needs a lot of music. He's supposed to practice the organ two hours a day. That's a big chunk of a day. That really is. Yeah. And that's, and really they've said, that's really the minimum of what we'd like to see them do, am doing. They'd love to see him doing four hours a day. I'm like he's 16, you know? So if he thinks that he wants to do organ performance, this is the thing that we need to do. So I try to make space for him to do the things that are in his future. And I try to make space for the most important things to me. And I figured it'll all work out in the end.
And let me tell you something, or like having to tell that needs to practice piano two hours a day. That's one thing that's like In your house, in your House. Yeah. I mean, you get on the digital piano with the headphones for sure. But, you know, it's like, that's one thing, but having to practice organ multiple hours a day, that involves driving.
Every day, every Day. Yeah. And if they're not driving themselves that, you know, It, it involves so much driving that he doesn't have time to learn how to drive. Yes. So I just pour into my kids as much as I can.
I mean, I work for Pam and I homeschool and like, we homeschool a lot. Yeah. When my kids were little, the day was shorter, but our days are pretty long and pretty full these days. But I also try not to like have like five, six o'clock. Okay. You, you have to, you have to stop here and we have to have a family life. We have to have free evenings to do other things. You, you don't have homework. So that's why I put the things that I want in Morning Time.
And that's so true. And that's so true because it does, you know, and I think moms sometimes feel guilty that like, oh, we're going to do these things in Morning Time. And I feel guilty that I'm taking time away from the kids. But I think we need to stop feeling that way, because if we're putting these, these things that are so important, I mean, look at what we're doing. You know, we're, we're putting the tenants of our faith and Morning Time. We're putting our scripture reading and our prayer and our prayer together as a family in Morning Time, we're putting, you know, reading these beautiful books and having conversations together and Morning Time, if that's, what's getting pushed aside, so you can do the science textbook and do the history book, you know, maybe it's not the right choice. And I'll just go ahead and say that out loud.
Because we're children are born persons and we're persons in those conversations. And those ideas are really the things that spark, you know, they, they spark the interest in my oldest two wants to know more about the human condition. So she can go someday and maybe think about doing Christian counseling, this spark the interest of my son who, I mean, who plays the organ? I think it's wonderful, but like, Hey, would he have had the opportunity if we had filled his day with science textbooks and math textbooks, and history, textbooks and foreign language textbook and literature, I mean, do we have those opportunities to be the human that he was created? Like this, this pours out of him.
Right. And my youngest she's right now doing a mother's helper job a couple of days a week, would she have the opportunities that she has to use her gifts with small children? Because she just has them if like her day was full with homework and books and books and books. No, we, we are giving them humanity in Morning Time, like, like filling up their humanity so that they can have wide array of interests. I keep telling people when we were at GHC, I kept telling people, homeschooling high school is great. You drive in, you pay, but at least you're driving people who are interesting and interested in the world around them.
And they're interesting people. That's why I love to have Morning Time still there. There's the answer to your first question. I love having a Morning Time still because my kids are super interesting people.
Yeah. And it's, it's just great to spend time with them. It really is. Yeah. Yep. Yeah. So I think, I think that's a good place to end it. I hope if nothing else, you know, maybe, maybe there have been some tips or something that have been taken today, but if nothing else, maybe there's been a little bit of conviction that, you know, it's okay. It's okay to say this is the most important part of our day. Now sometimes convincing your teens. Maybe that's a whole different conversation altogether, but it's okay to have the conviction that this is the most important part of the day. And sometimes I think half the battle is convincing yourself and aligning your homeschool in such a way that they can see that to you it is the most important. And you're going to, like, you did let some of that other stuff go to make time for the stuff that you felt was important and the stuff they wanted to do.
Very much so. All right.
Well, Dawn, thanks so much for joining me. I really appreciate it.
I always enjoy talking with you.
And hey, if somebody wants to come and read some of what you're doing online, where can they find you? You can find me ladydusk.com or on Instagram @ladydusk.
Awesome. All right. Thanks a lot.
And there you have it. Now, if you would like links to any of the books, resources, or other podcast episodes that Dawn and I chatted about today, you can find them on the show notes for this episode of the podcast. That's a Pambarnhill.com/ymb122. Now I will be back again in a couple of weeks, I'll be talking to Heather Tully and we're going to be breaking down all the different ways that you can bring a little bit of geography studies into your Morning Time. I think you're really going to enjoy this practical episode.
So do come back and join us for that one. Until then keep seeking truth, goodness and beauty in your homeschool day.

Key Ideas about Morning Time with Teens

  • High school students often do a lot of their studies independently. Morning Time provides a great opportunity to get to know your kids better through deep, meaty conversations. 
  • Dawn allows her high school students to bring a hobby or activity of interest to the Morning Time table as long as they are participating fully the whole time. 
  • In Pam’s homeschool, students can bring something to the table during Morning Time as long as it doesn’t necessitate the same part of the brain and allows them to fully participate in Morning Time. 
  • Remember that you are in control of Morning Time. Make sure that you put the things that are most important to you into your Morning Time. And, you can often find ways to give high school credit on transcripts for a lot of it too. 
  • If Morning Time is important to you, make time for it. It’s okay to be convicted that Morning Time is worth your time, even with high schoolers. 

Find what you want to hear:

  • [3:41] catch up with Dawn Garrett
  • [9:02] discussing the joys and challenges of doing Morning Time with teens
  • [15:26] why Dawn shortened her Morning Time
  • [19:10] dealing with kids’ interests in Morning Time
  • [22:59] what’s appropriate for kids to do during Morning Time
  • [25:59] worrying about them missing out on the important things
  • [33:29] thinking ahead to the future

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Thanks for your reviews

  • Thank youPinPinPin
    by mrsbeliever from United States

    I take my walks outside two times a day. I enjoy listening to all the knowledge you have on your podcast! I am a mom of 7 and have been homeschooling for 18 years! I’m not a novice but have loved all your advice and input! Thank you for everything you do! I love it!

  • Always a favorite!PinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPin
    by Lizzie O' from United States

    Pam continues to do an amazing job with this podcast. She is a wonderful host, never hurried, asks great questions and really lets her guest share his/her experience fully. The variety of experience & wisdom here is fruit for the homeschooling community at large. I’ve been listening from day one and this podcast continues to be a top favorite. Thank you Pam!

  • Morning time will change your lifePinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPin
    by RachBoz from United States

    I’ve listened to YMB and Pam off and on for years, and she literally changed my life 7 years ago when I was just starting to homeschool. I’m so thankful for her ministry and encouragement to homeschool moms of all ages! I highly recommend doing morning time!

  • Life AffirmingPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPin
    by Logandinco66 from United States

    This podcast is amazing and has helped me so much as recovering perfectionist homeschooling mama! Pam gives so much great insight into so many aspects of life and focusing on homeschooling.

  • Life giving!PinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPin
    by lapatita5 from United States

    This podcast has been so great. It’s so practical and encouraging without being overly preachy or narrow. It gives ideas in a take-what-fits kind of way. I have used many of the recommended resources and ideas mentioned and been inspired by many others. Even the episodes that I found less relevant to me specifically, often had tidbits that I could use. Pam’s podcasts, books, and resources have been a godsend to me in my beginning years of homeschooling, helping me discover my own way to teach my kids in a way that prioritizes what is most important to us.

  • You've made my school year!PinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPinPin