YMB #34 A More Organic Morning Time: A Conversation with Hayley Beck

Sometimes as much as we want to create an ideal Morning Time habit in our home, something stands in our way. That doesn’t mean we have to give up.

Our guest today, Hayley Beck, found that by putting aside the idea of an ideal Morning Time she was able to create something that works very well for her family. Hear all about how it works for them in this episode.

YMB34 Hayley Beck Morning Time

Pam:

This is your morning basket, where we help you bring truth, goodness, and beauty to your homeschool day. Hi everyone. And welcome to episode 34 of the, your morning basket podcast. I’m Pam Barnhill, your host, and I’m so happy that you are joining me here today. Well, we have a delightful show for you. On today’s podcast we have Hayley Beck who is a mom of six, who has come up with a very creative way to solve some of the issues that she was having revolving around morning times. She was trying to do morning time with all of her kids. Did I mention that they were all ages nine and under, and it was struggling a little bit with what that might look like in her home.

And she just got really creative with getting morning time done. And now it is a rich and beautiful part of their day. And we’re calling this one organic morning time because they kind of ebb and flow in and out of the morning time periods through their day. I’m going to let Haley tell you more about it right after this word from our sponsor.

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Haley Beck is a mother of six littles ranging in age from nine years old, down to 10 months. She homeschools using the Charlotte Mason method and the Ambleside online curriculum with a growing family and ever changing dynamics. Haley has wrestled over the years with how to make morning time work once a self-proclaimed morning, time failure. She has come to realize that some seasons of life demand of her to be okay with doing less. And that there's no such thing as a morning time failure, unless you were to give up trying altogether. She'll talk about how she pushed through the times of feeling like she just wasn't cutting it. And how morning time has been revolutionized and is 99% consistent in her home.These days, more children, more toddlers and more consistent
Haley. Welcome to the program.
It's my honor to be on your podcast, Pam, thank you so much for having me.
Oh, we just love having you here. Well, let's talk a little bit about what mourning time looks like in your house on a typical day. Do your days have a predictable rhythm?
They do. We begin after breakfast, we eat they, my two school-aged girls who are nine and seven gather their schoolbooks. And then I clean the dishes and my little ones are just kind of all for a little bit. And it takes about 10 minutes for the older ones to gather their school books. And then I call everyone to come together.
They just know that this is morning time. So I have everyone and that is everyone. That's my nine-year-old all the way down to my 10 month old. And this is what I call the first part of our morning time. We have four different elements included in this. It typically lasts about 15 to 20 minutes. I'm currently reading through the big picture story book Bible.
So I start with that. Usually sometimes if there are the energetic, I'll start without him to draw them in a little easier. And all of my children are enjoying that Bible reading at the moment, even though it's a preschool book, because it's just been a while. Since my older children have heard this read aloud to them and my younger ones, haven't really heard it read aloud as much, or at least that they can remember. We then will sing out here if we haven't already started off with that and we'll practice and learn some new questions from our catechism. And then I like to end this time with either the Lord's prayer or the American national Anthem or Australia national Anthem. And I have each of those assigned to a certain day of the week.
And it's at this time when we've finished that I let my four younger ones go my six year old may or may not take the baby. So I may have the baby with me. And then my two school aged children begin. We begin our school curriculum portion of our day. We have two or three subjects before I bring everybody back together. And this is about 30 minutes.
Everyone comes back in. So I'll mention here that I actually separate our morning time into three to four different chunks throughout our morning. And these days it is during the morning, there was a time when we did not do it in the morning. And I can talk more about that in a moment, but so I've let the little ones go. The two older girls and I we've done our Bible reading for our curriculum.
We've done a poetry reading and it's been about 20 to 25 minutes. And if the little ones that anxious to come back and join us, or, or dare I say already at each other, I let the little ones know that we're going to do French and then they'll come back. They don't have to be a part of this next part of morning time, which is our French lesson, but they all want to be. So they all are, and it always included with learning. And so our French lesson is about 15 minutes. So when that's over, I let our little ones go. And my two older girls and I continue on with two or three more subjects. So this time we may do geography then math, and it's a good 30 to 40 minutes. And this is when my, after we finished that, my older girls take a break and do some chores for about 15 minutes. And I have the little ones, my six-year-old three, four year old and three year old come and I read aloud to them. And once my older girls are done doing their chores, the littles go and play. And the older girls and I may do history and handwriting and science. And then my little one's a called back in and we learn a nursery rhyme because literally there is a nursery rhyme you can learn for every single day of the week for months and months and months. So we learn a nursery rhyme. We have a time for scripture memorization.
We have a little fun with Swedish drill, then we sing or learn a folk song. That's part of the Ambleside online rotation. And then we spent just a few minutes on poetry on memorizing a poem. Once were done the younger ones are usually now free to go and play outside. And there's still about another 40 minutes of our school day still to go.
But I'll just quickly add in that when the curriculum portion of our school day is over. So is the majority of our morning time as well. However, there's just two elements that I don't include in our morning. And that's how composers study and our artists study as I do these at lunchtime just after the children have finished eating. So when I was thinking about the answer to this question, I wondered if it was going to sound really frantic and hectic by bringing the little ones back in and out and in and out throughout the morning. And I actually want to tell you that it's quite the opposite. You see, this is where I can get into my four year struggle of how to do a morning time. That works for our family. And I'll tell you that in the middle of last year, I actually resigned myself to the fact that morning time just wasn't a fit for our family, and I just wouldn't do it. So we didn't, but I had this nagging thing going on in the back of my mind, wondering why so many families talked about it as being a natural part of their school day. And I felt this constant struggle, these incredibly depressing tension of how to make it work.
And then I started listening to your podcast and then two things came to me in the most illuminating way. One was that morning time for me was actually whatever worked that I didn't have to mimic someone else's family and two, that it was worth the struggle and the tension to figure out what was going to work because these years that I'm pouring into my children, I won't get back. And really, I was just waiting for life to not feel so hectic and for my younger ones to grow and mature. So we could just all sit calmly around the dining table and breeze through morning time without any interruptions. And I realized that if I did that, my nine year old would be graduating and will miss out on morning, time altogether. And so, as I listened to episode after episode of we all morning basket podcasts, I just realized that I wanted my children to miss and long for morning time when they had too much schoolwork, then to be able to be included in it. And by golly, I was just going to keep tying to figure out how to make it work.
Okay. I love this and I wanted to stop for a few seconds cause you've given us a lot of information and I want to kind of break it down for some of the listeners and, you know, kind of restate what I've been hearing, which you know, I love to do. So you're describing for us and we're calling this episode an organic morning time, and that doesn't mean that Haley's just like, you know, making food from scratch the surface during morning time, you're doing your kind of fitting Weavey morning time into your daily studies. And so you have periods where the entire family is together for a few minutes and you're doing these morning time type subjects with everyone. And then those little ones kind of go off and, you know, they're free to play or do something different while you're working with your girls on, you know, the girls who were old enough for more academic work. So you're working with them on some of these more academic subjects. And then after a bit, the little ones come back in again and you do another portion and they kind of, it kind of ebbs and flows honestly throughout your day.
And this is really neat because I'm sure you're describing it to us. And you're right. I wanted to make the same point that you were making. You're like, this is not as frantic as it sounds. And the point I wanted to make was you guys probably have this rhythm down to where you're not sitting there looking at a timetable or anything and saying, well, now it's time to do this. And now it's time to do this. You're probably just moving in and out of this because it's a habit born of ritual that you've repeated for a few months now. And so it is really organic for you, isn't it?
Right. So I do have everything laid out on a timetable, But that's really just a guide, you know, because we homeschool, we don't need to be a slave to the clock, but I definitely like it all laid out. And it's a guide for me to know what to do next. And for my girls who are reading, they have a clipboard and on their clipboard shows what we're doing each day. And there's a portion highlighted that shows when we're doing morning time.
So when it's for everybody and they follow along and then they also know, okay, we're going to do these two subjects and we're going to go into morning time and do the next portion of morning time.
So really we couldn't say that you do morning time. You do morning times throughout your day.
Yeah, that's true. That's true.
Okay. I just, I love this. How you've, you know, the flexibility of it. You've taken this idea that you wanted to work in your home and you're like, well, I'm not going to have anybody say to me, it has to look this one particular way. You've actually done it in a way that you've made it work. You made it work for you.
Yes, yes. Okay. So it took you a while to get into this, and I know that you have some little kids and so anytime the younger, the child the more things change.
So how often does your daily schedule or your rhythm change and what might cause you to make a change to your daily rhythm?
Well, I plan the day or I plan the week. We do it seventh schedule where we school for six weeks and take the seventh week off. And so when we're off for that seventh week, I plan our next six weeks and I plan it based on, you know, when the baby may be feeding. Now, you know, if she's starting solids, that's going to change up how the morning flows. And so I plan it out. I lay it out on paper and then when our six weeks begin, we just see how it's going to ebb and flow because it's very evident within one to two weeks of that six week cycle, if something's just going to continually get dropped. And so for instance, I might put French at the end of the day and then it just doesn't happen for two weeks solid. So I know that I need to shift that otherwise it's not going to happen for six weeks solid. So I would sit down and look at my schedule and move it, which is usually up closer to the start of our day, if I want to get in the habit of having something there that hasn't been there. So in the day to day, it changes because of the day to day changes.
There's life happening around us while I'm schooling. So we might start late or the baby needs to be fed, or there's lots of arguing or the children are more tired or they're more emotional, whatever it is sometimes morning time is the perfect thing to draw everyone together. And I'll tell you if that's the case, then quite often I can even put two elements together before we separate and let the little ones go because they just need more time to just, I don't know, it got or something in the morning if there aren't, you know, not on their usual, usual selves, you know? So the only hesitation I've had with when we do a longer chunk is that means there's a longer chunk that the children at a part of our morning and they're, you know, and we're trying to get through out the rest of our school. But anyway, so that's, that's kind of what we do.
Well, that's a really good point because a lot of times I know moms worry about the impact that the toddler is going to have on their morning time. But in, you know, the opposite of that is the fact that if your three-year-old is not participating in what you're doing at the moment, and you have a lot of other younger children, they're probably off getting into some kind of mischief during the times that you're trying to work with the nine-year-old seven-year-old, you know, so it honestly having them come in and out like that, probably isn't just helpful for the morning time portions, but also the portions when they're not doing morning time as well. Right?
So here's what happened for me. I would lay in bed at night and wonder how I could reach all of my children when I'm having to be so focused on schoolwork. And is this what homeschooling meant that the children in school received all my attention for the morning. And I just had to miss out on the preschool toddler years, you know, with any children that were now not in school, I love being with my children and I love the preschool toddler years. And so there was just this constant tension. There was this imbalance. So when I started to realize that morning time didn't need to exclude them, but the richness of it could actually impact and bring joy to each of them as well. That may be my alternated way, I did on some days, but I didn't do it all, all that. I just chose different certain elements for a time that having morning time spread out meant that I felt like I was with all of my children and that each of my children felt like that they were a part of our day. And that morning time was for them not for only those in school. The challenge of doing it this way is for me, is I need to have everything written down on paper as just as a guide. And even though I have it written down with the time, you know, ideally how, when I'd like to start or how long, ideally I think it should go those times are just, just a guide. So I may have to drop our nursery rhyme and folksong on portion out completely on a certain day, or I may drop the read aloud time. But one thing I know for certain is that at least one portion almost always happens because I can always stop and often we need to stop and change course through our morning, and then It just feels right. And so even if my children are playing really well and I don't need to do this ebb and flow thing, because I don't know the mornings just going smoothly, then I will have our morning time start at the end, we'll finish school. And I'll say, Oh, we've finished our school part, come on and let's do morning time. And then we'll just do out 15 minute Bible portion of our Bible reading and our hymn and whatnot that, so that's why with the children coming in and out, it just, it does you're right. It does just keep the little ones that of mischief, but it changes. It changed their whole attitude because they stopped asking, are you done yet? I haven't done yet. And they stopped pulling out every single toy and every single book and every single piece of clothing from the drawers and where you couldn't even see the floor.
And I just realized they just, they just didn't even know what to do. I was asking them to behave and not fight and not argue and play nicely and be quiet, but two hours straight. And I just realized that it was just without fail what I was asking of them. And I didn't feel right to me either. And so when I realized, well, I could do this. I just need to figure out how to, to make it work where they want to be in. It included, you know? Yeah. I didn't want to do it where it was going to be an hour to an hour and a half of morning time, because I knew that my younger ones wouldn't stay focused that long and I would lose them anyway.
And we would just go back to what we were doing, where we would be trying to struggle through to get something finished. And they would be now in the same room with us, all coming in and out. And I just want, I wanted a different feel for our family. I wanted it to be really special for everybody to be included and to, you know, it's really sweet to see your three-year-old, who can barely form words follow along in a memorization of scripture or sing a song or a hymn, and just enjoy it as much as they are able to at three, even though they don't understand even what they're saying, but it's very, very fulfilling.
Yeah. I love this. And you know, homeschool moms who have older kids and younger kids, they struggle so much with this guilt of, Oh, my little one is not getting the same experience that my oldest one got when they were that age. And so it sounds like you've come up with a really wonderful way to kind of alleviate some of that by including everyone together in these small chunks of morning time throughout the day.So this is awesome. Well, Haley, what are some of your best tips for the mom? Who's trying to figure out where the natural spots in her day might be to place some morning time elements?
Well, I would say the me with having younger ones, I just tried to figure out first what was a good amount of time that allowed them to play, but it wasn't too long. So 30 minutes is a good amount of time for the younger ones to play and then naturally ready for a break or change of pace or something like that. Anyway, when I only had young children, so when my oldest was six and I had a four and a half year old, a three year old and an 18 month old and a newborn, I would do morning time in the afternoon. So we would have a read aloud and a memorization while the younger ones were napping. And then when the little ones would be waking up from their naps, we would have our composer study, which at that time I use story of the orchestra that year, which just gave us a taste of famous composers. And then we sing a hymn all while they were laying on my lap and waking up. It was, it was a beautiful time now that I look back. But at the time I felt like it was the only time I could squeeze it in, on a consistent basis, but because I wasn't doing everything, it never felt like morning time to me, but it really was, it was just shorter and we did less than we do now.
But the key for me is whenever I'm doing any portion of morning, time is consistency. If I write down on paper that I want to have Bible story time first, but after breakfast at all is too hectic to get everyone back together. Cause my little ones are already out in the back and off playing. And then there may, maybe I just need to reconsider where that would fit best.
So it happens on a consistent basis. So maybe I just put my Bible story time during breakfast, but I'll place catechism and hymn singing and scripture at lunch, which is what I've also done before too. I used to bring everyone to the dining table while I prepared lunch. And while I was preparing lunch, that's where, and when we practiced our hymn and our catechism and did our scripture memorization.
So we do all that while I was preparing lunch. And by the time I sat down with them and they all had their lunch in front of them, I would, I would read, allow. So I would say put it where you think it might work and then see that happens if you just never get to it at all during your day for weeks on end, then it's a sure thing that that time of day just doesn't work. And I will say that there have been weeks and dare, I even say months that I didn't really do any morning time elements. And it's okay if your season of life calls for that. I think as long as you know, it's temporary and you keep evaluating where, and when you can put portions back into your day and really even if you just keep one part of morning time as part of your day, so you're gathering all your children together for that sweet irreplaceable time, then that's enough for this season.
Yeah. And I think too, you know, it's so sad that you didn't think you were doing morning time when they were napping and you were just doing this little pieces, you know, but we tell everybody who started morning time for the very first time, you know, somebody who stumbles upon this idea and they're like, Oh, I want to do this. How do I do this? And we always say, start with just one thing, start with one thing and do that for a couple of weeks and then add one more thing and then do that for a couple of weeks. So it doesn't matter if you're just looking for spots throughout the day to do morning time, or if eventually you are going to do it all in one chunk, the key to starting either way is to start with something small and, you know, work your way up from there. So even with a more organic morning time, like you're doing stick one element here, try it, try to add another element to it. And then once you get, you know, 15 or 20 minutes in, then try to add another one to a different part of the day and see how it works out
And be okay when life changes, like when you have a baby or you're sick, you know, you have a chronic illness that you're suffering with that, you know, you can't keep up with what, you know, the lady next door in schooling is doing. So.
Yeah, Very much so well you've told us a lot of the benefits of spreading out the elements of morning time throughout your day, versus sitting down and doing it in one big chunk. So what are some of the challenges of doing it that way?
I would say some of the challenges could be that everyday changes. And so not all the elements that we do or that I have on paper actually get done. So if we start school late that particular day, and we don't start with morning time, because, the children are already off playing and I'm just gathering my two older girls. So we'll just get started. And then I'll do our Bible time portion of morning time first, a little bit later, then that's going to bump, you know, and maybe that bumps out our read aloud time, or maybe it bumps out the nursery rhyme and folksong which they all love. But you know, and so that's one of the challenges is that we don't always get to do everything. And then the other thing that I would say for me is I just have to be aware of what's happening in my home because I want to go with the ebb and flow, you know? So if you know, things are a little more chaotic, I may bring them in sooner to keep, keep them coming in, to avoid all these gaffles that might be happening so we can just get their minds focused on something, you know, something true and beautiful and good to help kind of ward off any angry, angry feelings that are happening.
So, And that's all, it's always hard. I mean, to me, it's sometimes easier just to put my head down and push through than it is to have a lot of transitions, but I can often see in my children that even though the transitions are hard, sometimes they're also, it's also necessary to switch things up.
Right. And sometimes, you know, it is more helpful because if we do morning time, my three year old still may struggle to sit quiet and still on some days. And so she'll be on my lap. And so there's just, that just is needed to, you know, keep everyone playing nicely when they're separated, because I may not always let her go either. I may just hold her while we keep doing, do things with her on the side to keep her preoccupied. So, you know, it's just that whole ebb and flow thing again, that's just, you know, you want every day to be perfect and you want every day to go smoothly. And I do say that most days it does because we have this rhythm that we've been doing for quite some months.
Now they just know that before, when we would start school, it was, Oh, no, you have school today because it just was so long to them. But now it's just, Oh, we have school too. We, we have school today. And so, yeah, it's just having them because they are part of it. We just modeled them through.
Okay. Well, here's another thing. Being a person who likes to keep all of her morning time things in one tidy little basket and pull it out when it's time to do morning, time, you know, and weed through my basket, do all of my stuff and put it all back in the basket, put it all on the shelf.
What are some of the logistical issues with spreading your morning, time out? How do you keep track of what you're doing? And then how do you keep your materials organized and accessible? If somebody is interested in doing it like this, do you have any tips for them? Well, I just have my morning basket that sits on my Hutch and inside that is just my binder and my morning time binder with all our different elements.
And then I have our book that we use for our nursery rhymes and it's, so it's just all there. And so when we, you know, pick up what we made the first portion and I use it for that, and then at that goes into the basket and then I just get grabbed the next section. And so it's all, it's just all there.
And oldest sits there and, you know, just, you know, you get your binder and you get your things and then you put those to the back and then the next set of books and whatever else I'm using for the next portion as they're ready on the top for me to take out. So you could even carry that basket around the house with you and yeah.
Yeah. And then every six weeks you refresh it when you evaluate what you're going to be doing for the next six weeks.
Right. So a lot of times it doesn't change too much just unless something is con consistently dropped, but right. I look at it, look at everything every six weeks and I might just say, Oh, well, you know, French tended to get dropped more often than I would have liked. So where could I put that where at least likely would get dropped. And so, you know, this last six weeks we just had about 20 minutes before we moved into French and Then it just happened more often there than it did later on in the day. And so we just, yeah, I just, every six weeks I look at how it's all working and if there's anything that needs to change, because things change, you know, like I said earlier that the baby might not need, I may need to have time where I'm, you know, feeding the baby solids. And so I need to have that in part of the day or planned.
So that needs to be taken into account because that's going to throw off our morning, otherwise if I, if I don't have that planned out.
Right. Okay. So you have kids who are that nine and under age, and you know, some who are kind of wiggly and learning to pay attention. So tell us about some of your favorite resources. Cause I bet we have a lot of curiosity about some of the things you liked to use.
Well, I will say that whatever is on my bookshelf at the moment, because I feel like we have so much that we've read to our older ones when they were little that as they've grown with and we've added to our family, that our younger ones haven't had the same attention given that we can pull anything from our shelf and begin with reading.
So at the moment we're reading the big picture storybook Bible, but we're just a chapter or two from finishing. And I use, we sing for our nursery rhymes and I've looked at staff or before as well for ideas. I choose any longer picture books for our read aloud time, usually. So at the moment we switch off between Brambly Hedge and Frog and Toad, and I have treasuries of those. So I have the big thicker books because that does excites my little ones to know, Oh, we're going to be reading this for a long while. And books like Little Bear Winnie the Pooh, the Jesus Storybook Bible is another that we've read. And then I will just say, you don't know, I'm going to say this, Pam, I'm going to tell, tell them that your morning time plans are an incredible tool and worth their weight in gold for just the ideas and resources. And in fact, I'm going to be adding in one afternoon a week, an art lesson that because you've included that in your morning time plans. Art is an area that I laugh because I don't want the mess. And I don't know what to do with five children and paint. Goodness, me just gives me heart palpitations, but we've done those chalk pastel classes that you've posted on Facebook live. And they've been awesome because I can help my three and four year old while the other three can follow Nana's instructions. And it's just been an incredible change and much needed. Like my children just crave doing art.
And so I thought, you know what, when I've seen your morning time plans and how they have these links where you can just learn and watch, I just think to just an afternoon, a week is what will work for us. We haven't started yet, but I thought it's totally doable for us when the baby's napping that I can just set up the laptop and we can, we can just learn together and give them the, to be an artist. And so that I can't tell you how much I would think that that would give any mama and encouragement of keeping on pressing forward of not just already having the ideas given to her. And so I know you didn't know I was going to give you a morning time plans, a plug, but it really, really is true.
Well, that's awesome. And yeah, those are tutorials from chalk pastel.com. I love that because we just go to the dining room table, we flip, open the laptop and pull up the one that we're going to do. And just give everybody a piece of printer paper and spread out these wonderful tools that we got from the art store for like $4.
And everybody has such a good time creating something. Yeah. Yeah. Those, those are awesome. And I love the fact that that's the part of your organic morning time you're going to do when the baby's asleep. That's awesome. Yeah. Those are some really good resources. And I'd never thought about getting like the Frog and Toad, you know, the big book, the collection, the treasury of it. And I may, I may actually have to put that in my Amazon cart because we have some of the little bitty stories, but I love, I just, I love Toad so much. So he's like..
That's my, my son's favorite. He says, please don't keep reading. Brambly Hedge is all about girls.
So he, you know, Frog and Toad satisfies his little boy thing.
Yeah. Toad is my kind of guy. So, well Haley last question. What do you do if you have a child who is not wanting to participate in morning time, you know, do you require that they do it or, you know, it does sometimes, you know, maybe the three-year-old doesn't make it back for French. Is that okay?
Well, it is sort of, okay, so branch is optional, but most of the time when we do our morning time portions, it's really not, it's not optional because we, we require our children to sit in church with us anyway. And so it just feels counter productive to, you know, not have them, you know, sit with us for just 15 minutes because it is so short. So there are times where my four year old son and my three-year-old may complain and say, they don't want to come for morning time, but it doesn't take much coercing. And I, I use that word loosely as I really don't need to coerce them.
They still are ages where just a little encouragement is all they need. I say something like this is our time for everyone. And we just don't want you to miss out on being with us. So just come on, it's just such a short time. And once they get there, they’re fine sometimes, you know, my three-year-old, you know, is a little bit more feisty.
And so I just have her sit in my lap and just the same Thing like this, because I really want them to feel like this is for them. And there's not really an element of that. There's not a whole portion that we do have 15 minutes. That's too difficult for them to sit through it. The first part, they have their Bible story.
We have our hymn sing and they're fully engaged. And then again with, you know, out nursery rhymes and folk song, they do just get fully engaged. So I wanted it to be that because it was acceptable amount of time to have them sit for it. I wasn't asking too much of them. I do require them because it's so rich for them too.
And yeah, so I, I guess if you know, what, if here's the thing, if they didn't want to, I don't know, because they really do want to come. They really do want to come back in and do what they with us. So It's wonderful that you've created this atmosphere. It's something that they get to do and they are young.
You know, obviously we, we understand if somebody out there is listening and they have an 11 or 12 year old boy, and they've not done this before, it could be a little more challenging to get them involved, but we're talking about young children and you've made it something so engaging that they get to do. And I think that's going to last for quite a long time for you.
They're gonna, they're gonna wanna do that. So yeah, it works. Yes, yes. Yes. Well, Haley, Thank you so much for joining us here today. I can hear just a sigh of relief across, you know, all of podcasts, listen-dom, all of these mamas out there going, Oh, this is another way to do it.And this might actually work for us. So I really appreciate you taking the time to share this with us. Oh, thank you for having me Pam
And there you have it, episode 34 of the, your morning basket podcast. Now for the basket bonus for today, we have for you a planning sheet. If you're interested in doing a more organic morning time, like Haley does in her home, maybe having a few mini sessions of morning time spread throughout the day, you might want a planning sheet for that. So we have for you what we're calling a morning time, mini sessions, planning sheet, and it just a sheet broken up into various sessions to help you plan out different morning time activities throughout the day.
And you can download that at the show notes for this episode of the podcast, Pambarnhill.com/YMB34. Also at those show notes, you'll be able to find links to any of the books or resources that Hayley and I spoke about on today's episode of the podcast. We'll be back again in a couple of weeks with another great morning time interview until then keep seeking truth, goodness and beauty in your homeschool day.

Key Ideas about Organic Morning Time

There is not just one way to do Morning Time. Your Morning Time doesn’t have to look like anyone else’s Morning Time. Rather, it should make sense for your family and your children.

If having one longer Morning Time session in your day isn’t working, look for the ebbs and flows of the day and where a break occurs naturally. See if you can put one or two elements of Morning Time into those natural breaks in the day. Make a plan of where you’d like to put each break for Morning Time and try it out. If something is repeatedly getting skipped, make adjustments to the plan.

Be patient with each season your family experiences and know that none of them are permanent. Do what you can in the season that you are in and be content with that.

Using things like coffee table books and art calendars make it easy to give your kids lots of exposure to great art.  

Find what you want to hear:

  • [3:00] meet Hayley Beck
  • [3:58] Hayley’s Morning Time flow
  • [13:15] changing your Morning Time rhythm
  • [20:34] best tips for a mom trying to find where to put Morning Time into the school day
  • [24:44] challenges of spreading Morning Time out throughout the day
  • [27:45] storing Morning Time materials
  • [30:18] Hayley’s favorite resources
  • [34:15] when a child doesn’t want to participate

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Thanks for your reviews

  • Life Affirming
    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!
    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!
    by Lizzie O' from United States

    Pam, My children are almost 11 and 13 and I never sent this review in! I found it sitting here. This is testimony that I am still so blessed by this podcast years later. So here it is: I wrote you an email when I first felt it placed on my heart to homeschool my now 6

  • Love the show!
    by Startup Travis from United States

    Love your content and the guests you have visiting the show! I am a huge believer in using the morning hours well. Thank you for your direction and products!

  • Enjoy the podcast & some thoughts…
    by rufocused from United States

    I enjoy listening to tips on starting and using morning time as I am just starting it this year. We have kind of done it in the past, but when you only have one child you tend to just call it bible, story time, etc… but now that my second one is old enough to join we’re going to have more of a true morning time. I did notice Pam mentioned CNN ten in one episode. CNN can be pretty liberal biased in the main news, I’m not sure if they curb that in the “CNN ten”, but thought I would mention the Daily Wire, which is from a conservative viewpoint (and often covers indoctrination in public schools) and could be fun to compare and contrast with CNN. Our family also recently discovered Daily Citizen from Focus on the Family which has a very Christian perspective, which has been refreshing as news can be so depressing sometimes! Just thought I’d throw that out there… but really do appreciate the perspectives and insights of these women who have been doing this for awhile!

  • Very helpful and pleasant to listen to.
    by Heather homeschooler from United States

    I have listened to many episodes of this podcast and have highly recommended it to others. It has been a wonderful source of inspiration and encouragement. Pam has a great voice and presence and I love that she does not interrupt or talk over her guests. Thank you for your hard work!

  • Always insightful!!
    by method_money from Canada

    Pam always has great great guests who bring great insights and encouragement! I so appreciate her down to earth style and ability to ask great questions! Keep up the great work!!

  • A wildly encouraging and equipping podcast for homeschool families.
    by Eryn Lynum from United States

    As a homeshool mama of four (Ages 2-9), Pam's podcast has been an increidble encouragement to me. Not only that, but I have discovered so many helpful resources for focusing on what is lovely and true during our homeschool days. I love that it is not overwhelming in nature, but instead a gentle help for moving forward one day at a time in our homeschooling adventure.

  • Best podcast for homeschooling/variety of topics
    by Bethetal from United States

    I love this podcast for so many reasons. (1) Pam is friendly, funny, humble and kind (2) She covers a multitude of topics (one at a time)- I have learned about nature notebooks, classical music study, narration, living books, Shakespeare and so much more. Whenever I have a question about a new (to me)HS term or practice, I come here to listen to Pam interview someone about it. Her interviewees have all been all-in on their respective areas of interest/expertise and I love the way she interviews/asks questions to really let the guests shine as they speak. I have changed the structure of my homeschool, found books for my kids and me, purchased materials, and found inspiration due to this podcast and I can’t recommend it enough! This podcast has shaped my homeschool in so many positive ways, most of which I probably can’t even articulate yet, as the changes have been done inside of me. Thanks, Pam!

  • Great!!!
    by Eloblah from United States

    I love the variety of things that are talked about on this show for homeschooling - things that I would never even think about including or doing - with easy ways to do them. Very much recommend this podcast

  • New home schooling mom
    by A prit from United States

    I am listening to the past episodes and loving it. This podcast has helped me develop my own homeschool. So many ideas!! I love morning time so much, we do a nightly family time so my husband and public school attending son. We do all the things instead of watching tv, playing ps4, and YouTube. My kids hang around me every evening asking if we are doing family time. I can tell they love it but don’t want to admit it.

  • Morning Time Magic!
    by DrewSteadman from United States

    I am so excited Pam is back to her morning time focus for 2020. Our homeschool has been shaped by the rich ideas and practical wisdom shared here.

  • Yay! Morning time is back!
    by Homeschooler in Germany from United States

    I was so happy and excited to learn that Pam is shifting her focus back to Morning Time for 2020! I’ve missed the morning time exclusive podcast and can’t wait to hear her back in my earbuds.

  • So excited for 2020!
    by JCrutchf from United States

    I absolutely LOVE this podcast and was so disappointed when I realized you were not actively producing it! I’m NOW relieved to know there is a whole year of episodes ahead! I’m beginning my homeschool journey with 4 little ones very close in age and my style falls somewhere in the Classical and Charlotte Mason. I found your podcast by chance via Instagram recommendation as I was doing research on “morning menus.” Your content is beautifully philosophical but at a level most parents will be able to grasp and appreciate. Filled with truth, beauty, and goodness! Your episodes fill me up and leave me feeling inspired personally and in regards to my children’s education. Everything is so good! Please don’t stop producing ever again! I’ll be grateful forever!

  • So glad Your Morning is back!!!
    by alissajohn2020 from United States

    So glad to have the morning basket podcast back! Thank you for bringing it back!!

  • So good I ran out of gas.
    by JoanieHummel from United States

    This podcast is awesome! It was recommended to me a few years ago by a very wise and experienced homeschool mom but I didn’t start listening until I saw it come up a few more times on Facebook, recommended in various groups (in particular, episode number 41). I wish I had picked it up years ago! So much great information, I’m learning so much! Be careful though, I was so interested listening to this podcast that I didn’t notice how low my gas tank was getting! I ran out of gas and as I write this review I’m stranded on the side of the road waiting for a friend to come rescue me! Happy listening!

  • Knowledge Goldmine
    by A.J. Edwards from United States

    I’ve just been eating up every episode of this brilliant podcast over the past few months. The guests are stellar and Pam’s interview style is wonderful. She gets each guest to the meat and potatoes of their topic but it’s anything but a plain meal. This is a feast for the homeschool mom’s mind. I know I’ll be revisiting many of my favorite episodes again and again. Feeling so inspired by each guest!

  • Myths and fairytale truths for homeschoolers
    by Allierhn from United States

    Mind blown! I’m listening to the myth podcast and it’s absolutely perfect. It is answering so many questions I’ve struggled with my whole life. It helps me to view our curriculum and informs my teaching so much more.

  • Super Helpful!
    by Jennlee C from United States

    I can’t speak highly enough about this podcast. It has been a huge inspiration and a practical help to my homeschool! Thank you so much Pam Barnhill and everyone else who contributes to this. It has been an amazing blessing to me and my children… And possibly generations to come!

  • Practical Inspiration
    by Mamato3activeboys from Australia

    Not only am I inspired by each episode of this podcast but I have actually put so many of the ideas into practice in our own morning time. Such a huge help as I seek to inspire my non-stop boys to truth, goodness and beauty. We are now memorising poetry as they jump on the trampoline and they love Shakespeare. That's a parenting win in my book!

  • So many great ideas!
    by Parent 98765 from Malaysia

    Thank you, Pam! I’m now bursting with inspiration and can’t wait to start our 2019 school year with a strong morning time routine.

  • Joy
    by Ancon76 from United States

    My heart is enriched and I can’t wait to learn more.

  • Just what I was looking for!
    by Joey5176 from United States

    I was looking for morning basket ideas—simple ones. These podcasts are giving me a picture of a good morning basket.

  • Wow!! What amazing nuggets of knowledge
    by HeRo84 from United States

    This is truly life changing information for me as a homeschool mother. Thank you Pam for this amazing series.

  • Love it!