One of my favorite things that we’ve added to our homeschool over the years is our morning work binders. These have been a wonderful way for my kids to gain independence in their learning, bring different subjects into our homeschool that we didn’t want to do a full curriculum to cover, and start our day on the right foot. There are many ways to make Morning Work Binders work in your home – they don’t have to look the ways ours do! Incorporate them in morning time or your morning basket, or throughout the day.
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Want to see a full walk through of our Morning Work Binders? Watch the video on YouTube!
Our goals for Morning Work Binders
- a gentle introduction to the day, to get our brains going
- a practice in daily Bible reading and prayer
- cover subjects that might not be in our “regular” curriculum
- give us a strong start to the day, so we always cover something, even if the rest of the day goes off the rails!
- give the early risers a task
- independence in work and learning
What goes in a Morning Work Binder?
The great thing about a morning work binder (or folder, basket, whatever you want to use… a binder isn’t necessary here! ;) is that you can put anything in here! There isn’t one right way to do this.
In our family, I love to have the morning work available for the kids to do after breakfast in the morning. This is so they have things to do to get started on their day, even if they’re up before everyone else. Once your kids get into this habit, they’ll just naturally do it on their own! It’s a great way to encourage independence in your homeschool.
If you don’t want your kids to do this independently, or if they’re a little too young for that, you can do it together during your Morning Time, or you can incorporate into other parts of your day.
Word of the Day
Word of the day is a great way to practice vocabulary and spelling, without having to rely on typical spelling lists. The kids define the word, draw it, and write a sentence with the word. For my older kids, I put a vocabulary page from my Read, Think, Write language arts program into their binders. This page adds synonyms and antonyms.
You can click HERE to see our favorite word of the day books.
You can grab the Word of the Day printable free here:
This is kind of what it sounds like… a basket of books! I choose the books, and then my kids get to pick a book they want to read from the basket. I choose a variety of books – some that they might not choose on their own, and others that I know they’ll get excited about reading. Sometimes the books might be around a theme (a season, a subject we’re learning about together, etc.) and other times, they’re just books I think they’ll enjoy. I also choose books of varying reading levels, and I choose some very familiar books that my pre-reader can “read” without actually reading.
After they read, they draw a picture about what they read and write a summary of it. How much they write or draw will depend on their abilities – obviously my middle and high school kids will write more than my elementary kiddos!
Prayer and Scripture
I want my kids to learn and practice the habit of reading their Bible and praying daily. In their binders, I’ve given them tools to help them think about, write, and memorize Scripture, plus resources for guiding them in prayer. This year, I’ve added some pages for my older kids that come from the Cultivate Your Home Planner and Guided Prayer Journal.
Calendar and Weather
The Morning Work Packet comes with a calendar page, a weather page, and a page to set intentions/plans for the day. I also add in some daily task pages for my older kids, along with a visual schedule for my youngest. These are both found in the Work & Rhythms Pack.
Over the course of the year, we will swap pages from the Morning Work Packet into our binders. Some of those pages include:
- Question of the day (this could be something silly like “what would happen if the monkeys all got loose at the zoo?” or something serious like “what was your most memorable vacation?” The Morning Work Packet comes with suggested resources for finding questions to ask.
- Number of the Day
- Today’s Art
- Today’s Copywork
- Book Bingo (for readers and pre-readers)
You could come up many other things to go into this binder! Hymns, poetry, handwriting, etc. The possibilities are endless!