100+ Things to Put in a Morning Basket - Heart and Soul Homeschooling (2024)

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If you’re new to homeschool morning baskets or you’re just looking for some inspiration, here are 100+ things to put in a morning basket.

Our morning baskets have become one of our favorite things about homeschooling. The time we spend together learning and talking and reading is a real treat for this introverted homeschool family. We can dive deeper into the things we really care about and linger over our thoughts.

Confession: I’m not a morning person.

Another confession: Our morning baskets don’t always happen first thing in the morning, though that’s usually the way we do it. We do have occasional afternoon, evening, or even bedtime baskets.

One more confession: It’s okay to call it a morning basket or morning time anyway. Or afternoon time. Or together time. Or whatever works for your family!

Our morning basket has become the heart of our homeschool. We tend to cover these things in our learning together time:

  • Art
  • Music (this includes composers and hymns)
  • Bible
  • Geography
  • History
  • Read-Alouds
  • Educational Games
  • Journaling
  • Nature Study
  • Copywork/Memory Work/Poetry
  • Notebooking/Lapbooking
  • Critical Thinking Skills

In spite of the age differences (my daughters are 9, 11, and 16), we’ve found ways to study these things together and it has enriched us as a family.

Note: We don’t cover every single thing every single day. We’re very relaxed around here and enjoy delight-directed learning, so we tend to follow rabbit trails.

I also want to credit two of my favorite homeschooling mentors, Pam Barnhill and Sarah Mackenzie for helping me to develop this idea of morning time in our homeschool. I had tried to implement these ideas just by instinct with my girls when I found these two ladies who really guided me to visualize what I wanted from morning time in our homeschool. They gave me the confidence to put it into practice! I’ve had the pleasure of talking with Pam Barnhill and she is so smart and so generous with her knowledge. If you don’t have it yet, you need her book Better Together. I also recommend Sarah’s book Teaching from Rest. Both made me feel so much less alone in this homeschool journey and confirmed to me that I was on the right track.

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There are already over 100 things listed here, but the list will continue to grow as we find new treasures to add! Be sure to bookmark, save this post on Pinterest, or share on Facebook so you can remember to come back to it again.

Art

The Art Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained by DK

Chalk Pastels series of lessons — these are great for any age or skill level with lots of different topics to choose. My girls love these! Space, American Landmarks, Seasons, and more!

The Drawing Book for Kids: 365 Daily Things to Draw, Step by Step

We keep our Crayola Inspiration Art Case, sketch books, chalk pastels, and paints (watercolor and gauche) handy for morning time.

How to Draw: Horses

Music

SQUILT — composer studies with Super Quiet Uninterrupted Listening Time. Even if you’re not familiar with classical music or famous composers, this study makes it easy.

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The Classical Music Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained by DK

Maestro Classics series of CDs — great classical music to listen to with great stories to go with it.

Story of the Orchestra: Listen While you Learn about the Instruments, the Music, and the Composers (book comes with CD)

A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers from Bright Ideas Press

Timeless Hymns for All Ages is a lovely study of six favorite hymns:

  • What a Friend We Have in Jesus
  • The Old Rugged Cross
  • It is Well with My Soul
  • Take My Life and Let It Be
  • Amazing Grace
  • Blessed Assurance

You can cover music, Bible, copywork, memory work, and history all with this one study!
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Bible

The One Year Mother-Daughter Devo by Dannah Gresh — we read devotions from this book together and talk about Biblical life application.

Adventure Bible (NIV): Polar Exploration Edition

The Bible Explorer’s Guide: 1000 Amazing Facts and Photos

Indescribable: 100 Devotions for Kids about God and Science by Louie Giglio

Bible Infographics for Kids: Giants, Ninja Skills, a Talking Donkey, and What’s the Deal with the Tabernacle?

Case for Christ for Kids by Lee Strobel

Case for Faith for Kids by Lee Strobel

Case for a Creator for Kids by Lee Strobel

Case for Grace for Kids by Lee Strobel

Fearless Faith: 100 Devotions for Girls by Melanie Shankle, for ages 8 and up, includes a verse, encouragement, and activity and/or questions to apply

You’re God’s Girl! A Devotional for Tweens by Wynter Pitts

Apologia Worldview series

Geography

U.S.A. State-by-State Geography Notebook— this includes notebooking and coloring pages for each state with information about the capital, the state bird, state flower, and more.

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Flags of the U.S. States flash cards

History

History through the Ages timeline project

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Read-Alouds

Audio books and stories — we listen to Adventures in Odyssey, Jonathan Park, Your Story Hour, and the Brinkman Adventures to name a few. Librivox has some good choices for free audio books.

HarperCollins Treasury of Picture Book Classics: A Child’s First Collection

Make Way for McCloskey: A Robert McCloskey Treasury

The Narnia Chronicles by C.S. Lewis

The Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Christy by Catherine Marshall

A Man Called Peter by Catherine Marshall

The Story Girl series by L.M. Montgomery

The Book of Virtues: A Treasury of Great Moral Stories by William J. Bennett

Betsy Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace

The Little Women series by Louisa May Alcott

Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Bank

All-of-a-Kind Family series by Sydney Taylor

Leah’s Pony by Elizabeth Friedrich

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

Obviously, I could go on and on with wonderful read-alouds to include, but these are a few of our favorites. You can find more of our favorite books in these posts:

10 Chapter Books Chosen by a 10 Year Old

101 Books Every Girl Should Read

Our Favorite Caldecott Honor Books

Classic Books for Girls

List of classics by grade level with free printable pdf guide

I also recommend the Read-Aloud Family by Sarah Mackenzie for more ideas.

The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease is a highly recommended classic guide, as well.

Educational Games

Bird Bingo

Ocean Bingo

Wildlife Bingo

Bug Bingo

Butterfly Bingo

Wildflower Bingo

Science Bingo

Space Bingo

Bible Bingo

Nature Bingo

Music Bingo

Presidents of the United States Card Game

American Revolution Card Game

Geography of the United States Card Game

Monkey Fractions Interactive Fractions Card Game

BrainBox for Kids Nature Card Game

MindWare BrainBox All Around the World Trivia

BrainBox for Kids World History Card Game

Pun Intended

Passport to Culture

BrainBox Inventions

Professor Puzzle Great Minds Set of 5 wooden puzzles (comes in historical women or men sets)

Countries of the World Card Game

Ancient Civilizations Card Game

Solar System Objects, Stars, and Galaxies flash cards

Elements of the Periodic Table flash cards

88 Astronomical Constellations flash cards

Wonders of the World Card Game

Medieval Times Card Game

History of the United States Card Game

Insects and Spiders Card Game

Professor Noggin’s History of Art Trivia Card Game(more appropriate for middle school and up)

Professor Noggin’s Explorers Card Game

Professor Noggin’s National Parks Card Game

Civil War Card Game

Mad Libs — there are many to choose from and they’re a fun way to learn grammar!

Copywork/Memory Work/Poetry

Poetry for Kids: William Shakespeare

Poetry for Kids: Emily Dickinson35 poems, divided into sections by season, grade 3 and up

Poetry for Kids: Robert Frost— includes 35 poems chosen for ages 8-14

Poems to Learn by Heart by Caroline Kennedy — beautiful watercolor paintings are paired with poems that children will appreciate and memorize. Poems for any occasion!

Poetry for Kids: Walt Whitman

Poetry for Kids: Carl Sandburg — you might guess by now that I enjoy this series of Poetry for Kids. They include definitions of key words, a bit about each poet’s life, and provide a gentle introduction to classic poetry.

The 20th Century Children’s Poetry Treasury

Read-Aloud Rhymes for the Very Young

Fruit of the Spirit copywork and memorization printables

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Journals

Reflective Journal for Homeschool Moms

My Kid’s Prayer Journal: 100 Days of Prayer and Praise

Read-Aloud Family Journal

Mom’s Quiet Time Journal

My Purposeful Plans Goal Tracking Journal

My Nature Journal

Everyday Gratitude: A Thankfulness Journal

Nature Study

NaturExplorers Unit Studies — there are several studies (trees, animals, birds, seasons, and more) in this series that can be used for a wide range of ages.
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Sibley Backyard Birding Flashcards: 100 Common Birds of Eastern and Western North America

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Notebooking/Lapbooking

Lapbooks — the girls can often work on lapbooks together in spite of their age differences. We tend to study historical topics with these as we read aloud living history books, or topics of special interest to all three girls, such as horses or other favorite animals or geographical locations.

Critical Thinking Skills

Mini Mysteries: 34 Tricky Tales to Untangle

A Year of Mini Mysteries: 29 Tricky Tales to Untangle

One Minute Mysteries: 65 Short Mysteries You Solve with Scienceby Eric Yoder

One Minute Mysteries: 65 More Short Mysteries You Solve with Scienceby Eric Yoder

One Minute Mysteries: 65 Short Mysteries You Solve with Math by Eric Yoder

I do rotate resources frequently, depending on our progress and what our interests might be at the moment. This is also when I include themed books and studies for the season or holidays.

I hope these 100+ things to put in a morning basket have inspired you to try this in your homeschool!

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Sara

Author/Speaker/Consultant at Heart and Soul Homeschooling

Sara is a homeschool mom to 3 creative girls. She holds a degree in Social Work specializing in early childhood development, which led to her interest in individualized educational options like homeschooling. She believes that learning should be a lifelong adventure, not just a checklist to get through. She is a writer, avid reader, introvert (INFJ), and dreamer of dreams.

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Insights, advice, suggestions, feedback and comments from experts

As an expert in homeschooling, I can provide valuable insights and knowledge on various aspects of homeschooling. I have a deep understanding of the concepts and strategies involved in creating a morning basket, which is a popular practice among homeschooling families.

In the article provided, the author discusses the concept of morning baskets and shares over 100 ideas for things to include in a morning basket. A morning basket is a collection of materials and activities that homeschooling families use to start their day together. It typically includes subjects such as art, music, Bible, geography, history, read-alouds, educational games, journaling, nature study, copywork/memory work/poetry, notebooking/lapbooking, and critical thinking skills.

Art

The author suggests including resources such as "The Art Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained" by DK, the Chalk Pastels series of lessons, and "The Drawing Book for Kids: 365 Daily Things to Draw, Step by Step." They also mention keeping art supplies like the Crayola Inspiration Art Case, sketch books, chalk pastels, and paints handy for morning time.

Music

For music, the author recommends resources like SQUILT (Super Quiet Uninterrupted Listening Time) for composer studies, "The Classical Music Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained" by DK, the Maestro Classics series of CDs, and "Story of the Orchestra: Listen While you Learn about the Instruments, the Music, and the Composers" (book with CD). They also suggest a study called "Timeless Hymns for All Ages" that covers music, Bible, copywork, memory work, and history.

Bible

In terms of Bible resources, the author suggests "The One Year Mother-Daughter Devo" by Dannah Gresh, the Adventure Bible (NIV): Polar Exploration Edition, "The Bible Explorer’s Guide: 1000 Amazing Facts and Photos," and "Indescribable: 100 Devotions for Kids about God and Science" by Louie Giglio. They also mention several books by Lee Strobel, including "Case for Christ for Kids," "Case for Faith for Kids," "Case for a Creator for Kids," and "Case for Grace for Kids."

Geography

For geography, the author recommends the "U.S.A. State-by-State Geography Notebook" which includes notebooking and coloring pages for each state, as well as flashcards for the flags of the U.S. states.

History

In terms of history, the author suggests incorporating read-alouds such as "The Narnia Chronicles" by C.S. Lewis, "The Little House" series by Laura Ingalls Wilder, and "The Anne of Green Gables" series by L.M. Montgomery. They also mention books like "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen, "Christy" by Catherine Marshall, and "A Man Called Peter" by Catherine Marshall.

Read-Alouds

The author provides a list of recommended read-alouds, including "The Story Girl" series by L.M. Montgomery, "The Book of Virtues: A Treasury of Great Moral Stories" by William J. Bennett, and the "Betsy Tacy" series by Maud Hart Lovelace. They also recommend the books "Caddie Woodlawn" by Carol Ryrie Bank and "All-of-a-Kind Family" series by Sydney Taylor.

Educational Games

The author suggests incorporating educational games into the morning basket, such as various versions of bingo (Bird Bingo, Ocean Bingo, Wildlife Bingo, Bug Bingo, Butterfly Bingo, Wildflower Bingo, Science Bingo, Space Bingo, Bible Bingo, Nature Bingo, and Music Bingo). They also mention card games related to topics like presidents of the United States, American Revolution, geography of the United States, monkey fractions, brain teasers, inventions, and more.

Copywork/Memory Work/Poetry

The author recommends resources for copywork, memory work, and poetry, including books like "Poetry for Kids: William Shakespeare," "Poetry for Kids: Emily Dickinson," "Poetry for Kids: Robert Frost," and "Poems to Learn by Heart" by Caroline Kennedy. They also mention specific copywork and memorization printables related to the Fruit of the Spirit.

Journals

The author suggests using various journals in the morning basket, such as reflective journals for homeschool moms, prayer journals for kids, family journals, and goal tracking journals.

Nature Study

For nature study, the author recommends using unit studies from the NaturExplorers series, as well as flashcards for backyard birding.

Notebooking/Lapbooking

The author suggests using lapbooks as a way to study historical topics or topics of interest. They mention using lapbooks in conjunction with read-alouds and studying specific themes.

Critical Thinking Skills

In terms of critical thinking skills, the author recommends resources like mini mysteries books, which provide tricky tales to untangle, and one-minute mysteries books that involve solving mysteries using science or math.

These are just some of the ideas and resources mentioned in the article. The author encourages readers to bookmark or save the post for future reference, as the list of ideas is continually growing.

100+ Things to Put in a Morning Basket - Heart and Soul Homeschooling (2024)
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