50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (2024)

I have discovered that one of the best tools in homeschooling is the morning basket. A morning basket gives you a slow and gentle way to bring everyone together as minds start to wake up and become more receptive. They foster amazing bonds as you pile up on the couch in the living room or sprawl across the carpet in the school room together, and give you a chance to make and share plans for the day.

50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (1)

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Grab any kind of basket or tub that works for your family, it can even be a large canvas bag or maybe a laundry basket. Changing up your basket keeps it fresh, interesting, and inviting to everyone. While books are the heart of a morning basket you can include other items to keep hands busy, start adiscussion, celebrate, or just enjoy.It can be challenging to constantly find new ideas, so here are 50 ideas for your morning basket.

50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (2)

  • Math Flashcards – Toss in a few of whichever math operations your child needs to review or learn. If your kids are as energetic as mine in the morning, have them hop or jump while answering their math facts!

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  • Sight Word/Letter Flash Cards– Just like math this is a great opportunity to add a little review time to your day.
  • Read Aloud Book – Choose a classic book to read aloud as a family, it can go along with the theme you are working on for school or it can just totally be for fun. If you have an older child, have them read to the younger ones while you sip your coffee!
  • Board or card game – Something small that is a quick play, like a travel game or card game. It can be related to your topics of study or purely for fun. One fun game is Sushi Go.50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (5)50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (6)
  • Crossword Puzzle Book or Word Search Book– Give everyone a different color highlighter and work to find the words together.
  • Playdough/Clay– Children often enjoy something to keep their hands busy during story readings.
  • Fidget Toys– Quiet fidget toys can keep little hands busy which allows their brain to focus on listening. The fidget spinners are super popular, but I really like the tangle toys.50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (7)

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  • Nature Items– Found snakeskin, empty wasp nests, rocks, gems, or any other item that might spark interest. My son really likes rocks and calls them his “treasure maps”.
  • Chalk Pastels and Sketchpad– The beautiful vibrant colors and texture of pastels draw in kids that don’t even normally enjoy art.
  • Small Dry Erase Board– Ideal for practicing spelling words, drawing, playing hangman in the morning, or other simple tasks.
  • Maps– Use them to learn capitals, locate various countries, play games, and more. Scrunchy maps are great for the basket.

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  • Clipboard– To hold paper for drawing, writing, painting, etc..
  • Poetry Books– You can read beautiful classic poetry or giggle-inducing Shel Silverstein.
  • Watercolors/Paper – Let your child paint a simple watercolor painting while you read from a great read-aloud book.
  • Bible/ Devotional – Begin your morning with a couple of verses or a whole chapter; work in simple devotions. This is an interesting devotional book.
  • Story Dice–I actually found out about these because we got one in a Chick-fil-a kid’s meal. Story dice are a great way to spark silly, fun stories among the whole family.

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  • Book of Art–Flip through the pages and talk about the art you like and don’t like.Which ones do you know the name of?
  • Musical Instruments –If your child is learning a small instrument like a recorder it can easily be tucked inside your basket. Tambourines, a triangle, or drumsticks can be considered as well.
  • Science Book –A living science book to flip through can spark discussions or even a new study.
  • Magnatiles –Use them to recreate the Eiffel Tower, the alphabet, or anything else their imagination can come up with.

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  • JokeBooks –Not all reading has to be deep! Simple joke books are the perfect tool for reluctant readers.
  • Science or History Figurines –My favorite are Toobs. I generally choose some that go along with what we are studying. We all love our glow in the dark dinosaurs!
  • Mad Libs–A super fun way to learn or review parts of speech!
  • Math Dice – Give each child a chance to work out a couple of simple problems with the math dice.

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  • Yoga Cards/ Dice–Movement can help wake kids up and loosen muscles, and get the wiggles out. Yoga dice are a great way for sleepy kids to stretch and wake up too!
  • Essential Oils– Either those that you place in a diffuser or in a roller bottle can be beneficial to relaxation and focus.
  • Ipod/Mp3 –Quiet classical music in the background can be very stimulating or use it to listen to songs from different genres each day or week.
  • Picture Books– Picture books are great for toddlers and preschoolers! Older children may still enjoy flipping through classic books from their younger years.
  • Snacks–Not just any snacks! Use this as a time to try food unique to a country or region you may be learning about.
  • String and Beads – This will keep small ones busy while building fine motor skills and gives them something to show for their time. My son needs all the fine motor skills practice he can get!

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  • Seasonal Items- Include simple items for whatever holiday or season is coming up, to spark conversation.
  • Math Manipulatives – Any kind will work but these snap blocks are good for simple math problems or even building.
  • Lacing Cards– Fine motor practice is important for toddlers and preschoolers. My wiggly son loves gross motor skills, so we try to work in fine motor skills as often as possible. These lacing cards are great!
  • Kinetic Sand–Sensory items like this are great for calming kids! Kinetic sand is easy to clean up too.

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  • Nature Guides– Field guides are not only for the trail (or field); they often have lovely pictures to look at that will interest children.
  • Foreign Language Dictionary – Use it to learn a new word in a foreign language each day. You could also slip a sign language book in your basket and learn a new sign every day.
  • Thesaurus – Look up synonyms for commonly used words and expand everyone’s vocabulary.
  • Chore lists/Cards – Hand out a few chores to be completed after morning time or throughout the day.

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  • Biographies/Autobiographies – There are books from preschool age to high school age that can teach everyone about the amazing lives of noteworthy people.
  • Simple Math Books – Something light that stimulates the brain a bit without too much work involved.
  • Puzzles – For more involved puzzles, you can grab a roll-up mat so you can put it away and work on it a little each morning. How cool is that?

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  • Handicrafts – A simple sewing, knitting, cross stitch, latch hook, or another project.
  • Cookbooks– Use them for inspiration on planning a meal that goes with your topic of study. Choose a recipe to try that week together.
  • Family Photos – Kids love to look at old family photos and this is a great opportunity to share some of your family’s history.
  • Seasonal Books – Besides chapter books for read-alouds, be sure to include books that are appropriate for the season or holiday.
  • Camera -Consider slipping a camera (or your phone) in occasionally to capture those sweet moments where a child is learning to read or older children are playing a card game with the little ones.
  • Stickers – These make a good reward for little ones who sit quietly for readings, or can be added to drawings while they color.

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  • Notepad/Pen – Jot down things as you think of them that you might want to add to future baskets. One book or item might lead to something else everyone is interested in.
  • Daily schedule – Quickly go over the day’s schedule so kids will know what to expect through the day.
  • Newspaper–A great way to introduce them to current events, teach them how to read the stocks, look at the classifieds, read the front page.

What do you like to include in your morning basket? Let me know in the comments!

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  • 50 Morning Basket Ideas for Your Homeschool - Life with Mama E (30)
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