Filed under Motherhood Young Children
Andrew just finished kindergarten! Actually, I feel like I just finished kindergarten or Homeschool 101. The fact that Andrew can now read and that I have survived the school year with my sanity in tact is a testimony to the grace of God and my trusty little schedule.
I use my schedule as a guide and not a rigid routine. Its purpose is to serve my family; I don’t feel obligated to accomplish every item on a given day. The schedule doesn’t always go smoothly or perfectly, because my boys are little sinners like their mommy! But it has brought a degree of order to what would otherwise be a rowdy riotous day with a six, three, and two year old. I can’t imagine doing life, much less homeschool, without it.
7:00—7:30 Breakfast with Daddy
My husband reads the Bible to them and helps my oldest son to memorize Scripture.
7:30—8:00 Back on their beds with a few toys or books
8:00—9:00 School Time
The boys play in the basement for a few minutes while I clean up breakfast and then do school with Andrew. The younger two think they are doing school too, even though they are only coloring!
9:00—9:30 Show Time
They watch a tv show.
9:30—10:00 Blanket Time for Liam and Owen
(Andrew normally reads books on the couch during this time.)
The two younger boys get a snack and a toy and sit on their special blankets. Then at the 15-minute mark I give them a different toy. These are toys that they don’t get to play with any other time of the day. I used to put their blankets side by side, but then they would throw toys from one blanket to the next or tempt each other to mischief. Since I moved their blankets to separate floors, it is working much better!
10:00—11:00 Play Outside
11:00—12:00 Chad Time
My brother comes and plays with them 3x per week. This is a wonderful blessing. I recommend that all mothers have a mother’s helper if possible.
12:00—3:00 Lunch and Naps
3:00—3:45 Project Time
3:45—4:15 Stroller Time
I have been training my three year old to hold on to the stroller when we are out (rather then riding). Taking walks around the neighborhood helps me reinforce this practice.
4:15—4:30 Pick-Up Toys
4:30—5:00 Video Time
5:00 - 5:15 - Table Time with books.
I got this idea from my friend Beth when I lived in Chicago. She had her children sit quietly and read books at the end of the day. I have my boys sit at the kitchen table and give them each a different book to read. Then I set the time and finish making dinner in the kitchen right next to them. Last week, I needed more than 15 minutes, so I kept adding to the timer when they weren’t looking!
5:15—7:30 Dinner and Bedtime Routine
Scheduling—and can I say, re-evaluating and scheduling again—has really served me over this past year. It has not only made homeschooling Andrew possible, but it has enabled me to get a morning devotional time and some “down time” during naps. Scheduling has helped me to be intentional and proactive, rather than reactive in training my children.
Writing this post makes me excited about my summer schedule. And it’s just a suggestion, but why don’t you try a summer schedule too?