Wednesday, November 14, 2012

run- away-train schedule. Finding a good family pace.

My thoughts on scheduling: On one hand I want those free days to be more numerous than not so we can be creative and explore with all the time in the world and no place to be. On the other hand, It is absolutely necessary to schedule events and lessons into our lives to develop skills and character. Music has to be practiced daily, team practice has to have a schedule. Dad has his work schedule. You have to eventually get everyone to the dentist. There is always something on that calendar. But lately I find I am a slave to our family schedule, always in a hurry to be on time to the next thing. It can feel frantic and the quality of our activities seem to dissipate. Sometimes I fantasize about moving to some rural area of the country to farm and live off the land with my family. But even Hezekiah has to get up at 4 AM to milk the cows.

I am learning to be sensitive to what is important for us as a family lately, trying focus on one thing at a time and not let my mental checklist get the best of me or take me away from the moment. It is good to have some days where you don't have to be anywhere! Take at least one or two of these days a week to let your lives unfold naturally as a family. Those are my favorite days.

Figure what works for your family, don't feel pressured to keep up with all the other families. It seems like now a days kids have to be professional soccer players just to join a local league! There is so much competition and pressure, it is insane! What happened to good ol" fashioned play?

I have found with kids, less can be more. Days focused on quality rather than quantity are really the best and most fulfilling.

I am learning to not feel pressured to have my kids in a million activities. picking one sport and one elective per season seems a good pace for now. I am making sure I have those "open schedule days" at least a couple times a week.

Blog article I found from

I’ve been rethinking schedules. I’m getting really tired of them, actually. However, to be balanced I admit that they can be very helpful. I’ve lived it: My homeschool has sometimes hummed along the tracks of a well-planned schedule like the German Regional Express, allowing us to explore the hidden “villages” of science and literature, take field trips, eat a healthful diet, and even clean the house.

A well-planned schedule can take a homeschool through pleasant scenary at a peaceful pace.
On the other hand, a schedule can be a tyrant. All it takes is the desire to help our children reach their potential, with a little self-doubt and guilt thrown in. I’ve lived that, too.

Too busy!
Our culture promotes time management and good organization like a saving religion. The highest virtues, it seems, are over-activity and achievement. Both demand a rigid schedule. In addition, we homeschoolers often hear about the dazzling accomplishments of other homeschooled children. These stories are intended to encourage and inspire, and they certainly can; but taken as a standard, they can sow stress. They have at times compelled me to build ambitious schedules that drained the creativity from our homeschool.
A schedule is supposed to serve the family, not the reverse. When it blinds us to the creativity and freedom of real life, it has become a runaway train, endangering our relationships. We feel its relentless condemnation when we can’t keep up; or, if we do miraculously stay on track, we become smug and difficult to live with. We awake seeing only the schedule, not the day before us with all its opportunities and creative twists and turns.

Let the day unfold as it will. They’re only young once!
If your schedule is creating stress, I suggest hopping off the train for a while. Walk some interesting trails through the landscape of your children’s interests. Allow the days to unfold as they will. The results may be richer than anything you’ll reap from a demanding schedule.

Off the beaten trail – and the schedule!

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