Your schedule will be a guide you will follow in your efforts to meet your goals when things go as smooth as a well-oiled engine…and when the train runs off the track! Creating a workable schedule takes planning, perseverance and flexibility; but it doesn’t have to be complicated.
So all of the materials you purchased arrived in the mail. Now what? Give yourself time to sit down with pencil and paper and create a schedule. Whereas “record-keeping” refers to documenting events that have already occurred, for our purposes a schedule is a timetable created in the planning stages to meet your goals. If you haven’t considered what you hope to accomplish — your goals — we encourage you to go back to the planning stage by developing your approach. To start, keep these “schedule keepers” in mind:
The habit of routine. Schedules are much simpler to keep when everyone knows in advance what to expect. Once your children are accustomed to starting at 8:00 a.m. each day, for example, it will be much easier to avoid disagreements and balking each morning.
- Need a Do-Able Routine?
“By setting up family routines, we take away much of the daily stress and pain of deciding who does what, when they are to do whatever, and how much they are to do. Routines are simply a MUST! Our children have struggled at times when the routines were not clearly defined OR were in total chaos. Likewise, I have felt the frustrations that come along with constant decisions to be made or the pull of constantly having “extra” things to think about that could be just part of the routine, leaving my mind to think of more important things!” Planning help from Cindy Rushton.
The unanswered phone. Nothing can throw off a schedule faster than an extended, unplanned telephone conversation. Ah, yes, the joys of answering machines!
A can-do attitude. Someone didn’t get enough sleep the night before? Your child have a bad case of the tired-and-grumpies? Rather than let a sour attitude prolong math, which drags into language, which flounders into history, before finally sinking into science — address it! Encourage the discipline of a “can-do” attitude.
Reasonable boundaries. What are your lesson hours? Determine the times you would rather not be interrupted and let friends and relatives know. Most will be happy to call or visit during more convenient times.
The unplanned moments. Some of the best educational moments are those that were unplanned. While a schedule helps us stay on track for meeting our goals, the most useful schedule is a flexible one that allows for children to be children, moms to be moms, and homeschools to be homes.
- Can a Scheduled Mom be Spirit Led?
“The schedule is a tool the Lord Jesus has given me to help me to accomplish what He has called me to do—it is a part of my life being Spirit led. That means I am looking to the Lord for what should make up my schedule and how long should be allotted for each activity, not only for me but also for each of the children I am scheduling. The schedule is also flexible, allowing me to accept the changes that the Lord brings into a day that were not a part of the schedule.” Encouraging words from Teri Maxwell.
- Commit Thy Works Unto the Lord
“What a wonderful answer to all that grappling of mind! Instead of sitting around thinking, thinking, thinking, if I simply commit my works, my plans, my children, my day, my moments, every choice completely unto God, HE will establish my thoughts – He will guide, lead and conform my thoughts to His will. Then, all shall work out according to His perfect will.” From Jeannie Fulbright.
- Homeschool Management Tips!
An extensive list of practical time management tips from Tamara Eaton.
- Intentional Homeschooling or Falling Through the Cracks?
“All things that need to be done don’t get done unless we are intentional about them. What are those things you really want to do this year with your kids? What are those things that you say you want to keep as a priority in your homeschool? What about that quiet time with the Lord you wanted to keep having? None of these things will happen unless we are intentionally making them happen. Good intentions mean nothing unless those good intentions become intentional actions. Intentional actions mean nothing if they don’t line up with what God desires for our lives. So, if we know what He desires, we must start walking in those things.” Article by Deborah Wuehler, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine.
- A “Plan” for Nature Study?
“So, somewhere in the last three years, I began to suspect that the plan I needed for this venture, homeschooling, was perhaps NOT to be found in my planning sessions, but in my devotion sessions.” Michelle Duker explains that the perfect plan may not be the one you make.
Reviews, articles, how-tos, and other scheduling helps.
- The Scheduling Key
“It is common for me to be asked how I manage to homeschool, to be a wife and mother of a large family, and to take care of my home. The answer is easy. I use a schedule. This is the mechanism the Lord has directed me to use for budgeting my time. It has been one of the greatest practical blessings He has given me to enable fulfillment of the responsibilities He has put into my life.” Teri Maxwell details the benefits a schedule can provide us as we seek to be better stewards of our time.
- Too Busy?
“Where ten years ago we were the ones looking at the system school parents and shaking our heads over their tendencies to over-schedule their poor kids’ lives, today you see large numbers of homeschoolers doing the very same thing. As adults, we grouse to one another about life being crazy and never feeling like we have time to breathe anymore, but as homeschooling parents we’re teaching our children that this kind of lifestyle is acceptable and must be endured.” Advice on avoiding over-scheduling from Tammy Cardwell.