Monday, June 20, 2011

Tri-Moms: Routine

This week the Tri-Moms decided to discuss routines.  Kathi announced on her blog yesterday that she is expecting Baby 8 so I suspect her routine will be doing some changing!  I've written about my routine several times in the past few years.  I am a schedule and routine oriented person, but I am working at being more flexible.  For the first time in years, I feel like we have the freedom to be more spontaneous without suffering from multiple meltdowns (the children's and my own!).  This current combination of ages and personalities has made for the easiest atmosphere since my before-kids days!   For a peek at my daily routine, click on the following links :

Updated 2011 Routine  

Admittedly, since we moved at the beginning of May and since we are currently on a break from school,  my daily routine has changed again, but rather than hash that out again, I'm going share what our yearly school routine looks like.  (I didn't want to bore anyone more than once a year with my daily routine, but if there is interest, I can be convinced {wink} to discuss it. )

I knew from the beginning that I wanted to homeschool my children.  I've never been big on the idea of preschool, but we began some fun school-ish activities when Gavin was three or four.  We colored and wrote and read most weekdays and slowed the pace on the weekends. I didn't give much thought to a schedule, but when it was time for kindergarten (and declaring our intent to the state Board of Education), I began to think more on our own plans for a school calendar.  I have friends who school year-round.  (In fact, I think both of the other Tri-Moms are year-rounders.)  I have friends who take 3 months off every summer.  I know of another who works her school days into trimesters, taking time off every three months. 

But what was going to work for me?

I knew we are out and about more than usual in the summer, making daily schoolwork tough, but I also knew that with Brian home for ten weeks every winter that we would appreciate time together without the demands of schooling.  So we compromised.  That first year we stated kindergarten at the beginning of August and worked through the week before Christmas.  Then we enjoyed an extended break until the beginning of February. Our second term last until the end of May.  

Okay, I thought, this schedule is going to be perfect for us

It was ...until Benjamin was born in the fall of 2008-- Gavin's 1st grade year.  Ben was born in October and we managed to pull through until our December break, but when we started our spring term and Brian went back to work, life dissolved.  I was thoroughly overwhelmed with schooling and caring for an infant and a very needy, sensitive, hands-on toddler (Owen).  By the time May rolled around, I was never so ready for a break...and when July rolled around, I was in tears thinking about beginning school again in a month with two now in school, plus the infant and very needy, sensitive, hands-on toddler.  I asked Brian what I should do.  I desperately wanted to postpone school until September so I could bide myself some more time, but I knew that would make us less flexible in the winter.  

He wisely reminded me  that one month wouldn't make much difference, but that he would support whatever decision I made.  He gave one more piece of advice, though:  choose a starting month and stick with it.  He said that leaving it up for discussion every year would be too agonizing and too much pressure.  And so reluctantly, I made the decision to stick with our August start date and I am glad we did.  When school resumed in August, it went far more smoothly that I could have imagined

We are currently on our 2-month summer break.  I laugh, though, at what it looks like to not be in school at our house.   Gavin is still doing a page of math every Monday (to keep the material  fresh). We are furiously reading through pleasure books.  Two of the kids are working their way through Alphaphonics together.   We keep our minds busy and honestly, I rarely hear any complaints of boredom. 

Come August, we'll be back at the dining room table plugging away again-- this year with three school-aged children!

So what does your yearly school schedule look like?  Do you school year-round or take scheduled breaks?   How did you decide how to schedule your year?

OR... what does your daily routine looks like?    

Discuss it in the comments or write your own post and come link it up here.  (Take a minute to grab the Tri-Moms button located on my sidebar.) The other Tri-Moms, Suzanne and Kathi, are talking routine today, too.   Let's all encourage one another! 

Up next: Tri-Moms talk Bulk Shopping
July 5
Linky Hostess: Suzanne

Coming Soon:
July 19: Worshiping at Home
August  2: Summer Fun on a Budget
August 16: Clothing a Bunch

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