Presenting…The Summer Schedule

 I was able to accomplish a lot after I locked myself in my new office and didn’t emerge for about four hours.

One of the things I created during that marathon organizing session was a summer schedule.

I’ve always heard that having a schedule and a routine can actually give you MORE time for other activities. Fun ones, like pursuing a hobby, working on a decorating project or reading for pleasure.

I was tired of being busy all day, but not really feeling like I got anything done. That’s especially true since we finished our first year of homeschooling.

So here is our schedule:

Nothing fancy – just a simple one page chart with the days of the week across the top. Since I tend to think in bigger chunks of time, I chose to break my days into three broad sections:  morning, afternoon and evening. I know me and if I tried to put a schedule together in half hour increments from the time I wake up until the time my head hits the pillow at night, I’d implode.

My advice is to simply do whatever makes the most sense for your situation and leave the rest.

There are five things that we each do upon rising in the morning:

  1. Make bed
  2. Eat breakfast
  3. Take care of dishes
  4. Brush teeth
  5. Get dressed

It’s only been one week since we started this experiment, but already my boys have this drilled into their brains memorized. Five was the magic number because they can use their left hand to help them remember, i.e., thumb is make bed, index finger is eat breakfast and so on.

Want to know what I learned?

Kids like structure. They find comfort and security in the predictable rhythms of everyday life.

And so do I.

An added bonus is that my kids have also fought less – not only with each other, but also with me.

Maybe it’s because I’ve spent a lot of concentrated time with them. Not sure. But there are significantly fewer squabbles in our home which makes me one happy lady!

After those five things are done, we continue with our morning routine. This usually begins somewhere between 7:30 and 8 a.m.

  • Bible reading/scripture memory and hymn
  • Character training
  • Chore
  • Practice instrument
  • School subject

When I look at this in print, it seems like a lot, but it honestly doesn’t take that long. We’ve been finishing up between  9:30 and 10 a.m.

To which I say, “Go play.”

Both guys are ready for some free play time at this point and I’m ready for a break, too.

They can play inside or outside until lunch time (depending on the weather) with a snack in there somewhere.

I use that time to start a load of laundry, check email as well as a few of  my favorite blogs. Or, I’ll write a post or work on a freelance project.

Our afternoon looks something like this:

  • Lunch
  • One hour of quiet time in separate rooms (mom, too!)
  • Free play
  • Snack
  • Pick up playroom toys (they don’t get to watch a show unless this is done)
  • Watch a TV show or video while I make dinner

Tom usually is home from work around 5:30 p.m. and we all eat together.

After that I clean up the dishes and we have some time to catch up on our days for a while.

My husband will sometimes take the guys for a bike ride (often one on one) or shoot some hoops in our driveway, now that the basketball hoop isn’t in our bedroom anymore.

Then the boys’ evening routine begins: quick shower (if needed), brush teeth, put on jammies, read a story and go to sleep between 8:30 and 9 p.m.

So that’s it.

Not too exciting, I know.

More detail than you probably wanted, I know.

But I thought that I would share what seems to be working – at least for one very average American family.

Later in the week, I’ll post a very yummy pancake recipe, so be sure to come back:)

Published in: on July 11, 2011 at 5:30 am  Leave a Comment  
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