What are the rewards of reviewing and revamping our homeschool schedule? A big block of time on Friday mornings.
Back when we first started homeschooling . . . thirteen years ago, Mondays were sacred. There were no coop classes on Mondays, so I was able to start each week off with a really great home focus. Then after a bit, Friday classes were flopped to Monday, and my attitude changed, I would have a great Friday to wrap up the week and start the weekend with everything neat and tidy. (That was back when we were just an elementary schooler and a preschooler with simple weekly outings, and school happened exclusively at home.)
Now we have a highschooler and a middle schooler, schedules are not so neat and tidy with the two of them homeschooling at the kitchen counter and out in the community. One of my January goals was to rework the weekly schedule to consolidate our “out-days” and our “home-days”. As much as possible, I am trying to overlap the kids’ schedules again. My Fridays will be mine again! (Well, half of the day is.)
My first Fun Friday goal was to get up and exercise, make some hot oatmeal with raspberry compote, write for the newsletter, and go for a walk. Everyone must have known I had the morning off, because I have had so many requests to fill it with volunteer work, meet to swap an item, errand requests by the family, but I have said “no.” I’ve added these to my other trips out, and today is sacred. It is my day to wrap up loose ends, make a treat in the kitchen that is my favorite, and to school at the kitchen counter without looking at the clock.
I love being home. Homeschooling for us was to build a curriculum of really great class experiences that just were no longer happening in our local schools; science, music, languages. To do this, and with husband’s encouragement, we chose classical education for in the home, and what we could not do at home, we targeted in the community to supplement. Over time, the great starts that we had, out-grew our home and the schedule reflects more time away than in our earlier years. (I stopped teaching math after algebra, son is now taking calculus at the local university. And it is hard to lead an orchestra of three, so we joined a chamber group for daughter.)
I know that I can’t go back to homeschooling at home with just a few outings each week, but I can take back control of the wild teen schedule and reorganize the trips that we take out. Double up the ballet (daughter)/swimteam (son) with groceries and recycling trip. Weekly schedule a post office run before piano, cancel if nothing needs to go out. And plan some empty space that will allow for some home projects (house and homeschool) to happen in the place that this all started . . . our home!