I have been reading through the Bible the past few weeks, and I am almost halfway through the book of Numbers. You know what I find totally fascinating and encouraging? The order and organization of how God set everything up! Every person had a place. Every person had a task. Every detail of how things were supposed to be done was spelled out.
Now that might not excite you, but for someone who loves schedules, plans, and lists, this is huge! Have you ever heard the saying, "A place for everything, and everything in its place"? I like that saying. But even better...
1 Corinthians 14:40 "Let all things be done decently and in order."
God is orderly. If you have spent any time in the first five books of the Bible, you must have noticed that. And He wants us to do things orderly as well.
I spent this summer break coming up with a plan. I haven't been able to have a plan or schedule in three years because of all of our traveling. Now that we are settled in our new home, we are all ready to have a routine and schedule. Our children thrive on a schedule. They love knowing exactly what is expected of them and what their boudaries are. (Makes me think of the children of Israel. I wonder how much they appreciated knowing who, when, where, and how.) Doing things orderly honors God. Oh, how I want to bring Him glory in our homeschooling! With that being said, here is our daily routine and organization:
They get up at 7:30 AM and start on their morning chore lists. Breakfast is at 8:15.
Our school day begins at 8:45 AM. The children must be in their desks, dressed for success... ready for whatever the day may hold. I use to be the "stay in our PJs all day" kind of homeschool mom, but the more I thought about it the less I liked it. Getting dressed from head to toe, ready for the day, prepares you for whatever surprises may come. No matter how perfect our schedules are laid out, interruptions will come. Ministry opportunities may arrive on the doorstep. Emergencies happen. It pays to be prepared.
At 8:45 AM, we begin with prayer. Not only does this give us an opportunity to get before the Throne and fellowship with the Lord, but it also brings a sense of unity and focus.
9:00 AM School Time!
I laid out what order their subject needed to be completed. Why? I am teaching three children. They each need me one-on-one occasionally. While one child is working on a difficult subject, I can help because the other two are working on things they can do more independently. It also helps that the subjects they need the computer for do not overlap. Two of my children also do a couple of subjects together. Having a schedule helps make this work.
The times posted are times when they must finish. If they finish early, they can go ahead and work on the next subject.
Each child has a cubby and baskets that contain their books and school supplies. They pull down their baskets and get to work... following the order of their schedule.
When they finish something that needs to be graded, they set it on a table behind my desk.
I grade it when I am not assisting a child with school. When it is graded, I enter it in my transcript program.
I designed this program in Excel. When they reach high school, I enter the grades and it automatically updates their transcript, GPA and all. Nice and simple. When they are finished for the day, it all goes back in their baskets and in their cubbies.
The school room stays neat and clean in case we have dinner guests or unexpected visitors. We can use the school room as a second dining room or play room if needed.
Don't let the schedule and organization fool you into thinking we live a rigidly, structured homeschool life. When opportunities come up, we take them! We love new adventures! We love thinking and learning outside the box. But we can participate in those adventures and opportunities without worry because I know exactly where to make up for it in our schedule.
I love learning to homeschool decently and in order...
And, trust me, it is a learning process!