Monday, September 24, 2012

Home Studies in the Evening Hours

School Books

In the old days, farm families worked hard on their land. There were plenty of chores for the entire family.  Yet, somehow, they managed to do some studying and schoolwork.  Since homes were not full of distractions (like television, video games and computers), studying with the family was a lovely way to pass the time.

Today, many homeschoolers use a strict schedule of starting school at 9 a.m. each day.  I used to do this when my children were little. As they got into the teen years, life became more complicated. It was no longer the sweet, slow-paced "nursery" phase.   In this modern day, we are also going to be constantly fighting to maintain a balance of using technology (being entertained by it) with learning, studying and producing.   This lesson must be learned by today's children.

In the last week, with the addition of a new baby in our family, I have been very preoccupied.  There has been more laundry, more cooking, and much more work for me.  This also means less sleep! (gentle smiles).  Even though this is a joyous time, I have been struggling with a way to keep up with homeschooling my 15 year old (John).  He needs to be reminded to do his assignments. He needs to be motivated and encouraged to do independent work.   Daily I have been trying new methods to get him on track. 

Tonight, I think I found a solution.  Our spending time together is centered around chores and school.  When we are together, it is when we are cleaning or cooking, or he is reading me his McGuffey or a Bible passage.   Tonight, even though we were both exhausted after a long day, we sat at the table to do his math lesson. We laughed at all the mistakes we both made. But this helped our analytical skills as we found the mistakes and re-solved them.  This is what quality time has become in our home - a time for learning. 

Life never lets up.  We often say that tomorrow, or next week, we will fix our routine.  Or when things calm down, we will get back on track. But life will keep throwing us something new to juggle.  The goal is not to wait until things are better, but to do them in the middle of the challenges. 

Right now, maybe I can't play cards with John or watch movies with him. But I can do school.  School became the fun.  We are fitting it in, the same way things were done in history; after a long day of heavy chores and hard work.  Our home studies are happening in creative ways.  They are happening in a simpler way, from a simpler time - by the hearth, with laughter. . .   It has become our evening entertainment.

Mrs. White

Oh, Let This Not Be True! -  Only Rich People Have Clean Houses.

Much Better to use these - Mother's Rose - Colored Glasses.

When There Isn't Much Money - The Homemaker's Despair.


Anonymous said...

Dear Mrs. White,

Oh, how convicted I was when you wrote the following: "Life never lets up. We often say that tomorrow, or next week, we will fix our routine. Or when things calm down, we will get back on track. But life will keep throwing us something new to juggle. The goal is not to wait until things are better, but to do them in the middle of the challenges." Oh no!

You see, these are my words to myself almost daily right now - my excuse for not being a better home educating mother. *sigh* So much has been happening here this year; 2012 has certainly been a challenge for us. It has thrown our schedule off, and our family life is suffering from it. Thanks to your gentle wake up call, however, I vow to begin taking things back today. I will strive to be prepared with responses to unexpected challenges, instead of reacting to them and letting them carry me away on the tide of panic. Thank you for your sweet reminder today.

May your day be productive yet restful. God bless your home,
Mrs. Skutt

LeAnn said...

I think your schedule sounds perfect for you. I can tell you are very organized and I appreciate that. I am more like a side tracked home executive.
Congratulations on that new baby. We just had our 3 great grandchild; a little boy. We are traveling up this evening to spend some times with them.
Babies are such unique blessings to us all.
Blessings to you!