What do you think of when you hear the term, homeschool rhythms? It could mean many things, but for each family, the homeschooling rhythms will be unique as they segue into personal school lessons and extracurricular activities. As you establish a rhythm for your family, keep in mind that it should never be a burden, nor end up as a forced schedule. It is meant to be a sequence of simple activities that is beneficial and frees the home teacher from constant decision making. The most significant goal in creating a homeschool rhythm is to use it as an aid in bringing quality to your family life.
Rhythms within each day, week, month, season, and year are an important aspect of the homeschooling family. The daily rhythm could be as simple as doing morning chores, eating breakfast and engaging in circle time activities before diving into schoolwork; taking a daily walk after lunch, before beginning the afternoon lessons; setting the table and helping with dinner preparations; and settling in for the evening and reading a chapter book together as a family. Weekly rhythms could consist of painting on Mondays, baking bread on Tuesdays, visiting extended family or friends on Wednesdays, enjoying family game night on Thursdays, and helping to clean the house on Fridays. The monthly rhythm might include taking a full moon walk with the family or choosing a specific day each month to do a service for others in need. The yearly rhythm might focus on seasonal festivals, holidays, birthdays and other special events. Perhaps your family enjoys sharing seasonal poetry or songs together, or reading stories and books that correlate with the yearly holidays and festivals.
As a homeschooling family, it’s important to live fully in the moment. However, maintaining a balance between the present moment and the scheduled activities is the key to a vibrant and healthy family life. An essential part of this balance exists between active and quiet times. It offers times alone and times to share with others. It also provides times to focus on the family, as well as work at building community with other families and community members who share similar values.
There is so much valuable information that has been shared on the In the Meadow blog regarding rhythms and homeschooling. In Amanda Witman’s most recent post, she referred to an article on her Part One post of “Organizing Your Homeschool Day”, called “Rhythms, Routines & Rituals”. This post referred you to another previous article (written by Liz Gardner), “How Do We Create a Rhythm That Works For Everyone?”. If you would like to read even more about homeschool rhythms, Part One and Part Two of “Crafting Your Homeschooling Rhythm”, written by former Oak Meadow teacher Amy Fredland, shares some incredibly insightful ideas and invaluable suggestions on the subject. To learn more about the rhythm of the learning process, I also highly recommend reading The Heart of Learning (particularly chapter seven on “Rhythm and Learning: Expansion and Contraction”), written by Oak Meadow founder Lawrence Williams.
Let us know:
What homeschool rhythms do you like to share with your family?