Back to school ideas for the Christian home school family – Routine
Stress and “back to school” seem to always go together. It’s even that way for those who home school. I know, we do it too. One of the beauties of schooling your kids at home is that you don’t have to follow somebody else’s schedule or fulfill anyone else’s expectations. That’s wonderful, and one of the things we love about it.
But that doesn’t mean that a “whatever” attitude about your daily school schedule is the best thing. If you want to make Christ the center of your home, you need plan your days so that you can be certain that He is. You should wisely determine your own schedule – one that works best for your family. It can help your family deal with the natural stresses that come with schooling. More importantly, it can help your family THRIVE in the midst of these kinds of pressures.
Basics of a good schedule
As you begin thinking about what your schedule should look like, I’d encourage you to consider these things:
- A regular rising time each morning. This allows everyone to start the day together, connecting, communicating, and preparing their hearts before the LORD.
- A regular bed time each evening. Of course this will vary with the ages of your kids, but regularity here will pay huge rewards in terms of productivity and sanity.
- Have a planned “start time” for your school day instead of just getting to it when you get to it. A regular start time discourages procrastination.
Benefits of a school time schedule
Arranging your school week with a wise, balanced schedule can greatly reduce the stress levels in your home in these ways…
- It enables you to keep first things first (like Christ being in the center of all you do).
- Everyone knows what’s expected and what’s going on.
- There are less surprises to deal with.
- You are able to ensure that all your students (and parents) are getting adequate rest.
Evaluate your “normal” schedule – why has it been the way it has been?
There are all kinds of stated and internal reasons for why we do what we do. Your school schedule is no different. Consider why you have been doing school the way you have?
- Do you feel pressured to do it a certain way? (Perhaps from the load of books and tapes you got at the last conference?)
- Are you feeling guilty that your kids are not keeping up with someone else’s kids?
- Are you feeling an unrealistic pressure to make sure your kids are top of the heap? Why?
- Are you being intentional about guiding and forming your children’s hearts, or is the intellectual focus wrongly outweighing that priority?
- Is your schedule the way it is because of deep, God-given conviction?