January 13, 2006

Resolutions for a Homeschool Mom

Teach us to number our days aright, that we
may gain a heart of wisdom.
- Psalm 90:12

Every day you waste is one you can never
make up.
- George Allen

I am working on #1 today (limiting my computer time). I am especially trying to limit blog-related computer time, although I certainly am not giving up blogging. I have been really blessed by some of your comments and am glad that there are a few of you who are benefiting from my blogging habits... but I can pretty much say for certain that my kids don't benefit from it. Right now, they are writing in their prayer journals, and we are about to say our daily school prayer... so I wanted to cut and paste my resolutions for 2006 in this post for you to check out if you are interested. I hope you have made some concrete goals for yourself and your family, and that you are seeking God's blessing and strength to succeed in keeping them!

Sprittibee's 2006 Resolutions

LIMIT
Distractions steal your day. Time is short. The computer is my biggest distraction, since we don't really watch TV or have cable, and we usually only watch a few movies on DVD each week either as a family or for school purposes. I plan to time myself on the computer and keep from using it when I have not gotten the rest of my priorities taken care of first.

SIMPLIFY
I am a keeper of lists, a pack-rat, a collector of paperwork, a pile-maker. I tend to make lists a mile long and it never feel like I have accomplished anything. I need to work on making shorter lists, keeping less in my to-do stack, handling mail when it comes in and setting aside 20 minutes a day for paperwork instead of letting it pile up… and I need to work on DEALING with a pile/project every week so they don’t multiply and leave me feeling buried.

ORGANIZE
I need to work on a more user friendly way to keep school books, library books, schoolwork, graded papers, paperwork for my desk, bills, and supplies. It is hard rearranging after a move, especially into a tiny apartment. Part of this goal includes getting my storage unit moved closer to where we live and getting a larger unit so I can unload some of the junk in my dining room and living room that has no place to live in this small space. I want to get a tall thin dresser with drawers (maybe one of those stackable plastic drawers if I have to) and put our schoolwork in the drawers for the week… it would be nice to have a Monday-Friday drawer system with folders that had worksheets, craft supplies, books, etc. for each day gathered into one place. A thin bookshelf would do well for this also (with baskets for the days of the week). It would eliminate the wasted time that we spend in between each assignment gathering supplies from different places and rooms in the apartment.

PLAN
This is my big goal this year… to plan my school units well in advance and get my menus planned for each week in advance. I want to work on better methods of planning and get ahead of myself for a change. I tend to be the "ADD distracto-mom", and although we do enjoy many interesting tangents and spur of the moment field trips, it is so much more fluent when we plan our days well in advance. I am going to try and set aside a planning time each day and use at least 30 minutes to work on menu plans, lesson plans, family goal planning, academic goal projections for the kids, and planning my personal and my children’s character-training bible study course.

SCHEDULE
My biggest flaw, if you ask me, is sticking to a coherent schedule. I go through days when I wonder if it is even possible to be on a consistent time-schedule. With my husband’s work schedule shifting between evenings, mid-day, and mornings, it is especially difficult to get our family into a daily routine. I am not sure my lists and efforts are worth anything – except making me feel like I CAN NOT succeed in this area. I am going to put this foremost on my prayer list for 2006! Any ideas and tips that you use to help you in scheduling your time would be welcome in my comments section (especially if you are a stay-at-home homeschool mom with more than one kid and cook most of your meals in the home)!

PRIORITIZE
I wrote about this already this week, but I’m working on making God first in my daily walk (setting aside time for personal bible reading, prayer journaling, devotional reading, and talking with God), my family’s life (making sure we attend church regularly and on time and being involved in the ministry there), and in our homeschooling (doing our devotional reading, bible reading, bible memory and lessons, and prayer time FIRST before all other subjects each day).

EXERCISE
This is probably everyone’s goal, and it is probably the goal that most people will fail to achieve in 2006. Each year before, I’ve promised to get into some type of routine, and every year I have come up with an excuse why I can’t follow through. It makes it more difficult for me that my kids are watching me more closely than other moms who may not be around them all day – and my kids don’t have an active PE program at public school to benefit from physically. We haven’t had the money to join a gym, but this year, even if we still can’t afford to join a gym, I want to get involved in some type of sport with the kids… and make an effort to add more physical field trips (like our recent rock climbing experience) into our weekly school. I also want to stay in prayer about this so that God can open up doors for us to be more physically active as a family. Even if we walk to the grocery store or the park (which are both closer now than we’ve ever had them in the past), that would be something!

COMMUNICATE
Another goal I have for 2006 is to be more of a friend to my friends. We tend to let life tick by like the hands on a clock, and we don’t make time for the people we love the most in life. I want to make a chart with all the friends and family we love and make sure to write or call a few of them each week in 2006. I’m going to do a smaller version of this for my kids as well as part of their school curriculum for the rest of the school year. They each have pen pals, friends from the former cities we have lived in, and cousins that they can write to improve their writing and grammar skills.

7 comments:

JenIG said...

what a great list. i can relate with your 'blogging time'. we don't have a TV either so it is easy for me to justify spending so much time on the computer because 'I'm not wasting it on TV'.

Anonymous said...

I love reading your homeschool blog! We are new to homeschooling and we just have a 2nd grade boy. I am using Abeka right now but you have me totally convinced to switch to KONOS! All of your posts do encourage me in my daily walk also. I do have similar resolutions for 2006. One big one is to "declutter". I actually put together two large boxes last night for the Am Vets to pick up today (of course I waited until the last minute to sort out what I wanted to donate but that is another resolution!). Thanks for sharing and encouraging us all in our journey. sue in Fl

Sprittibee said...

JenIG - Yes, I should be cooking dinner right now....

Sue - You don't have to give up A Beka entirely. :) We used A Beka Math and Language our first few years. This year, we didn't buy any curriculum at all (thank the Lord for Konos being a one-time expense), but hopefully we will be buying Math U See and some other Language program next year. Konos is great, I will admit... you won't be sorry... especially if you love hands-on learning and field trips.

maureenog said...

God bless you for making your list, but it's making me exhausted just looking at it! Then again, you are younger than me (it looks like from your picture) and I am just plain old tired.

Good luck to you in homeschooling and creating a balance in everything in your life! I have found it is not easy but definitely an ongoing process! And one that I do enjoy.

Sprittibee said...

maureenog - Awww, surely you aren't that old! Sounds like you are a seasoned homeschooler who just knows what is "worth" the effort. ;)

JuliaW said...

For a truly Christ-centered approach to scheduling, go to www.titus2.com and look at "Managers of Their Homes" and "Managers of Their Chores". These books have made a tremendous impact in how we run our home. If you decide to purchase MOTH, resist the urge to quickly skim the book and skip to the planning stage. This book challenges you to look at your own attitudes in the light of God's Word, and to pray and seek God's guidance throughout the entire process. I know it's been nearly a year since anyone has posted to this topic, but this is my first time stumbling upon it. I hope that this information will bless someone as I have been blessed by it.

Kimmie said...

May God bless your heart's desires. I am stopping to pray that He make your way straight and allow you to be a blessing to the others He will be placing on your path today (and then tomorrow and the next day...)

Kimmie
mama to 6
one homemade and 5 adopted

ps- for library books...we have a LARGE basket to hold our books- then another basket for the "finished books/to be returned". These are the only two places for books-I also put the library print out in my hoosier drawer- so I can be aware of the DUE date...which I also write on our calender. If your library does the card in the book...take one out and post it on your fridge or attach to your library card, as a reminder.

 

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