So, where do we start? How can we learn to manage our time so that we can be productive and efficient?
What do you value? What do you want to accomplish with your life?
Our values are found in the Word of God. God promises us in Matthew 6:33 that is we seek His Kingdom first, He will take good care of us (my paraphrase!). We put the Lord first by making time to read His Word, pray, worship Him, spend time with His people, and share the Good News about Jesus with the lost.
If we put growing in the Lord and honoring Him with our life first in our personal life and our home school, we will experience His favor and blessing. So, keep the Lord in mind as you make your schedules and plans.
Priorities help us to put our values into practice. My priorities are quite simple:
- His People (including my family, my church family, and dear friends)
- The Lost who Need Jesus
- Everything else
What are your priorities? Always keep your priorities in mind when you are making a schedule.
Goals determine our plans and are based on our values and priorities.
"Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom," (Psalm 90:12).
Numbering our days simply means to realize how much time we have in a day, in a year, in a life. We number our days and we realize how brief life is. There is only so much time. We must use our time wisely.
What do you want to accomplish this school year? Think about your family as a whole and each child.
Plans have to be scheduled in. If your plan is to use phonics to teach your child to read, when will you use the program? When will you do the reviews and drills to cultivate your child's multiplication confidence? Will it just happen? Will you do it when you "feel like it?"
School plans for the year must be scheduled in. I schedule Math and Bible first thing in the morning every day. The other subjects are divided up in different time periods during the week.
I have found that rigid schedules based on hours don't work for me. I use block scheduling, based on blocks of time. I divide my days into: before breakfast, between breakfast and lunch, between lunch and dinner, and after dinner. This allows disruptions and interruptions without throwing me off my schedule. Okay, so we eat sometimes at midnight--but, hey, I'm still on my schedule.
Calendars, planners, and To-Do Lists are the most common tools we use for scheduling.
Calendars are important to have to keep track of the entire family's commitments, birthdays, and other events. A calendar should be in a highly visible place where everyone can see what's going on.
Planners are a homeschool mom's best friend. The planner I really like, created especially for homeschool familiesis the Intentional Planner by Sheri Graham. This planner has more planning sheets than you could ever hope to use. Use one of the weekly schedule sheets to plan your weekly schedule.
The final thing is a To-Do List to help you stay organized and on track. On this list put specific things each day that you need to do. Don't add the things that are already on your weekly schedule (teach phonics, multiplication drills, cook dinner, sort laundry). Instead, add one-time things (make dentist appointment, return dress, buy airline ticket, meet college friend for dinner) to your list.
A great resource for home management is Jesus, Fill My Heart and Home Bible Study available at Amazon. The E-book is available at PayHip.
As we make our plans and commit our way to the Lord, we can look forward to a successful and joyful life and home school!
Happy Time Managing!
Merey (Meredith Ludwig Curtis)