I am a scheduler. I like a plan. I like order. I like structure. My oldest agrees with me. The younger two do not. You can imagine the frustration to which this can lead, but yet we continue to have a schedule. Why?
- Simply put: I’m the boss.
At the end of the day (and at the start…and during), God made me mom. This is an amazing responsibility, but it also gives me the authority to be in charge. I am not their friend. I love them. I listen to them, but at the end of a discussion between myself and a child, “what Mom says goes.” Since I believe in the need for a schedule, the schedule stays.
- Schedule = Structure = Safety
Have you ever noticed how children push against rules, boundaries, and structures, yet they demonstrate the most happiness and peace when the rules, boundaries, and structures hold? They might not like getting in trouble, but children innately know that they need the adults in their lives to be the adults. Without structure, the world is a wide, scary place. Holding a schedule provides structure to what can be the overwhelming world of education.
- Someday their boss will appreciate it.
Seriously. There are not that many jobs out there that allow you to work whenever you want. If I do not teach my children to get up and hold a schedule, how will they magically learn this? Of course, there are stages to this. At a young age, I went in and woke them up. I kept them on track to make sure they got through their morning routine before school started at 0830. Gradually, I stopped keeping track and expected them to show up on time. Now, I don’t even wake them up. If they aren’t in the room on time, there is a consequence. My middle child is my late riser, and she is starting to learn to prioritize. If she sleeps late, she has to choose what part of her routine will have to wait till later to do (generally during a recess) because she has to enter the schoolroom on time. It’s all about the life skills!
Now, with all that in mind, I do allow for flex. If life happens…like the night the smoke alarms all decided they needed to be tested at 11 p.m. and sent our heart rates through the roof…I do announce that a late start will be acceptable the next day. I know. That excuse wouldn’t work with a boss, but I do try to remember I have time to solidify these lessons.
...a self-avowed "Wander Woman," homeschools her three children while traipsing the globe with her Army Chaplain husband. Her third greatest passion, falling below her love for God and family, is empowering other parents to teach their children.