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Planning - Live life with your kids - Issue 040
January 25, 2008
Hi! ....

Welcome to Live life with your Kids Newsletter!

Another week has slipped by and I can’t say that we have continued with our lessons. Josh and Jess, who are independent students, have been diligent with their studies but the week has suddenly disappeared and we haven’t completed a phonics lesson, a maths lesson or a typing practice with Nomi and Daniel!! But… learning has happened!
  • The boys spent time with their Dad cementing the floor of the garden shed/chook-shed
  • Jessica has had a week of cooking lessons since she took over every evening meal this week, including when we had visitors for dinner
  • Nomi has created two fancy dress costumes – Peter Pan for herself, and Captain Haddock for Daniel
  • Joshua has helped down on the farm
  • Nomi organized her birthday party – last week she organized the invitations and this week she planned the games
  • Daniel has helped Peter with maintenance around the house
And I am sure the list could go on. There has been plenty of activity, plenty of books and plenty of discussion on various issues, so learning has happened for sure.

Live life with your kids - that is what it is all about!

Beyond the Quote
Homeschool Encouragement

Preparation, I have often said, is rightly two-thirds of any venture.

Amelia Earhart (1897 - 1937)

What venture do you face this coming week? Are you prepared?

It doesn’t matter what it is – be it completing lessons, or cleaning the house, or planning a party, or a holiday away – our family ventures are much more successful if we put a little time and effort into the planning.

The new year brings fresh outlook and vision and often fresh challenges so it is a good time for planning. Regardless of what it is we are planning the same principles apply:

  • Know the “Why”, why are we doing this?
  • Confirm your idea fits in with your family’s big picture (vision/goals)
  • Know what it is clearly you wish to achieve
  • If it has a completion date, know clearly when that is

In much the same way as I look at my children’s hearts to plan the moral instruction I need to be aware of (Refer to Newsletter #37 Be Ready for Battle), I also look where my children are with life skills and their academic lessons and make priority choices on how we fill our day and on what lessons I plan.

My first priority is for those lessons that touch the heart. This is my main concern regardless of what else happens in the week. Am I prepared for Bible Study, Character Studies, and Moral Instruction? Why do I focus so much on these areas? Because it is through these times that we build relationships with our children; we show them our heart and we grow closer together. It is also at these times that we give them a glimpse of God’s heart, giving them an opportunity to draw closer to Him as well. Relationships first is a mantra that guides our planning.

Love the Lord your God with all your heart,
soul and mind, and with all your strength.
Love your neighbour as yourself.

Mark 12:30,31

This is a relationship first verse!

The second area that affects my choices is the priority need in my family. I am sure if I asked you, mother to mother, what your number one concern for each of your children were, you would have an answer. This has nothing to do with educational scope and sequences – this is because you know your child.

I spend time preparing lessons for those areas of concern. Should one child have a strong need I actually prioritise my children. To be honest I can’t always be intensely onto it with each of my children but I can do justice to one priority need. So when one child has a priority need, the others tend to work independently on the things that they can. The time will come when the other needs can be met.

For example, though I can list a priority for each of my children, Daniel’s needs are the strongest at this time. Most of my planning focus and daily attention goes towards meeting his needs. Over the years we have had focus priority time for each of our children but for now it is on Daniel. This doesn’t mean the others don’t get any attention, that they don’t get help when they need it but it does mean that the few hours I have for planning lessons, they go towards the priority focus.

Asking the “Why” question is a very helpful decision making tool.

  • Why are we planning to teach this subject?
  • Why are we planning to be involved in this activity?
  • Why are we planning to pick up that project?
  • Why, why, why?

If you don’t have an acceptable answer, you need to consider the path you have started down. It is never too late to change. One of the lessons I have had to learn is that it is okay to change. It is okay to change curriculum, it is okay to change my routine, it is okay to change a method of teaching. It is okay to change! It is much more important to stay true to the things that are on your heart and if you have wavered, you need to get back to what is important.

Website updates and Blog:

There have been no new updates this week.
You can keep up-to-date with any new additions by visiting Lifestyle Homeschool Blog throughout the week.

Or browse Lifestyle Homeschool by using My Sitemap to find an article that answers your family situation.

Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!

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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter Knowing that homeschool mums are busy with lots to read, this newsletter comes out in small portions – one portion every week.
  • Being a Deliberate Parent – Encouragement to continue in purposeful and intentional parenting.
  • Using Resources in our Life – Spotlight on a particular resource and notes on how to use this in your life (not in a school room)
  • Character Education – Each month we focus on a different character trait – The newsletter will include application for Mums, as well as seeing character training opportunities in everyday life.
  • Beyond the Quote – Take a moment to really think about that quote!
  • For those who are not into RSS feeds yet, the newsletter will serve to keep you updated with Lifestyle-Homeschool

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