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Teaching our Children Time Management - Live life with your kids - Issue 077
October 31, 2008
Hi there! ....

This week:

Thank you to those who wrote me notes of encouragement while I was not well. Being sick gives you a good lesson in life. Not only a reminder to eat well, exercise and sleep well but also that life goes on! Though I wasn’t up to giving consistent instruction to my children, they learnt. Though I wasn’t up to blogging, life goes on! One of the things I was aware of is the seasons of life, and how things change as your children grow up. The children were able to look after me, the house and themselves and it was a blessing. Then there was the other side - when you are resting and life is going on around you, you get to see gaps, or needs in your family and you have time to ponder how to address those! It is always good to see the positive growth as well as the so called “negative” needs when looking at your children and how you are training them.

Live life with your kids!



Family Life is a Resource for Education
Teaching our Children Time Management


Year after year the top New Years Resolutions are to do with time management. We want to set clearer goals, we want to live by our priorities, we want to stop procrastinating, we want to be better organized and as homeschool mums we want to do better with our routine. Time Management is very much a buzz word in today’s society. Imagine how well served our children will be if they master this skill in their youth.

Family life is full of opportunity to teach our children to use their time wisely. First of all they need to be aware of time. Time is actually a resource that we use, much like money, except money is tangible where time cannot be touched; time is hard for children to understand. Using a timer to define the measure of time is a helpful thing; children will start with understanding 5 minutes, 10 minutes, half an hour, an hour. When you have set “times” in your daily routine, such as chore time, reading time, bath time, you begin to establish the pattern that we use our time purposefully.

Parents are so used to managing their young children’s time that it is easy to forget to pass this responsibility onto them. Our children need to practice this skill of time management, as much as they need to practice any other skill that we teach them. Initially we model time management for our children. We know our goals, we have plans, we make decisions based on priorities. Our children may not actually see these behind the scenes aspects of time management but they will see to-do lists, daily routines and diaries.

The next stage is to teach it. We teach time management by making the children aware of the daily decisions we make in order to use our own time wisely, but also in guiding them to be aware of their own time resource and how they are going to use it. I have found giving my children a to-do list, a daily schedule and a diary has given them a hands on opportunity to become responsible with their time. At this stage, I am still in control of their time, their priorities and their decisions, and yet as they see their commitments, projects and assignments recorded in their own to-do lists, routines, and diaries they begin to make the connections that this has to do with their life, not just something that their parents do.

The final stage is where we expect them to manage their time. This comes after years of practicing. Managing their time covers all sorts of lifestyle skills:

  • what time they go to bed, what time they wake up
  • how they spend their free time, what do they do when waiting for people or events
  • how they organize their study schedule, or any given task for that matter, to be efficient and effective
It is unlikely that we will give our children the responsibility to manage every aspect of time in their life all at once. It is a gradual process but a process that must start with us being aware that this is our ultimate goal.

Though we can set goals, make plans, and determine to do well in the area of time management the bottom line is self discipline.

Self discipline is where we
choose to do what is right
over the desire
to do what we want.

This is the character challenge when it comes to time management. We face it in our own lives, and our children face it in theirs. As most character issues in our life, it will be overcome little by little, step by step, day by day.


Website Updates

Time Management Tools for Children These are the tangible tools we can get our children to use as they learn these valuable life skills.

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Until next week

Belinda Letchford
Living life with her kids in Australia!


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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter I know homeschool mums are busy with lots to read, so I have divided my newsletter into four sections and you will receive one section a week; short but regular newsletters!
  • Be a Deliberate Parent – Encouragement to continue in purposeful and intentional parenting.
  • Family Life is a Resource for Education – Spotlights on a particular aspect of family life so we can see the natural opportunities available to us in educating our children.
  • 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.
  • A Homeschool Thought – Discussing homeschool issues

The newsletter will also keep you updated with all additions to Lifestyle-Homeschool

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