The start of a New Year is a natural time to reflect on the past and what it has taught us, to consider the present and how it’s working for us, and to make plans for the future. In terms of my attempts to live a more Simple Life, I have listed some goals in terms of sustainable living. However, when it comes to home life and our daily activities there is just one resolution I would like to make this year: spending more “sit down” time with my children.
As a homeschooling mum with a small home-based business you’d think I’d have plenty of time with my children. And I do. I’m there for the runny noses, the spontaneous snuggles, changing of clothes, mediation of disputes, and all sorts of other moments that mark the precious years we have at home with our young children.
Aside from being a mum, I am also a homemaker. This is a job that, surprisingly, I find very fulfilling and enjoyable (if you told me that 10 years ago I’d have screamed in denial). And, as any homemaker knows, there are always things to do around the house and never really enough time to do them all. Being blessed with children who self-entertain for the most part, it is easy for me to spend an entire day without sitting down to play, read, or craft with them (thank goodness for our bedtime routine which, although exhausting some nights, guarantees special alone time with each child). And this has become particularly relevant with regards to my Daughter, since she isn’t attending any weekly classes this term.
And so I have decided to make a concerted effort to put down the apron (kidding; I only wear an apron when I’m washing dishes in my pajamas!) and do some homelearning projects and activities with Daughter, especially when Son is at preschool 3 days a week. Today, I introduced her to lapbooking (see this blog for sample lapbooks) and we got a great start on a lapbook about Reptiles. I’ll post about it when it’s complete.
I had a wonderful time and the house didn’t seem any worse for the time I took to spend with her! Truth is, she is growing and maturing as a learner and I need to start paying closer attention to what she is doing, both for the reporting requirements of our program and also because it helps me to facilitate her learning by directing her to resources that support her current interests.
warning: mini homeschool rant —> Folks who don’t understand unschooling often believe that child-led learning means the parents don’t do anything. Far from it – an unschooling parent is involved in their child’s learning by sharing the experience with them and by seeing where the child is going and providing the resources, concepts, and experiences to enrich their learning experience. We assist, we facilitate, we suggest, we share…we just don’t control or direct.
And of course, there is the most important reason of all to spend more sitdown time with Daughter: because learning with our children is a fun and wonderful way to get to know them and to further strengthen the relationship with have with them.