24 March 2016

Encouragement To Take a Homeschooling T.O.D

Before we start feeling joyless or seriously drained, or both,  with homeschooling responsibilities, my encouragement to other mums educating at home is to generate a more regular  'teachers only day' (T.O.D) for themselves - or as one of my adult nieces calls them, a mental health day ☺.

(For those who want to skip reading further, the links are at the end of this post ;-) )

For me a T.O.D doesn't mean that I'm indulging in heavy planning sessions, or heading off to the lake for a picnic - those are different sort of days, and ones I indulge in too - what I'm actually doing here is gifting myself with a day of personalised encouragement.  We all need encouraging as negativity, in ourselves or others,  can be such a joy in the journey stealer. 

We're in our tenth year of being registered to educate at home - and if I've learnt one small thing over the years; it's that I do need to be purposeful in taking days to refresh, evaluate, and realign (emotionally, physically and spiritually) - and the benefits are enormous.   So T.O.D's are mandatory in my educating at home life.  I keep extra days in lieu during my planning sessions so that we can use them where we want to.  Sometimes the children are just needing a down-tools-day too,  for no other reason than to rest, regroup, or be 100% delight led.

Here's how I ended up deciding a few T.O.D's are necessary for me, right about now:  as our weather starts to shift from summer to the cooler days of autumn each year we try to take a break from home, academic learning, the farmlet, business, and church responsibilities.  However, a series of events have required us to not take a break, but to stay put and step things up a bit in certain areas of life.  Now that doesn't really lend itself to anyone feeling very rested or full of joy; so, we've reinvented our living space with the mindset that our contentment and joy in the journey is still to be felt, and had... and we'll get to take our break away later on in the year  
One of those reinventions is trimming academic learning down to three days a week for a few weeks, and allocating the other two days as delight-led ones.  Lots of reading gets done on those days, and then Jay and Daisy return back to lessons feeling refreshed and ready to go again.  Funny thing is, Jay still chooses to do Maths every day, whether it's a delight-led day or not.
Woman Reading, Asta Nørregaard. (1853 - 1933)
With last weeks delight-led days , I purposely took two much needed T.O.D's for myself, and feel good to go again too.  Translated that means; while I'm listening to audio content, I potter away at things that are not regular 'must-do jobs' ie: outdoor tasks & cupboard sorting.  I like to chose things that I feel more like doing, right then.
Amongst my reading, praying, lecture listening, and re-evaluating T.O.D time - which brought about some needed home educating, and,  beyond my control  'tossing' - I also listened to a few homeschool podcasts I hadn't listened to before, and gleaned some extra encouragement from them. 

HSP 18 Carole Joy Sied: A Message for Moms     Carole is always encouraging!  If you’ve only got time to listen to one podcast,  I’d be recommending this one.

HSP 23 Susan Bauer: It’s Mostly About Parenting     I did appreciate Susan’s mention of homeschool mom ‘peer pressure’ and to just take adventure days.  Have to note here though, I’ll be 100% ignoring her Merton book suggestion as he’s too much of a ‘religious mystic’ author for me.  ymmv

HSP 13 Erin Hassett: Living the Large Family Life    Erin’s suggestions are good for mums of just a few children too.

HSP 22 Dawn Hanigan: All About Gratitude    Such a timely reminder!

(Do take a look through the other, HSP podcasts  ... I've already lined up two more to listen to during house cleaning chores tomorrow  ☺ )

ETA:  HSP 28 Durenda Wilson: Unhurried Homeschooling   Another worth while listen, for me :-)


reader19 said...

I'm enjoying the audio links you listed! It's good to hear other people who found Raymond Moore and Macaulay to be so influential in their ways too. I need to hear to have more fun and relax more often! Thanks for sharing with us! I'd love a cuppa with you today---much needed.

Sending you a big hug, dear friend!

Chelle said...

left a message in your space ♥
And nodding!! It is encouraging to hear other home educators share the same authors that encouraged me along in the earlier years too! Schaeffer's books had such a lasting impact on me as a home making mum.