We’re homeschoolers. This means we have the freedom to wake up when we want, go to bed when we want, start school when we want, take breaks when we want, and even do learning in the middle of the night if we want. Time is our friend and we take advantage of every moment we have. But, in all our lovely freedom, have we developed a fear of the clock?
I love living by routine. Ask anyone who knows me well. I enjoy having a fixed schedule and working within parameters. After having several kids and homeschooling for over ten years, I’ve needed to learn to lighten up. Just because I enjoy working under more strict guidelines doesn’t mean this works for everyone. Our family routine tends to be much more flexible than I would have originally preferred, but it’s what works best for our life style.
While I understand the need for a more laid-back learning style, there seems to be a growing trend within the homeschool community at large. Some of us have developed a hatred of our clocks.
I wonder why this is? We shy away from group activities which force us to be available at certain times. We stress if expected to be somewhere at a given time. We hardly ever administer deadlines to our children. And, most interesting of all, we avoid timed tests in our homes.
Now, I don’t expect everyone to homeschool in the same manner. Nor do I expect anyone to embrace a rigid timeline of learning. But, I’d be curious to know why some families feel as if the clock is our enemy. I also wonder if a complete abandonment of our clocks is a good thing…
Adults are constantly up against deadlines. Bills have to be paid on a certain date. Tickets have to be purchased by a certain time. Material can be time-sensitive. Certain jobs must be done within a given time-frame. Show up five minutes late and you miss your train, bus, airplane, or get fired!
Life shouldn’t be lived according to the clock, but learning to work with the clock might be of benefit. I don’t want my children to be stressed by confined learning times, but I also don’t want them to treat time with nonchalance. There are times they will have the freedom of time, but others when time is of the essence.
May they learn the difference between the two and make the most of the time they have.
Time to Chime In: How big a role does the clock play in your homeschool routine?