Schoolhouse Planner
October 29, 2014 Edition 

Scheduling -- Fitting it all in  

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Mercy Every Minute   

The Wuehler Family

How do I fit everything into one 24-hour day? Add to homeschooling my children (which I love), this job at the magazine (which is a joy), Bible study and prayer time (which feed my hunger), outside activities and commitments, to the more practical things like going through all the children's outgrown clothes and meal planning and cooking--I am way over my head in things to do.


Some days, it's beyond my comprehension as to how I am going to ever get it all done. The easiest thing to do is let it all go and do the same thing we always do when overwhelmed-- check out and do something easy. But then the guilt comes for not accomplishing anything and we are miserable. It doesn't have to be that hard. I have learned there are easy ways to do hard things. The hard thing of "too much to do" can be easily handled by a good schedule and prayer. We plan our ways and then let God direct our steps.


Schedules can be very useful tools, but we must guard ourselves from being so scheduled, we push aside all the teachable moments. Not only does a schedule give us balance, but we need to balance our schedule and leave room for God's divine interruptions.


Sometimes my best laid plans and schedules tend to fall apart in the implementation step. It's not because I am lazy, nor is it because I am disorganized, it is simply because I have children and I have interruptions. So should we throw out the schedules? No. I believe we should have a framework of order (as God reveals in His orderly creation) and a spirit of flexibility!


Just keep doing those daily scheduled routines as much as possible, but when you have to deviate from the plan, have a spirit of grace and an anticipation of God's divine appointments, and then forget what is behind and go on to the next thing on the plan whenever it's possible.


If you need help with scheduling, I know these articles will bless you:


Homeschool Planning Using Checklists and Schedules


Teaching Multiple Grades and Scheduling


Planning Your Years, Weeks and Days


Scheduling the Easy Way, by Terri Johnson


The 7-Step Process to Homeschool Improvement


She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness ... Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates. Proverbs 31:27; 31


Stay tuned: the November-December digital issue Editorial titled, "I Don't Have Time!" covers this topic and will be live on November 1st at



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Raising Real Men    

Homeschooling is great because we can plan our own schedule. We love being in charge of our days. That way we can adjust things to fit our family. Maximize our family time. Do what works for us.


The problem is that sometimes we don't do a great job of it.

We stay up too late, then sleep too late. By the time school gets started, it seems like it's soon time for lunch. Sometimes we can't even remember everything we're supposed to do, much less what the children are supposed to do. Some weeks we don't get nearly enough done.  


Over the years we've realized that there are a few things we really need to get done to keep things moving through the week. Maybe these will give you some ideas, too:


Have regular chore times. We have so many children we can't even remember who we told to do what half the time! Our solution? Have a chore chart with each child assigned to a particular job each day. That's not enough, though, because we are still too addled to keep up with whether the jobs are getting done or not. Well, we do notice if no one does lunch, but the other jobs? Not always. So, we have certain times everyone is supposed to be working, because even we notice when one child is reading while everyone else is working! For us, those are before breakfast and before and after lunch and dinner.


Always start school with devotions. Our policy is that if we don't have time for devotions we don't have time for school. Spending time with God as a family gets us off on the right foot and the whole day goes much, much better.  


Make sure everyone knows what they are supposed to do. When we let this one slide, let's face it, school slides. It's not enough to have a plan that Mom can see. Really. Instead, they all need a list they can check off. It helps them realize that there will be an end to the school day and that dragging out math is just going to make it longer. This is especially important for that distractible, emotional age--nine to twelve years old. It makes it a little less between mom and child and more something that needs to be conquered. You'd be amazed how much that helps!


If you haven't tried those things, give them a try. Tomorrow is a great day to start something new--or start it again. There are some things we need to work on, too!


Your friends,

Hal & Melanie


Got a 9-12 year old? Seeing anger, distraction, and moodiness? If you're in the Carolinas or Virginia, you can join us for one of our rare IN PERSON Boot Camp 9-12 series for parents of boys 9 and up. It's November 7th-8th and you can find out more here! 


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Let me just say up front: you CAN'T do it all AND you can't fit it ALL in. I'm not sure what it is about homeschooling moms and that fact, but most moms seem to fight it.


They, or I should say, "you," work so hard to try and fit it all in. You see an interesting book and think, I really should read this to the kids. You read or hear some curriculum expert say you need to cover "this" topic and think I can add it in between math and lunch.


Mom, you can't do it all or fit it all in, so deal with it. You can't read every good book, cover every single subject, and learn every cool instrument. You CAN help your kids enjoy learning (by not trying to cram in too much), however, which helps them desire to learn.


Just do what you can, fit in the most important stuff, like playing games with your children, and leave the other stuff by the wayside along with the guilt.


Have a great day with your children ...


And be real,




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We can't help you find more hours in the day (we wish we could!), but we can help you spend fewer of them planning your monthly schedules. If you've never explored the Monthly Checklists on the Pre-K/Elementary and the Middle/High School tabs, you'll want to check out this popular resource. Each checklist provides a snapshot of what you can expect to find on for the entire month.



You can use these checklists to help schedule your lessons or find ways to integrate more than one unit. For example, this month, Adam Andrews' Literature lesson and Marla Schultz's Lit Kit both focus on The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis. Combining them would make for a wonderful, in-depth analysis of the book and bring it to life through various hands-on activities.  


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Contest Corner 
For the month of October, 2014


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Crew Reviews


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