In the midst of so much change and restriction it can be tempting to throw internal family structure to the four winds! After all, the children can’t go to their regular classes and activities, they aren’t getting the chance to play with friends and they will probably be happier if I just let them have an extended spring break!
Sadly, they will quickly grow bored and discontented without some structure to their days and we, parents, will also find ourselves frustrated as the whining and arguing tend to increase when the children don’t have a purpose for their hours and days.
The truth is that we all have a desire for order and purpose in our lives and uncertainty makes us anxious. As image bearers of an orderly God we imitate Him as we bring order to our lives and this is especially the case when outside circumstances are chaotic. So my Facebook and Instagram are full of decluttering challenges, people teaching classes on gardening or bread making, ideas for schedules for the children, chore charts… you can now find almost every kind of organizational scheme you can think of.
So how do we choose what is best for our own families and ourselves in this time? I think we try hard to stick to what we already had with some adjustments as needed.
For us that means that Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are our “long” school days. We begin at 9 am and have classes until nearly 2 pm with a break for lunch and handwork and some time spent out of doors. The littler children don’t go as long, and the bigger children do some of their classes by Zoom instead of in person.
Tuesdays and Thursday are “short” days- Math, Bible, and copywork always must happen but the other lessons are the homework from the previous day and school takes about 2 hours if an effort is put into diligence. Then time may be spent in creative pursuits, running around or digging enormous holes in the backyard and so on.
I am still adjusting things a bit day by day as the outside situation changes but the structure of knowing what comes next comforts the children and I as we pursue our callings as students/disciples and mother/teacher.
What are you finding that you need to tweak in your daily routine?