31 July 2008

schedules -- routines

I hate the word schedule! It is highly stressful for me; just thinking of having every half hour allocated a certain activity makes me break into hives and absolutely refuse to be responsible! Well, a few years back I stumbled upon FLYLady. She is awesome! She has routines! ie: you wake up, make your bed, shower, get dressed (to shoes), unload dishwasher, start load of laundry, make breakfast, eat breakfast, switch load, sit and drink water... etc etc.

What I love about it is this - sure there's an order to what you'd want to do things in, but there's no set time, and there really is no set order - just get that list of things done before you start your afternoon routine, and then your bedtime routine. It is so freeing to be able to manage what needs to be done, but do it in a way that's flexible and willy nilly - like myself (except the flexible part, I can barely touch my toes).

Introducing Benji and Jenee'. children like routines etc etc, we all know that bit. Well I used to get so bogged down in that I had to be doing this and this and this. I know I say "used to" like I've overcome those feelings. Hardly. I tried to schedule out so many teaching moments, activities, crafts (which he usually snubs his nose at), and other productive things. I usually would burn out before the 1st day was over - and even before I was done planning.

Somehow I forgot to apply my routines to their routines.

So, I have my activities I'd like to get done with the kiddos each day, and then I have a slot for an "extra" activity - which is rotated throughout the week of 5-6 different things to choose from. I figure they can be done once a week and the other things are more important for everyday.
I have this system where it has a picture of what's going to take place and then on the back a smiley face (to show it's been completed).

I also have two papers at Benji's eye level to show his morning and bedtime routines.

So far, I use them more than he is aware of them. I haven't officially introduced him to these things, but his routines are becoming more and more predictable as I am being trained into a better mama. I feel so much happier when I see we're all three accomplishing so much everyday.
FYI: the cards in the blue pocket holder say: wake up, breakfast, free play time, music time, nap, lunch, planned activity, lesson, creative time, individual play time, dinner, family time, play with mommy, play with daddy, clean-up, bath, read, bed time. not all of those are done every day... with the play with mommy/daddy cards - we always set aside time to have special play with benji and jenee - like I'll play with him for 5 - 10 minutes a few times a day (not including my planned activity, lesson, etc) -- but with this card he gets an extra special time slot for us - 15 -20 minutes (or until we're done).
hope this might help anyone else out there getterdone.
oh, and with these they work the same as my routines. sure he usually eats his lunch after his nap, but the other things I can do them as I please with my goal being to get most of the cards turned over in one day. If not, who cares? just move ahead and don't look back!

1 comment:

Rubyellen said...

wow! this is great! i used to be a teacher and do this all the time, but i never thought of it at home... so wonderful! BTW, my name is ruby and i came here from grosgrain cause i saw you won... you are very crafty!!!