Keeping Rhythm

Is it possible to still have “rhythm” and unschool ? Yes, it just might look a little different from before.

Actually to be honest our rhythm has not really changed much. Our family has always kept a different schedule then most due to Papa’s work hours. So for us our families rhythm has never been what you would call normal :), we just found what works best for us. Unschooling works the same way we just changed a few things around.

For instance we still have the same sleeping hours, wash days, meal times, bath days on so forth. We always have even before Waldorf education.

Something that has changed the way we do lunches around here though, in a really great way, has been the introduction of the Monkey Platter

Each day the girls help me come up with the items using our food pyramid as a guideline. Miss Sky really enjoys making sure something from every food group is represented and it has been fun coming up with all the different ideas too. This is not “enforced” by the way it was actually Miss Sky’s idea to use the food pyramid in the first place. So why has this worked so great for us ? Well sometimes each of us is busy doing our own thing like reorganizing a playroom, playing a video game or playing on the computer and this way everyone can eat at their own convenience.

Papa wakes up first in our household so he has become the breakfast person(which he makes best anyway :)). So that just leaves me with dinner. I have previous posts on how we do dinner by taking a binder and separating it by season.

Being that it is summer most of our dinner recipes revolve around the grill and stove top(lots of stir-fries, tacos ,fajitas and salads). I have 2 weeks worth of recipes for each season and just rotate. So this is how our meals work.

After breakfast is when we do “circle time”. This is when everybody,parents included, gets to voice their opinion on the days activities. Being we are a 1 car family we need to plan “outings” in advance. So if someone wants to go to the library, or another outing it needs to be mentioned during this time.

Items that always seem to be mentioned daily ,that involve the need of others, like board games and reading aloud have found a place in our daily rhythm. Board games like to be played with all members of the family so we play those first right after breakfast to include Papa. Then we usually read together so that I can get started on what ever daily chores like dishes or laundry that need to be done.

So after reading the girls usually fall into doing whatever it was they wanted to do from the list. For example Little Sis is really into Animal Jam right now and Miss Sky is really into playing video games so one gets the computer first and the other gets the television. Then they switch to take turns. Meanwhile Mama is “always” an ear shot away for any questions or help that may be needed.

The only time this changes is when someone mentions they want to watch a program or movie on the Ruku or if there is an outing planed. Then if a person doesn’t want to watch the program (like Miss Sky has outgrown Dora and Little Sis really doesn’t like animal documentaries) that person gets their computer time. Again I am usually watching the programs with my girls and am available for help if needed.

So what about “me time” ? I have learned to be flexible :). Being a parent our children’s needs have always come first so this is nothing new.

Some days are busier then others, sometimes I don’t always get to have computer time when I want it but sometimes my girls don’t either. Sometimes I need to pay a bill or send an e-mail. Sometimes my girls play video games together (like right now). The thing is though since I respect their wishes and they “know ” they will get to do what they want when I am done, they respect mine. Also voicing  my wants during circle time has really helped.

I have really been getting in with the series The Tudors lately,thanks to the Middle Ages time period we have been reading about. This is a program I do not recommend for children so I usually am more than happy to wait until after the girls are in bed to watch. I also am reading books about Bloody Mary and Queen Elizabeth which can happen during the day when my girls are using the TV or computer.

I think remembering to always put our families relationship first is what has helped us most with our new transition.

Also I just wanted to add one more thing, what makes everything I just listed above unschooling (for us) is the fact that at any time my girls have the right to say no. Sometimes reading aloud may not be an option and that is okay :).

Wishing everyone a great week!


5 Responses to “Keeping Rhythm”

  1. iriefamily Says:

    Sounds great … thanks

    I’m working on our rhythm now … it’s tough sometimes and perfect other times. Depends on ALL of our moods.

    I’m still having trouble letting go. I’m not DOING anything about it … it’s just in MY head. But, it IS hard for me not to think that I need to plan some math activities or something. It’s also hard for me to sell some of our curriculum stuff or let go of the fact that we didn’t finish something.

    But, we ARE Unschooling. And, I’m trying to notice what we ARE doing and I’m trying to get us into a rhythm that suits all of our needs. We are also getting BUSY with our Homeschool activities … add in the library grocery and errands and our life is FULL!

    When does your husband work?

    Many blessings to you guys!

    • dkjsv05 Says:

      Yes we had to test the waters several times to finally fall into the rhythm we now have . I want to be as real about our journey as possible so I will say it has taken “several” months to finally be able to see everything my girls are accomplishing right now.

      Little Sis plays animal jam on-line and I have to help her type to other players and read their replies but since we have started she now can read and spell SO much on her own, not to mention how fast she is typing at 5. Same for Sky, she actually does more math (on her own) now playing games. At first I was VERY nervous she stopped wanting to read and spent a lot of time playing video games but I kept reminding myself that we are still deschooling and my goal this year is to make sure everyone is happy (including me :)). This has helped me TONS to stop thinking about what we are not doing. Now since we started several months ago Sky has been pulling the books off the shelf and did a science experiment without me even knowing until afterwards. Hang in there it will get better.

      Now as far as all that free time I have due to no longer having to plan out lessons, I am following my own interests. I am actually watching a TV series and reading books that “I” want to watch or read (yea for mom). Maybe I will finally learn to use my sewing machine who knows :).

      Peace for the journey,

  2. iriefamily Says:

    Are you paying for a subscription for Animal Jam or is there a free version?

    What video games are Miss Sky playing?

    • dkjsv05 Says:

      Yes there is a free version and both girls played that way for months(still lots you can do for free). I since have seen how much they were learning from this game and paid the $5.95 monthly fee.

      As for video games we went to Gamestop to purchase a used Wii (you can get a used one for $100 and can instant stream from Netflix not a bad deal really). Miss Sky realized with even purchasing used games we could only get 2 in our budget. So “she” made the decision to get a playstation2 because most all games are $10 and under (and lots $1.00 just because they have no cover).

      Okay now to answer your question :). Miss Sky LOVES Thrillville(you can look all these up on amazon for reviews and they all have an E rating) ,Kingdom Hearts, All the Lego games, The two of us are playing The Lion Witch and Wardrobe game(love it). Oh and Scooby Doo.

      Little Sis likes the Princess and Barbie games.

      If you want to get TONS of free computer games without any worry of your girls finding anything disturbing on-line then download Kidzui . It is awesome!!!! The girls can sign in to animal jam from this browser.

      Hope that helps,

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