Each Friday, at least for the foreseeable future, I will be sharing a blog post from the past. These will be posts from other places that I have retained the rights once again, or from this blog. I hope you enjoy these entries. I know they are ones that have made me smile.
This post originally was posted August 5, 2012.
Planning. I have one of those love-hate relationships with it. I love it when it is done. I even sometimes enjoy doing it. I hate it when it isn’t done and when it isn’t done on a timely basis. It is just one of those nuisances that we homeschooling moms have to endure over and over again. You know the definition of insanity, right? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. That is what I basically think about planning. It’s insanity.
Usually I am a very organized person when it comes to planning our homeschool. It is really quite sick. I fell into the plan out everything mode back when we began. It was because I honestly had no clue what I was doing and having some sort of plan gave me the false security that I knew what I was doing. It also solved the questioning looks asking me if I knew what we were doing. By all appearances, I was a master. I had a syllabus for each subject that broke out our studies by week and by day. I did it in a spreadsheet program and then I printed it out and bound it. It was at least 6 inches thick. Can we say overcompensation? I know you think I am exaggerating. I’m not.
The next year I purchased a planning software and I have used it the past few years. At first, I spent weeks breaking down each program and inputting lessons into the program under lesson plans. Then I could go in and schedule it all out. This program actually saved me a bit of my sanity when we started high school. I knew we had this.
The second year that I used the software program, I also started using workboxes. So I prepared things each and every night and my son worked through his workboxes and when he was done, school was over. This worked really well for a couple of years. We ditched the workboxes when we started high school. He just sort of knew what to do each day and would ask me and it worked.
This year, I decided we would try to turn things over to him a bit more. I decided to just give him a planner and have all the work that needed to be accomplished for the week listed and he could do it as he desired. Of course, I would keep a sharp eye on it and if he wasn’t getting things done, then I would revert back to some other method. This is what I thought would make for a good year. Of course, this means that I would have things planned out somewhat in advance, at least by the week. Sounds great, right?
Here is the situation. We start school in less than 3 weeks. I have not cracked open a single book to plan anything. I haven’t organized our school room. Last year’s materials are still on the shelves and need to be retired and moved to other shelving or sold. I have no kitchen table. It is buried somewhere beneath oodles and oodles of papers and books and materials. Our house still looks like a homeschool threw up on it. Did I mention that we start school in less than 3 weeks?
Part of this is because I began having some vision issues earlier this year, and well, the thought of planning and organizing has made me shudder. It is hard to organize and plan things in detail when you can’t see very well. So I have put it off. I am happy to say that I have had some God miracles lately and the vision issue will not be an issue at all very soon. But did I mention that we start school in less than 3 weeks? I am ready to hyperventilate.
Of course, I have tried to reason that by not planning anything, I am going to make things super exciting. The only saving grace is that I do know what materials we are using. I was a little bit OCD and we planned out a basic outline of our high school for all 4 years. So I have a spreadsheet with subjects and materials to use. And I do have most of the materials. I am currently waiting to get my hands on one last item as soon as the publisher has it available. They are a smidgeon behind. The good news on that is that I have the first part of it, so we can start. I just can’t plan out the year. Not that I was planning on that anyway. Where would the excitement be? I am doing us a favor, right?
The other day I was attending a party on Facebook. Yes, that is right. I don’t have any time to plan, but I have time for Facebook parties. Go ahead and judge me. I am secure in my organized chaos. I think. Anyway, there was a question asking for suggestions on organizing and small spaces. I refrained from sharing my new brilliant plan of just flying by the seat of your pants. I wasn’t sure it would go over so well. I just didn’t think that everyone would see the brilliance of my new-found genius. However, someone shared that you should color code your kids. She meant by milk crates. But for a moment I fantasized about actually color coding the KIDS to keep them straight. How brilliant would that be? I thought you could just say, “Hey red. Cut it out.” Or “Blue, get to work.” No more name stuff to get in trouble for when you go through the list to get the right one. We could start a new homeschooling trend, right?
My former organized self shudders at my current metamorphosis. She hangs her head in shame. She will most likely crack the whip and you will find me hunkered over my computer with pens and colored pens and highlighters and paper, planning like crazy this coming week. I will emerge victorious and my family will once again be in awe of my talent for organizing our school year. My greatness will rule supreme. I will be queen. And then less than 30 seconds later, they will ask me what’s for dinner.