There’s been something just not right in our homeschool lately. We’ve got a good rhythm down, our routine and curriculum all sorted out, and we’ve been plugging away at our work through the long, dark winter months. We’ve been consistent and diligent.
But somehow, something’s still not right. We’ve been checking off all those little boxes alright — but we’re tired. Weary. Rushed.
So, what’s missing? What happened?
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We’ve been doing Morning Time in our homeschool from the very beginning. We love Morning Time! Over the years we have explored beautiful works of art & music, sang favourite hymns and playful songs, been introduced to Latin in a fun and gentle way, memorized poetry, math facts, and Bible verses … the list goes on!
Making Morning Time a Priority
But even though we love Morning Time, we’ve been doing it for years, and I’m convinced that it’s an important part of our homeschool day, I slipped up.
You see, I let myself believe the lie that productivity and successful homeschooling means checking off boxes.
I let myself believe the lie that the value of education lies in academics.
And I let myself believe that skills and knowledge were more important than souls and relationships.
While I would never have verbally agreed that of those above statements are true, I WAS declaring them to be so by my actions and attitudes. Morning Time had slipped in my priorities. I was skipping it. Cutting it short. I had even used it as leverage, “if you guys insist on dawdling over breakfast, we’re going to have to skip Morning Time today”.
I was showing through my attitudes and actions that Morning Time was less important than math, phonics, and spelling. That cultivating an appreciation for beauty was an “extra”. That having my children “keep up” with their public schooled peers was more important than nurturing their faith.
I was reminded that:
- Morning Time doesn’t have to be a time-consuming affair to be worthwhile. Even on busy days, we can always squeeze in time for a short reading, a hymn, and prayer.
- Being consistent with Morning Time shows my children that what we do during this time is important.
Make no Mistake, We’re Better Together!
Although I’m not new to Morning Time at all, Better Together was a big encouragement to me to stay the course. It covers all the basics for newbies, including answering all the whys and hows of Morning Time. It’s also full of ideas for resources, planning, and subjects to include. There are “Morning Time Snapshots” or personal stories from homeschooling mamas of all types, which I found particularly inspiring and really helped me have my lightbulb moment.
It was these snapshots that reminded me that my Morning Time doesn’t have to look like anyone else’s. I was also reminded of the fruit that I’ve already seen borne by this time together. The word of God hidden in our hearts. Seeing my kids singing hymns happily in church, long before they are able to read and follow along in a hymnal. A growing familiarity with great composers and artists.
Thanks to Better Together, I’m comfortable to again shift my focus from the traditional “3 Rs” to what Pam outlines as Morning Time’s 4 Rs: Ritual, Reading, Recitation & Relationship.
Don’t believe the lie that academics trump relationships. Don’t fall into the trap of rushing through the best part of your homeschool day, all for the sake of checking off boxes or keeping up with the Joneses. Don’t make the same mistake I did and end up missing out on all the truth, beauty, and goodness that we can experience with our children when we rightly value the role Morning Time plays in our homeschools.