Background: I remember waking up before 6 am on school days, waiting for the bus before the sun even came up. Sleep was something I valued so highly that I actually remember stating it as a reason I didn’t think I’d ever have kids. HAHA, JOKE’S ON ME!
As an adult, I spent the early years of my children’s lives waking up every hour and a half all night, every night–we were not blessed with good sleepers. My oldest then decided she needed to wake up at 5:30 am every day for several years. Finally, at almost 11, she has started sleeping in. Can you blame me for not wanting to wake everyone up early to catch a bus each morning? The tween is still complaining about our breakfast reservations at Disney last fall requiring us to get up early during vacation.
Granted, by 3 pm I’ve hit a wall and don’t want to think anymore so post-lunch schoolwork doesn’t fly around here, but even when the tween sleeps until 10, we can still get everything done before eating lunch. And if I get that extra time to relax and drink my coffee in the morning . . . can I really complain? I’m sure I could, but I won’t. One of my most favorite things about homeschooling is being able to adjust based on our natural rhythm. We’ve had periods where we started schoolwork immediately following breakfast, others when we had an alarm go off at a specific time to get started, and have tried a variety of different guidelines pertaining to delaying schoolwork (ie “if you play nicely with your sister without arguing, we can start schoolwork later!”). Currently, the girls have a list of acceptable activities they can pick from before schoolwork gets done. It’s not completely filled with educational options and I freely admit it does not ban all electronics (though we have done that on occasion!), but it includes things that help set a better tone for the day and is devoid of the things that send attitudes, focus, and patience levels down the drain. It may not work forever, but it works for now, and the beauty of homeschooling is that “for now” is all we need to deal with. When it stops working, we can change it!
Do you have early birds or night owls in your house? What time do you generally start schoolwork for the day?