As a homeschooler, I am always looking for that perfect homeschool rhythm—a routine that includes all the things we need to do plus lots of things we want to do, too, with a little space left over for spontaneous interruptions. A comfortable rhythm gives you motivation when you wake up in the morning, pulls you through the day in a predictable routine, and lets you wrap up your day feeling good about what you’ve accomplished. One of the best ways to find this rhythm is to anchor your days with rituals.
A ritual doesn’t have to be fancy and complicated. It doesn’t even have to be something you do every single day without fail—though, obviously, the point is to do it regularly. A ritual might be doing a series of yoga exercises together before breakfast, or taking your morning readaloud out on the back porch., or taking a nature walk through your neighborhood after lunch. It might be baking bread together on Friday mornings, or changing your nature display table every Monday. My kids and I have afternoon tea together—sometimes with cute little sandwiches and pretty cakes and sometimes just with cheese and crackers but always with whatever we’re reading independently. Shelli’s family watches documentaries together at lunchtime.
After tracking your time last week, you probably have a clearer idea of the natural rhythm of your homeschool days. This week, look for rituals that can help you anchor that rhythm. The most effective rituals are simple—if a ritual requires a lot of preparation or planning each day, it can be hard to do consistently. Rituals also work best when they’re meaningful and tied to something you and your family care about. You may not find the perfect ritual on your first try—that’s okay. You’ll learn something about what works and doesn’t work for your family’s rituals, and you’ll be ready to try something different.