Plan space and time
In all your planning, plan space without plans; plan time without agenda.
Leave open time.
Allow empty space.
“Waste time” after you finish one activity before rushing into the next one.
A little mindful neglect is a good thing. Choose not to supervise so closely. Choose not to be responsible to stimulate everyone.
Do not worry about squandering the sunshine or the afternoon or the toddler’s nap.
If you unschool, back away from your auto-didact. Don’t hover to prove to yourself that learning is happening.
If you are met with pleas for something to do…
If your children get restless and frustrated with space and time, move to the outdoors. Let the big universe supervise and entertain. Go with them.
You might try the “do nothing” stance with them. Try this:
Get under the sky—where you can see it.
Everyone, stand with feet shoulders width apart.
Let your arms dangle next to your body until they feel as though they are light and floaty. Rotate your shoulders a couple of times to relax the upper body.
Imagine roots going out of your feet into the earth, like a tall tall tree. If you have a tree in your yard, stand beneath it.
Then inhale deeply. Close your eyes and slowly exhale. Once you feel rooted to the ground, look into the sky and imagine the big expanse of the universe surrounding you. Know that you are connected to it, belong in it, that you are moving through it.
Small kids (who will not want to stand still!) can wriggle their bodies, stretch their arms over their heads swaying back and forth like branches in the wind, can jump in place, can shout.
Let each person take that moment to ground themselves, and then allow for space—time. Everyone can go on with the day as they choose for a little while…until the recharge is complete (whatever that looks like).
If your kids are squirrelly and you are anxious, if you are all racing from one thing to the next, know that you might have forgotten to plan for down time, for nothing time, for no agenda whatsoever.
In that space, one child might play a video game. Another might listen to music. Another still might bake pumpkin whoopie pies! Let the space generate an unplanned enjoyable activity and validate to yourself that this, too, is all a part of your homeschool.
Deep breath. Slow exhale. Ahhhhh. Hmmm. That feels good. I’m going to sip my instant coffee with cream now and follow my own advice.