A simple weekly rhythm with kids

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Written by Kara Fleck, Simple Kids editor and Rockin’ Granola mama.

This is the time of year when our calendars fill up as the children head back to school and the holiday season looms. If we aren’t careful, the days can get a little crazy.

If you’re just getting started establishing a rhythm for your family, or perhaps if you are re-evaluating your days as you enter a new circumstance, my advice is to focus on what I call the anchors of your week: the times which center us, that we can count on.

When I was in elementary school, I can remember knowing what day of the week it was by what activity we had in school that day – music, art, gym, etc. I knew that the comfort of those rhythms was something I wanted to offer my own children in our home environment.

I want to share with you my family’s weekly routine. Keep in mind that we are a family of six with one parent working outside the home, one parent working from the home (and thus with the kids during the day). Our kids are ten, six, four, and one.  We also homeschool. So basically, what works for me might not work for you.  And that is totally okay.

Our weekly routine

Some parts of our week are guided by my household tasks.  I try to run all of our errands and schedule all of our appointments on the same day of the week. Having a regular library day helps us keep overdue books to a minimum and having a set appointment day helps with overseeing the many different care providers for a family of five. Knowing what day of the week I’m doing the grocery shopping aids in menu planning, too.

We have a rotating schedule of activities at home, too.

This gives me the best of both worlds: it breaks up the potential tedium of life with small children with something fun, yet different from yesterday, to do each day, and yet it allows me to go on “auto pilot” as far as my planning of each week goes as none of these things requires much more than simple preparation ahead of time.

The variety and the ease are what make this routine worthwhile to me as a parent.

Our activities rhythm looks like this:

  • Monday – cooking and baking
  • Tuesday – watercolor painting
  • Wednesday – coloring
  • Thursday – crafts/handwork
  • Friday – our Friday Night Nest game/movie night

These activities can (and do) happen at other times during the week, too. For example, coloring happens on a daily basis around here and so does cooking, certainly. But these are the days I am intentional and plan for.

Other weekly rhythms

We have also had unintentional things come up that ended up becoming a steady part of our weekly rhythm. For example, my son Max thinks the garage trucks that come down our street every Wednesday morning are the coolest vehicles there are. So, Wednesday mornings will usually find all activities in our household coming to a stop when the kids hear the roar of the trucks turning on to our block on trash day.

Some activities might only be a part of your weekly rhythm on a seasonal basis.  Right now we’re spending time every morning visiting our garden to pick veggies, but on the weekends we’re attacking the weeds and taking care of any other garden tasks.  Those weekend weeding sessions are part of our growing season weekly rhythm.

Other Possible Routines:

  • A phone call to Grandma and Grandpa
  • Saturday morning donuts
  • Date Night for mom and dad
  • Family movie and pizza night (we call ours the “Friday Night Nest”)
  • Play dates or play groups
  • Weekend sporting events
  • Music lessons
  • Church, worship

And, just like anything else, sometime life happens and the week doesn’t go according to plan. That is okay, too. I just try to pick up where we are and go on from there. Being flexible is another useful tool for a parent.

Remember, this is about adding some peace and some ease to your week, not about perfection.

Do you have a weekly routine?  How do you find that routine changes as the school year begins?  What things do you set as a priority?

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About Kara

Kara Fleck is the editor of Simple Kids. She is a small town mama, writer, knitter, bookworm, and hooligan. Kara lives in Indiana with her husband Christopher and their four children Jillian, Max, Lucy, and Amelia. You can find more of her writing at KElizabethFleck.com.

Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace

Comments

  1. “Remember, this is about adding some peace and some ease to your week, not about perfection.” — So true!

    I have found that remembering that my rhythm and routine is to serve the family not the other way around. Love this idea of days of the weeks. We have a pretty good daily routine, but I like the idea of weekly routines as well!
    Johanna @ My Home Tableau´s latest post: Finding A Rhythm to Your Days

  2. We by no means have a fully rounded out weekly routine but we do have some anchors. Church on Sundays and Wednesdays (my two-year old LOVES the nursery). Thursday grocery shopping, Friday night date nights after our kiddo is in bed, etc. I also have a cleaning schedule that helps anchor our days.
    Steph´s latest post: Six Reasons to Apologize to Our Children

  3. I love this general routine! I have been trying to figure out something like this for my kids come fall. We are extremely relaxed, and sometimes I think that it would be nice to have a little bit of a routine to follow throughout the week. Ours tends to be based on food and rest time though :-) Not so fun for the kids. Thanks for the ideas.
    Heather´s latest post: what i am eating #4

  4. I desperately need a routine. We just moved to a new state, and with 3 year old and 8 month old, our days have been anything but consistent. I need to implement something ASAP.
    Ashlee´s latest post: Food Friday – Tortilla Pizza’s with homemade marinara

  5. We are working on changing the routine back to a school-style routine…starting with going to sleep earlier!
    priest’s wife (@byzcathwife)´s latest post: Lupus & Sjogren’s: 7 Quick Takes

  6. Ohh.. I have routines and schedules, but LOVE the idea of a weekly rhythm.. I will be totally implementing this .. Thanks, Kara!
    Prerna@The Mom Writes´s latest post: The WAH Mom Juggling Act: Tips to Help When The Going Gets Tough

  7. This is one of the things I struggle with most. I made a list (a very flexible one!) for a daily rhythm two weeks ago, and I keep getting halfway into my days and then saying, “Oh well, maybe next week. I’ll try to start next Monday.” I used to be so organized (in the days “BC”) and now I can’t seem to keep it together. Ugh.
    Jeni´s latest post: Social Circles: A Social Media Plugin for Genesis

  8. right now it’s just monday soccer, tuesday preschool, wednesday grandma, thursday family day and friday studio day…i would like to center my week around baking and art, maybe music like you do…will think about adding that!

  9. I’ve found my kids function so much better with a weekly routine. Especially for my oldest son – it’s a must, for all of our sanity. Definitely interested in moving toward more f a year round schooling plan, and take breaks when we want, versus 3 months off in a row for summer.
    Kerry @ Made For Real´s latest post: Vacation

  10. This is just what I need to put into practice. Thanks!
    Julia´s latest post: Citrusy Shrimp and Avocado Pizza with Cashew Sauce

Trackbacks

  1. [...] A Simple Weekly Rhythm with Kids {Simple Kids} [...]

  2. [...] week I mentioned that our simple weekly rhythm includes a cooking and baking day.  Cooking together can happen at any time during the week, of [...]

  3. [...] 4. A Simple Weekly Rhythm with Kids School is starting, and Kara Fleck of Simple Kids addresses the quickly filling schedule by saying, “This is the time of year when our calendars fill up as the children head back to school and the holiday season looms. If we aren’t careful, the days can get a little crazy. If you’re just getting started establishing a rhythm for your family, or perhaps if you are re-evaluating your days as you enter a new circumstance, my advice is to focus on what I call the anchors of your week: the times which center us, that we can count on.” CLICK HERE for More [...]

  4. […] just sketch out a rough idea of what you’d like the day or the week to look like and try to hit those anchors first before adding in other details later? Or, at the very least, promise me you’ll do that […]

  5. […] am a mama who likes to have a general rhythm to her week  and her days, as I believe it helps both myself and the kids to have anchor points.  Planned activities break […]

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