Monday, June 16, 2008

Orderliness

We spent about two weeks learning about and practicing obedience. The children seem to be grasping better the need for them to be obedient. It's not so much that they weren't obedient before, but it always seemed that they were obedient in their own time. They are remembering now that when they are directed to do something, it must be done immediately and not when they're ready to do it.

We still review the obedience character trait ever few days, but we have now moved on to orderliness. I just cannot abide having my home disorganized and messy. A little dirt I can handle, but even that will get to me if the crumbs are crunching under my feet and I see dust bunnies everywhere I go.

Anyone who has homeschooled for any length of time knows how hard it is to keep on top of keeping your house clean let alone tidy. It is a never ending battle. When you homeschool you not only generate the messes of an average family, but you end up with books, books, and more books. You also have huge piles of papers, time taken up in experiments, lesson planning, marking, discussing any difficulties with the principal (Dad), etc, etc. The children are with you 24/7 and forever have questions and things they want to show you. The poor house never gets a moments peace! :-)

In and of itself, orderliness is an important character trait to have. Orderliness is "arranging myself and my surroundings to achieve greater efficiency." I am a fairly orderly person, but sometimes things get out of hand, and my lack of efficiency snowballs and the house looks like a disaster.

The children (and me) are learning the five I wills for orderliness:

I will...
pick up after myself.
keep my work and play areas clean and neat.
put things back where they belong.
use things only for their intended purposes.
return lost things to their rightful owners.

Chipmunks are creatures who thrive on order (their burrow is a carefully organized network of rooms and tunnels), so in teaching the kids to be orderly, we have Chipmunk Time. ( I know, I know, it's a funny name!) We start at the back door and go from room to room picking up and putting away anything that does not belong in that room. Then we straighten up that room. Some days we have to do it more than others, but it is remarkable how quickly the house can look tidy when we all do the work together.

Seriously! I am lovin' this book!

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