I spent time this week thinking about improvements I want to make in my homeschooling days. I thought about fixing bad habits, Charlotte Mason style.
thenWhen I was a new mom, I craved a daily routine but didn't know how to make one. My sister suggested that I simply write down everything I did one day and then use that list as my routine. I followed her advice, and within one day I had the direction I wanted in my days.
I've revamped my routine several times since then, of course. I don't have babies anymore who need naps, afterall (these days, sometimes it's me who needs an afternoon nap), but I still like a routine to our days.
Lately, though, my days feel bungled and sloppy, and it's my morning habits that are doing me in. How I spend the first hour or so of my day influences the way the rest of my day goes, I know that about myself. Sometimes when I wake up and start my day, I forget the things I meant to do. I don't like that forgetful feeling.
The morning is the place for my habit training. I figured out what needs work - my mornings - and now I need to figure out how.
I read a quote today from Marco Polo today about mornings, and it was just what I needed to read. Marco tells the story about travelers in the desert who hear voices calling to them, often leading them off their path and sometimes to their death. To remedy confusion in the morning, Marco says,
Before they go to sleep, they set up a sign pointing in the direction in which they have to travel.
yesThe story from Marco Polo told me exactly what I need in the morning: a sign pointing me in the direction I'm to travel. I like it. And, it's all the more fun to set up a sign for myself and think of travelers on the Silk Road doing the same for themselves, years and years ago. I like connections like that.
I've done this morning habit training before so I know the approach I'll take, and I'll write about it in another post later.
Photo: A church door on Amsterdam Avenue, detail.
Note about Marco Polo: I'm reading The Adventures of Marco Polo by Russell Freedman with my 9yo son. The writing is good and the illustrations are wonderful. The chapters are short enough to read in one sitting, though the chapters could be broken up into two sessions if you wanted to keep to even shorter lessons. The author moves the story along at a comfortable clip, making it a good book for practicing oral narration. I like this book.