This is post #2. The Grid.
The Grid is my name for a plotted out on paper schedule. I call it The Grid because it works better for my family. Calling it our schedule brings on a lot of condemnation for us as we have many interruptions that cause us to have to divert. We call it “falling off The Grid” or “we have to get back on The Grid.” The Grid keeps us focused and alert to the tasks at hand and move ever onward. It is The Grid because it is the backbone of our school. It is the structure that supports our endeavors.
So, using a grid is one key way I organize my large family homeschool. The Grid is simply a spreadsheet with 30 minute time blocks. I use this to plot out a realistic “order of events” for every member of our family from me down to the baby. This helps me see at a glance at any given time what someone is supposed to be doing. It helps prevent two children or more! needing to use the computer or the piano at the same time. It provides direction when one or more of our heads gets in the clouds and we don’t remember what we are supposed to be doing! This idea is based loosely on Managers of Their Homes by The Maxwells. They have some helpful resources you can utilize if you work through their book. You can also read about this type of scheduling at Large Families On Purpose. These are helpful resources- but for me, the best thing is just to take the blank sheets and begin filling in what we already do. Little by little. Working with each student one by one. I will say that working ten people on such a path is complex.
I am moderately relaxed with our grid. I have to be. However, my children are very diligent and focused about moving through their tasks every day in the same way. I highly encourage this. They build their own personal routines and everyone except for the little girls (not in school yet) helps build their own path on The Grid sheets. They own it. In this way, I come alongside them, helping them to manage their time and their duties. We flow much in our house.
Without this, the day quickly gets stressful and I quickly have several children at once trying to practice piano, typing, spelling, or some other subject that is one person only.
-In His Grace,