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Rhythm, Ritual, and Rest in the Homeschool Day

I wrote this post, Rhythm, Ritual, and Rest in the Homeschool Day, for Sonlight Curriculum

While every homeschool is different, I believe there is one constant that helps us get through our homeschool days, and that is rhythm, ritual and rest.

While every homeschool is different, I believe there is one constant that helps us get through our homeschool days, and that is rhythm, ritual and rest.

Rhythm in the Homeschool Day


Rhythm is a meaningful element of our homeschool day that represents movement. We start our day with the end in mind, but homeschooling is not a race to the finish line. Slow, intentional, rhythmic movement is ideal to create a steady flow in our homeschool day.

Movement in homeschool is turning pages, reading aloud, going on a nature walk, baking cookies with your children, or working through your day one subject or task at a time.

Rhythm in the homeschool is just like knitting one stitch at a time until our project is complete. Just like each stitch we make moves us forward, each day we complete moves us forward.

Rhythm in the homeschool is just like knitting one stitch at a time until our project is complete. Just like each stitch we make moves us forward, each subject or task we complete moves us forward.

As you move through your curriculum, you make slow, steady progress while also making connections with your children through the books you read, the subjects you study, and the value they bring to your life. History / Bible / Literature F brought much value to our lives this year because it gave us perspective during hard times and helped us remember that things could be worse. When are tempted to complain, we remember the purpose of Minli's journey in Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. We not only move ahead in our homeschooling, we move ahead in life.

Movement involves being present in your homeschool and doing the next important thing — whatever that is. With Sonlight, it's opening my IG and doing the next day on the schedule. It keeps us progressing steadily through our curriculum. Lately, I am in the habit of asking, "What's next?" If I focus on the next important thing, it keeps me from feeling overwhelmed. First things first.

Because we experience life moment by moment, rhythm is moving through these moments one at a time.

Adding rhythmic movement to our day flows into ritual.

Ritual in the Homeschool Day


Ritual in the homeschool is how we deal with our day. It’s the strategy we use as each day begins and ends.

Rituals remind us that we can do hard things. They give us special ways of remembering why we’re doing what we’re doing and how we’re going to get through it.

In our homeschool, these rituals are stacking up our homeschool day with a literature-rich homeschool curriculum. It's having tea and toast while reading poetry around the breakfast table on Monday mornings. It's lighting a candle, diffusing essential oils, or playing classical music to create a peaceful learning environment.

These rituals ground us. They remind us who we are and what is important to us. They reinforce our ability to do the next thing. When we ground ourselves, we are not vulnerable to being thrown off-balance, so we naturally feel more balanced, peaceful, and present.

Reading aloud as a family with Sonlight is a ritual that grounds us in our homeschool.
Paddle to the Pacific — the last leg in our Eastern Hemisphere journey!

Reading aloud as a family with Sonlight is a ritual that grounds us in our homeschool. We are present and connected with our children when we read to them. In fact, reading aloud is one of the best uses of my time while homeschooling my kids. With our IG as our guide, the books we read make us think and provide opportunities for meaningful conversation.

But rhythm and ritual will only get us so far if we are not well rested.

Rest in the Homeschool Day


You have a list of things to do today. School. Appointments. Groceries to buy. Dinner to fix. Problems to solve. Things to do.

Rest is more vital to our ability to homeschool successfully than any other facet. But in a society that is all about do-do-do and go-go-go, rest may seem counterproductive.

But rest is what makes it possible to get through to the end of each long day. A homeschool mom who doesn’t find rest for her mind, body, and spirit while homeschooling today is draining the energy she’ll need to homeschool tomorrow.

Rest allows us to refresh ourselves for the journey we’re on.

Rest is more than getting a good nights sleep (though that is crucial).

It's more than ceasing from physical or mental effort (though that's important, too).

Reading aloud as a family with Sonlight is a ritual that grounds us in our homeschool. We are present and connected with our children when we read to them. In fact, reading aloud is one of the best uses of my time while homeschooling my kids.

Rest is different for everybody. It's a refreshing walk in the park or an intense workout at the gym. It's a quiet hour reading a book by yourself or an enjoyable hour attending a book club with friends. It's taking an online photography class or attending an art show downtown. It's connecting with your spouse after the kids are in bed or taking the whole family on a much-needed vacation.

Whatever it is, rest leaves us relaxed and energized for whatever comes next. It gives our bodies the renewed energy to carry on.

Rest is about restoration.

It’s about reconnecting with the people and the things that bring us joy.

Rest is so important to our success as homeschoolers.

Would you like to move closer to a life of rhythm, ritual and rest in your homeschool? Why don’t you ask God what that might look like for you?