Have you had too many weeks in a row in which you couldn’t get everything done? I don’t mean you didn’t finish all the school work; I mean, you are way behind in the stuff one would think would be easy. Like when it’s time to pay the bills, but you realize you haven’t filed away the bills from the last two months, even though it’s been on your list every day. Or when you suddenly realize that your teenager’s pants are all high water (again), and then your 10-year-old let you know that she really can’t wear these shoes because they are (three sizes) too small. Or maybe every one of you needs to go to the dentist, two kids need check-ups to fill out medical forms for team sports, and a third needs to see the eye doctor because his head hurts when he reads. Homeschooling doesn’t automatically make all of these things easier to schedule. That’s why we need Break Week.
If you are so far behind on laundry that you could wash and dry for eight hours and still not finish, it’s time for break week. Break week is NOT a vacation. Break week is when you get to be ONLY a parent and the Chief Operating Officer of your home, and your children get to assist. The only subject to teach this week is Home Ec. In our house, break week also comes with treats, fun, and extra free time. I’m not a slave driver (despite what my kids may claim). When my young men help me maintain our home more than usual, they are rewarded with good meals (including dessert), free time or a special family activity, or (their favorite) cold, hard cash. We don’t work all day during break week, but we do work on our planned task list of home chores every day that week. The goal is to be caught up before the next week arrives.
Break Week is for mundane, necessary projects like flower bed preparation, spring/fall cleaning, holiday preparation, seasonal closet clean-outs, decluttering, re-organizing, garden planting or clean-up, and maintenance appointments. It’s also for family fun and rest. Don’t forget to schedule a Break Week into your homeschool calendar several times a year.