Your weekly rhythm is the pattern you set for the days of the week in your home. A weekly rhythm is very helpful for your planning, especially as you enter the kindergarten years. It can be a way to structure your week so you get all the housework done, make meal planning easy, bring in the artistic and practical work you want to do with your kindergartener, and make sure you are doing things that you love to do as a family.
Having a rhythm for your day helps you to be intentional about how you spend your time, and a weekly rhythm does the same thing. If you find that you struggle with daily rhythms, I suggest that you start right here with a simple weekly rhythm and see how that feels.
Children love to know what to expect from each day of the week. The names of the days of the week are too abstract for young children and don’t carry any meaning for them. But having a Painting Day or Baking Day is very meaningful to the young child, and they love it!
What are weekly rhythms?
the activities we do each week
a pattern to the days so the young child feels a sense of repetition and predictability
a way to mark the specialness of each day
Your weekly rhythm can be organized around any set of activity or characteristic of different days of the week. I’ve listed a whole lot of possibilities below to get your gears turning.
A typical weekly rhythm in a Waldorf kindergarten might look like this:
- Beeswax modeling
- Crafts and festival preparations
At home you might like to do any number of practical, artistic, or movement activities with your kindergarten child. Some ideas include painting, modeling, crafts or handwork, drawing, gardening, projects, cleaning, baking, cooking, hiking, festival preparation, visits to the park or library, games, swimming, hiking, special adventures, community activities, or homeschool gatherings. Anything which you love to do as a family can be an important part of your weekly rhythm.
So a home rhythm for kindergarten could look like this example:
- Painting Day
- Crafts Day
- Gardening Day
- Modeling Day
- Cleaning Day
- Hiking Day
- Drawing Day
It doesn’t matter what you choose to do so much as picking things you enjoy doing together!
There are also a number of ways to organize the work of the home with a weekly rhythm. This can simplify your life quite a bit, and gives your kindergarten child many opportunities to join in with purposeful work in the home. Here are some examples:
Meal planning (riff-on-a-theme style):
- Soup Day
- Chicken Day
- Pizza Day
- Restaurant Day
- Burritos Day
The Work of the Home:
- Laundry and Mending
- Bills and Paperwork
- Handwork (sewing, knitting, woodwork)
- CSA pickup and food prep work
Or your house cleaning might have a weekly rhythm:
You might have different activities in the community that frame your week:
- Park Day
- Co-op Day
- Grandma Day
- Shopping Day
- Playgroup and Library Day
- Family Day
- Worship Day
Or any combination of the above!
First Steps to Weekly Rhythm
1. Think about what you tend to do already on a weekly basis. Can you assign activities to certain days to bring them into rhythm? Is there anything you would like to add into your week? Is there anything you can take away which doesn’t match your priorities for yourself and your family?
2. Think about the needs of your kindergarten child (age 4-6). What kind of practical, artistic, movement, or community activities would meet their needs and can you assign those to a certain day of the week?
3. Think about the work you need to do each week in your home, your homeschool planning (in the grades especially), and your meal planning and errands. Can these activities be brought into a weekly rhythm?
4. Feel this out for awhile and get into a comfortable weekly rhythm yourself before you bring it into consciousness for your child. When you feel that your rhythm is running smoothly, you can start referring to each day of the week with its new special name (Baking Day etc.). Chances are your child already has intuited the rhythm of the week and they will enjoy having a name for it.