Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Problem with "Work Before Play"

It seems frivolous to play when there's work to be done. Do the work first. Then rest. Or goof off. If we play before we work, we could play forever and not ever buckle down.

Problem #1. Workaholics can work forever and not ever stop buckling down. But that's not the point of this post.

Problem #2. Homeschooling can be confounding when you intend to "work before play." The "work" is the housekeeping and the gardening and the errands that must be done to maintain a household. The "play" is snuggling in bed on a cold morning and reading a book with your daughter. The "play" is going on learning-tangents to assuage your curiosity about a few dozen items that come up during the day's section of history-reading. The "play" is going on a nature walk with binoculars and scouting out birds so that real-life experience fleshes out what you're reading from your science book. The "play" is building a transmission or a sewing machine out of your Fischertechniks.

But if the "play" is the schoolwork that should be occupying a hefty portion of your day as homeschoolers, then "play" needs to come before work. At least, sometimes it does.

Such frivolity. Such goofing off. This workaholic is going to have to try harder to quit working so hard. Or do one doozy of a job of redefining "work."


  1. Wow. You have a VERY different definition of "play" than I did as a kid (and even still do to some extent. ;-)

  2. I'm with Nathan on this one. lol

  3. I think Nathan's lying, Meghan. He was just saying the other day how much fun he's having playing Duplos with Alia. And if he's going to try to convince me he doesn't like web-surfing and reading a variety of tangential stuff, I ain't gonna buy it. And Meghan, I've seen the things you write about the highs of watching Audrey learn and discover and go on walks and visit the zoo.

    You people.... ;-)

  4. You're right. I guess my definition of "play" has changed since I had a kid!