Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Stardate 60060.5
An email exchange with Carl brought up some concerns that my kids are possibly over scheduled. I don't think so at this point, but it's a concern. Here is the text of my reply:
How would you get that impression? :)
I get concerned about it. They do not get to do more than two activities at any one time, but then that gets multiplied by three. The ones that don't have something to do that day go home with one parent, usually April since I am already out here. The particular blog entry you are probably thinking of reflects April being out of town, and then they didn't get that luxury. They handled it better than I did.

Tomorrow they go home with April; nothing is scheduled. I, however, go down to Bountiful to take my dad out to eat. Friday they are going home after practice, I have SOM. One reason they only get to do two activities is so they don't get over scheduled, and the other is that I don't. They also have to want to do it, I don't like dragged crying kids to something. Next, schoolwork needs to be kept up with. Rachel's lowest GPA in the last two years is 3.95. Patrick and Thomas don't get GPAs yet, but Patrick has to be the best at everything, and gets upset with a score lower that 95%. Thomas struggled the most, due in some part to older siblings BLURTING OUT ANSWERS when we tried to study (stopped when I would put them to immediate chores when they did so), but he now parades 100% on spelling and math in his brother's face. I look at what happens when they don't have an activity. It's a problem if they can't find anything to do. It's a problem if they don't ask me to play; that means they've given up on me. Dinner together with no TV is important, and they need engage in conversation (last night's subject was who shot Abraham Lincoln, John and some name with a W, best guess was John Williams. Nope, he writes music, including the Star Wars theme, the correct answer is John Wilkes Booth).

I try to make sure they have free time. Sundays are usually spent at home and with nothing scheduled to do. Homework for the weekend needs to be taken care of as much as possible on Friday to help with this goal.

End of Entry


Danielle said...

It's interesting to get a tidbit of others lives...

Kevin and I have tried to make the same challenges here at home. Our kids when they are with their mom get to spend a lot of time in front of the TV or a computer.. when they are here, we're shoving them out the back door.. here read a book instead.. at times it's a battle, but when the end of the night comes and they are tired because they spent the day outside, in fresh air.. I'm much more happy with that.

We have a membership to the gym, which permits swimming.. I'm looking forward to getting more swimming in with all of them.

I think that you guys do a great job, and like I said to that same post.. I remember those days myself, when it was a race to be the clock to get from one thing to the next and not miss anything.

You guys are doing a great job! The kids are also beginning to chose what they want and do not want to do. That is a good thing, that means your teaching them to make their own choices on activities. :)

Good job! :)

TMadden said...

Thank you. We battle with the boys over video games and TV. TV is a security blanket for Thomas. If he gets upset, he marches over to the TV and flips it on. If Patrick had a choice, he'd play video games all day and night.

April and May are the busiest months. And next fall Thomas starts First Communion education, which is another thing to add.