Recently I have embarked on a new homeschooling journey.
After hearing numerous times about the Waldorf method of teaching and learning, I decided to try it out for myself.
Our homeschool has always been an eclectic mix of what our children need at the time.
I was drawn to the Waldorf method because it integrates so much of nature, puts a high emphasis on free play and outside play, and the celebration of holidays throughout the year.
I am going to show you what this has looked like in our homeschool in five lessons.
This lesson is all about holding the space.
What is Holding the Space?
Holding the space has to do with energy and presence.
When parents hold the space, they are completely available to their children with mental, spiritual, and physical energy.
Before you stop reading and think this concept seems to out there for you, hang in there.
Holding the space has had amazing results in our home and for our children.
How Do You Hold the Space in Your Homeschool?
First of all, you put away your “work,” your phone, and any electronics.
These are the energy sucking objects when you are trying to hold the space in your homeschool.
Think back to when your kids are acting out.
For me, I am usually on my phone, trying to do something on the computer, or checking on something on my phone.
My kids immediately know when I am not giving them my full attention.
Now, this does not mean that I am always playing with them all the time. There are times when I am reading with one of my kids, and someone has to wait until I am finished. Same goes for chores or activities I am doing with my husband.
Holding the space does not mean that your kids get all of your attention all of the time. It means that you are available and providing energy and leadership to the moment.
Some Changes I Made to Hold the Space
First, I have started to keep my phone back in my bedroom. It is much less tempting to look at when it is out of sight, out of mind.
Also, I am working on work-related tasks before the kids awake or during our rest time.
My kids know that I am giving 100% attention to our homeschool and to our time together.
There are some days when I feel like I am much less productive, and my to-do list is not getting checked off as rapidly as before.
But the reward far outweighs it all. I find that my kids have fewer tantrums, fewer attitude issues, and are overall happier when I am consistently holding the space.
Finally, I am more aware of my children’s needs. My attention is more focused, which in turn makes me more attuned.
Ideas to Help You Hold the Space
#1 Be mindful of what your children are doing
I know. I know. It is easy to get caught up in something that we want to get done, but you will find that holding the space will free up time for just you.
Before working on something that needs my focus, such as work or a big cleaning task, I make sure that the kids are engaged in an activity. This usually means that I spend about 5 or 10 minutes doing the activity or playing with them before I am off to work on what needs to be done.
Of course, there are plenty of times where the kids are helping me. This is being aware of what they are doing when I need to get something done on my own.
#2 Have activities handy for holding the space
Since I told you that electronics are off limits when holding the space, you will need some sort of handwork or project to work on.
I have recently started knitting, embroidery work, and reading a book a week. (Click here to see the books I will read in 2017).
By having a handwork project or book handy, I can hold the space while my children play.
#3 Hold the space even when friends are over to play
Before having children, I pictured my friend and I getting together for coffee at my house. We would sit and talk while the kids played sweetly together.
Well…that is not exactly how it works.
I have found that I still need to hold the space even when we have playdates. I need to make sure that my attention, energy, and focus are still present and available for my children.
This is a good reminder to keep adult conversations appropriate for kids’ ears. Talk in the same room as the children so you can still hold the space.
#4 Holding the Space Will Change As Your Kids Grow
Even in the short time that I have worked on holding the space, I have noticed that it changes often.
My husband has learned the benefits of holding the space, and together, we have learned as much as we can on the subject.
Having your spouse on board in holding the space is essential to the rhythm of your home.
Also, I have found that my oldest who is ten years old is learning how to hold the space by watching Dustin and me.
We are modeling to our children how to hold the space when we become more effective at it ourselves.
I encourage you to be mindful of holding the space and find ways that you can stay present and engaged throughout the day.
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This post is part of the 5 Day Homeschool Bloggers Hopscotch.