Unexpected Learning

A couple months ago, my husband and I started to put our baby on more of a schedule. We planned out times for her feedings and her naps with hopes that the structure would help her sleep better in the evenings.

We wrote the schedule on a whiteboard. The permanent schedule is in blue and we add the adjusted times in red. For example, if the baby is up at 6:30 am instead of 7:00 we record the modified time on the schedule.

The other day I was preparing the baby’s breakfast in the kitchen when my daughter asked me what time the baby woke up. I responded that she was up at 7:00. We proceeded with our routine and shortly after laying my baby down for her morning nap, I discovered this:

Children always surprise me. They are often capable of so much more than we expect of them. When we don’t try to force “teaching” and we incorporate learning opportunities through everyday experiences, it is amazing as to how much they learn and grow!
Moreover, learning comes naturally for young children. They are learning from the moment they take their first breath in this world. They learn by exploring and interacting with their environment. Hands-on, “real”, experiences often have more impact than worksheets or memorization.   
So now my daughter is in charge of the schedule. She enjoys writing on the whiteboard and I enjoy watching her delight in this simple, yet effective learning opportunity. 
I truly did not expect something as mundane as a whiteboard schedule to turn into something so magical.

Thank you to Sofia from Sofia’s Ideas for inviting me to participate in this blog posting link-up.

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Jennifer Bly
Published author, creator of The Deliberate Mom, and regular contributor to The Huffington Post. Jennifer writes about parenting, homeschooling, her faith, and life with her husband and two girls. Jennifer has a Bachelor of Applied Human Service Administration Degree with a specialization in Early Learning in Child Care.
Jennifer Bly
Why I'll Break My Daughter's Heart Over and Over Again #parenting http://t.co/JAZBPEaEOk http://t.co/gFyNWuoLoK - 2 hours ago
Jennifer Bly


  1. says

    There is definitely something magical about a whiteboard! When one of my kiddos is struggling with a concept, the whiteboard is often the tool that does the trick. I think it has something to do with the gross motor work of the arms reaching a different part of the brain and finding a new path to the same destination. But, what do I know? Only that it’s cool!

  2. says

    I love when you said ” They learn by exploring and interacting with their environment. Hands-on, “real”, experiences often have more impact than worksheets or memorization. ” because of course, this is the foundation of so much of what we are trying to do with our home education. It has always been difficult for me to continue with this approach once they begin to read and write, as I tend to lean towards the rigidity of textbooks & workbooks & schedules & all that, but I certainly WANT to.

    PS Sorry it took me so long to get here. After I posted last week, I became severely ill. I mean, severely.

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