The teaching/reviewing of grooming habits is one of the things I really need to work on. I find that I place so much emphasis on homeschooling that I kind of just brush over some of the more basic daily things. But, masha Allah, I can see that I am getting better at going back and reviewing/teaching better grooming habits.
I came across this article at E How: http://www.ehow.com/how_4530558_use-montessori-methods-teach-good.html and thought it was really handy. To my surprise, I found that I actually do several of the tips that were given (walking child through the process, giving extra related bits of information).
One thing that I particularly liked about the article is that it touched upon something that I have trouble with. It talked about teaching kids that a particular grooming habit is a unit of tasks rather than just one task (the example given that blowing nose was not just blowing the nose but also handwashing afterward and throwing away the tissue). So we must teach and reinforce those things in addition to the actual blowing of the nose. I have this trouble with sweeping. My kids think that sweeping does not include: throwing the pile away, picking up things before they sweep……
Here are a few things that I have used/are using/plan to use f or improving our grooming habits/routines:
1. Establish a morning routine which lists step by step the morning duties, including chores and grooming. Since actually writing the routine down and posting it, I have found that this is our most consistent part of the day, masha Allah.
2. I have put up individual morning routine charts in the kids room, but what I am finding out now is that I need a master chart. So, this week, I printed out a copy of my daily routine chart, scaled it to poster printing to make it nice and big. My chart lists the tasks down the first column and then in subsequent columns I have all the kids names (7 for now). I laminated it and each morning (I just started this week), I check off as people do things. Its quite a task, but as I see it is working, my mind seems to be focusing on this more. I do not let the kids eat until they have completed all the tasks (so they have to have all tasks up to eating breakfast checked off to eat breakfast). The chart is for the whole day, but for now, its mostly used as a checklist for our morning routine.
3. Since I noticed that I need to go back and review, reteach, or teach basic grooming habits, I have decided to let my morning routine, be my curriculum guide. Starting with the first thing on there, the morning duaa, I hope to go through the morning routine and spend a good amount of time on each item in the routine, showing and teaching like the methods in the article, insha Allah. Some things we may spend a week or so on, making sure I show/watch them each day (well that is the plan).
4. I liked the tip of providing extra information for a task. Sometimes when the kids say the morning duaa, we go over why we are saying it and try to tie in that we should be thankful to Allah for allowing us to wake up and hopefully live another day to do good deeds and improve our worship. For my little guy, we might talk about concepts of night and day after saying the duaa.
5. Allow myself ample time in the morning to get our grooming done in the morning, so make our morning start time a reasonable time. I decided to try to get things done by our allotted start time, but try to make sure that everything necessary is done before we start, even if its later. Also, I am working on trying to get us up earlier as well. I like to use the morning time to get myself together, but I have to sacrifice this, if need be, to make sure that we are getting our stuff done. I have to realize/remind myself that I am training future adults, future Muslims, and not simply trying to do school at home.
So anyway, if you are struggling like me to balance homeschooling and teaching grooming/adab, hope you found my thoughts helpful.
If you have some tips that help you teach grooming/adab, please leave a comment………………………