So, I have a blog I visit frequently called Tale of our Quest. Here's what she says about getting her kids to recognize time (i.e. work faster):
The way I have chosen to help them work faster (getting their morning list done on time or cleaning the kitchen before the timer beeps) is that they get an item or more for every minute that goes past the allotted time. Right now, morning lists and breakfast (Bud is in charge of making breakfast this week and Spice of making the smoothie) need to be done by 8 am. I know they are done when a child says, "Mom, do you need anything else?" and then, "Okay, I'm done, will you check my work?" At this time, I check their work and if it is done right, I look at the clock. If it is past 8am - they get to pick up as many items as the number of minutes past.
The first time I did this, I gave no warnings since they had already been taught to do it before 8. Around 8:20, Bud came and said, "I'm done with my morning list." I said, "No you're not, you forgot the last two items. He said, "Oh yeah, do you need anything else?" I asked him to get the baby dressed. Then he said, "Okay, I'm done, will you come check my work." I did and it passed so I looked at the clock and it said about 8:35 so he got 35 items to pick up. The other kids saw what happened so they hurried and finished and got to pick up the number of items they earned. The next day, everyone had their morning list done by 8.
In the kitchen - since they only have 10 minutes to have it cleaned (15 for whoever has dishes - I'll help if there are a lot of dishes) - they earn 5 items per minute that they go over. I'm enjoying not having to say, "Hurry guys, you only have 5 minutes left", etc. I just let the timer do the teaching and I stay quiet. This is much more effective. They are learning so fast!
The same rule applies to when I ring the bell for a meal. They come right away and wash their hands and set the table. If they don't, they earn 10 items or more depending on the circumstances.
p.s. I got a planner/calendar for Brooklynn this year . . . so far it hasn't helped. :-) BUT that doesn't mean it won't help Miriam. :-) This year I think I just need to be more consistant with the weekly interviews because I think that is KEY and something I haven't done too well this year. With both John and Brooklynn and Addie all in similar phases next year, I think it will be more effective. Addie will LOVE planning things out the way I do. John will LOVE having a list. I'm just not sure it will work for Brooklynn (the whole planner thing), because she doesn't compartamentalize the same way I do. She loves feeling "grown up" with her own calendar, though. If her siblings are doing it, she may be more inclined. ????
Funny story (this is a long p.s.) : The other night Brooklynn was doing a performance for Savior of the World. Well, apparently she wasn't backstage when everyone else in her scene was there and so they all started freaking out, "Where's Rebekah!?!" (stage name). My friend Mary ran to get her. She found Brooklynn coming up the stairs, no urgency whatsoever. Well, it turns out she knew exactly where she was going and when she needed to be there and she WAS there right when she was supposed to be. Everyone else was just early or panicked for no reason (nerves!). So, anyway, it dawned on me that this "dawdling attitude" I've been fighting against with her for so long isn't really a weakness after all. She just doesn't sense urgency and doesn't get easily stressed out about time. She gets where she needs to get when she needs to get there. It did make me realize that I CAN give her more of a time schedule than I've given "because we homeschool." Anyway . . . just more thoughts on time. :-)