I thought I would maybe take a second to explain a little how we do these discussions. I have a copy printed and on the fridge for easy access for those who don’t have a phone in our home. I send the link to the family chat at the beginning of the week as well so that everyone has a digital copy on their phone/ipod. We use this more than anything because of the easy access to links. Because we homeschool, we do our CFM discussion anytime between 9am to lunch depending on the day’s activities. After we do a discussion I take a look at what tomorrow’s will be so I can make sure I’m prepared for it and it will give me a better idea of what time we need to do the discussion the next day based on how long I think it will take. My one recommendation would be to find a time that works best for your family and allows you to not feel rushed. This might mean staying open to changing times or just changing times on certain days; I’ve found that as I let go of it having to be at an exact time every day and instead let it be more fluid we have had much deeper conversations. It’s amazing where the conversation leads when you can let it happen naturally and not be rushing through to try to move onto the next thing. With that being said, that’s hard! So go easy on yourself while you try to figure it out. New habits take time and adjusting but you’ll get there! We do CFM daily for the most part but there are some weeks where we do a couple lessons in one day knowing we won’t get to it on other days. If you want to double up days and just read a scripture or quote on your busy days, do it! Find what works for YOU, do it the best you can, and trust in the Lord that He’ll make up the rest.
A big reason why I started doing this was because I wanted to be very intentional with our study. There were so many times we would be reading a section in the CFM manual and I would think, “dang, I wish we were going to talk about this today. I could’ve looked up that one video that explains this concept and it probably would’ve helped.” So I decided to just always plan ahead and avoid those moments as much as possible. I also found we were all getting a little restless with the reading and just going through the motions. I now try to include songs to listen to and music videos to watch and discuss, I look up children’s videos to incorporate to keep it more entertaining for the younger kid, and most importantly I try to keep each day to something we can do quickly if needed. Sometimes we breeze through the assignment for the day and it takes 5 minutes, other times we get into deep discussions and it takes us 20 minutes. Be open to allowing it to take as much time as needed or going as quickly as needed to get something in before you lose all interest. 🙂
Week 9: February 27-March 5
Week 10: March 6-12
On weeks that there is a conference talk to listen to, you can do it as a family, listen in advance and just share your notes on it, or assign it to a child to read in advance and share their notes on it. As part of their homeschool schedule, our kids do personal study each day. There is a whole list of things we consider appropriate for their personal study that they can refer to…one of those items is listening to a conference talk so sometimes (like in the previous week) we ask them to listen to it individually and then we’ll come together to discuss. This can lead to them listen more intently when they know they will need to share something. It also gives them the opportunity to listen at their pace, pausing if they desire to take notes. Of course, we know this can set them up for a great opportunity to have the Spirit bear witness to them.
Week 11: March 13-19
Thursdays are not as busy of days for us and Fridays the kids don’t have school (well, not their core classes they do at home), so you’ll often see that those days have longer discussions. You may want to look over the schedule for the week and switch days if it works better for your family.
Week 12: March 20-26
Every single discussion is inspired by, or pulled directly from, the Come Follow Me manual put out by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I am a big believer in music being a huge way we are taught. I know that’s not the case for everyone, but it is for me, and as our kids are getting older I realize how many of them have the same tendency as I do to feel the Spirit strongest through music. I plan on incorporating more music in discussions moving forward. I also think journaling is a huge help in teaching our children so we gave them new Come Follow Me journals last year and ask them to bring them to each and every CFM we do; we don’t always use them, but they are there incase inspiration strikes and our kids want to document something or we do have something we want them to note during the discussion.
We have been blessed so much in the last year we have being doing CFM this way and I hope someone else finds it helpful as well, but if you don’t that’s ok…keep searching until you find what does work for you. Keep trying to new ways until you see it clicking with your family more and more. More than anything, I hope our kids will one day look back on this blog and remember all the wonderful memories we made, all the great discussions we had, and all the moments they felt moved by the Spirit and I hope they can incorporate some of these daily lessons into their family scripture study. May we all continue to live our lives more intentionally…especially with the things that will have the greatest impact on our children as they navigate this confusing world.