Friends, we start homeschooling in less than a week. Eeek! Hours of working on the new school room, days spent on YouTube researching curriculum, and lots of time reviewing our school books. I think I’m as ready as can be to begin this new journey! How am I planning a homeschool schedule to keep us all on track? Well friends, today I spill the beans.
First off let me say: I want homeschool to be relaxed and FUN! I don’t want anything too structured. One of the things I like most about homeschooling is there’s no-one looking over my shoulder. No-one making sure we’ve done our schoolwork to whatever standard they think we should. That’s not my jam. If I’m homeschooling, I’m doing it my own way. For this reason, our homeschool schedule will be flexible. It may change as the year goes on based on the kids specific needs.
Now, I also realize that there are certain things that need to be done each day. That not every day is going to be amazing, and that we need to follow some kind of schedule to keep us on track. Once all the kids school books arrived, I spent a day in my office looking them all over and coming up with our typical homeschool day.
Homeschool Schedule: have a specific area
First off, before the kids ever open a book, I think it’s important to designate a certain area your “school room” and set up shop there. Having an area set aside for school doesn’t mean work can only be done in this spot. What it does mean is you have a home-base of sorts. Where the kids know the homeschool items belong. This prevents waisting valuable time searching for school related items during school hours.
While I know not everyone can have a “room” designated to school, you can pick an area of your home. Find a bookshelf near the kitchen table and use that as your homeschool spot. Or, do like we did and make a homeschool cart. This can be rolled whenever you need, while keeping everything in one, tidy spot.
How to schedule your day: Check the laws
We are in Washington State, but most states require similar hours and days of schooling. We are required to do 180 days of school a year, and 1,000 hours total. As far as what specific days and how long per day, that’s all up to you. Just make sure that you end up with a total of the days and hours required. You can find more about homeschool laws and requirements here. For this reason we’ve decided to do year around homeschooling, which I’ll go into deeper in another blog post. For now, simply knowing these things will help you plan out your year.
The 4 day SCHOOL WEEK
We have decided to do school four days a week. Why? Because why not! Friday will be our activity, field trip, or catch-up day depending on if we don’t finish other projects throughout the week. Who doesn’t love the idea of a three day weekend?
Now, I’m still counting Friday as a school day and part of those 180 days. Why? Because if we do a “field trip”, it counts. If we bake cookies and they kids help measure out the ingredients, that’s math and home ec, and it counts. If we go on a nature walk and call out the names of the kinds of trees, that’s nature and science, and that’s also school. School is so much more than bookwork. How cool is that? I geek out on how much we can consider school. Anyhow, I digress . . .
Because I know how I work best, I get up quite a bit before the kids do. Thankfully they sleep until about 7 each day. Getting up early, working out, doing some work around the house, and having my morning quiet time with the bible and drinking coffee in peace is important to my overall attitude for the day.
I realize this is a pretty big morning and a very early start. Don’t feel pressured to do it the same. You know how best you work, so take that into account when making a personalized morning schedule.
Our typical Monday – Thursday schedule will go as follows:
- 4:30 – I’m up!
- 4:40 – Head downstairs for quite time, reading and bible study
- 5:15 – Office work
- 6:30 – Workout
- 7:00 – Shower, dressed, ready for day
- 8:00 – House chores, breakfast for kids
- 9:00 – Phone off, school starts
When the kids get up, they head downstairs for 30 minutes of morning cartoons. Lately they’ve been loving The Magic School-bus on Netflix, and Gummi Bears on Disney+. They also have a cup of 100% grape juice. I do this to keep their gut healthy. You can read about that here if you’d like.
After cartoon time they head upstairs to get dressed, make beds, and clean their rooms. Then they have free time until 9am when we begin school.
School Time schedule
Obviously I’m not quite sure of timelines, and will not be super rigid. These are just an estimation for how long I think each subject will take.
- 9:00 – Bible study with kids
- 9:10 – Chapter book read aloud time for 15-30 minutes (I read to the kids)
- 9:30 – Tyrion math / Evelyn writing (Tyrion will need my assistance while Evelyn can do writing independently. She will finish before Tyrion and then play quietly while we finish.)
- 9:45 – Tyrion writing (independently) / Evelyn language arts with my assistance
- 10:00 – Tyrion language arts / Evelyn educational free time (she will have some educational games she can play or look at books)
- 10:20 – Break time – snacks
- 10:45 – History or science family style. We will alternate these daily.
- 11:45 – Lunch
Afternoons are pretty much free time! Tyrion does have to do Piano for 15 minutes daily, and also read independently for 10 minutes daily. He gets to decide when to complete these, as long as they’re done by 5pm.
The kids will also have a chore chart that I will encourage them to start on early each day, but again, as long as it’s done by 5pm it’s fine.
Our curriculum this year
What to know more about the curriculum we’re using this year and why? Make sure to check out this blog post.
Have more questions about schedules? Make sure to leave a comment and I’ll get back to you, or follow me over on Instagram, my favorite platform to communicate. I’m also in stories daily sharing our life!