When starting to homeschool your children, creating a homeschool schedule that works for your family can be difficult.
Wondering how you will get everything done - schooling, housework, extra-curricular activities like physical education, and outside responsibilities can seem overwhelming, especially for new homeschoolers.
Creating a homeschool schedule for your family is very important. It will help you stay on task, remind you what to do and help you reach your family’s unique goals.
It is important to consider your family dynamics when creating your family's schedule. You must be realistic in your expectations – everything can not be done in one day. Your schedule must also help your family reach your family’s unique goals and purpose in life.
An effective homeschool schedule should:
At the end of the day, you want to be in a different place than you started. You want to be closer to your goals.
Your schedule will help give you direction, so at the end of the day, you can see progress. Looking back and seeing accomplishment is so satisfying – even it seems insignificant.
For me getting a couple loads of laundry washed, dried, folded and PUT AWAY is a significant accomplishment. To someone else, it may be a piece of cake.
Somehow I get everything laundered and folded into baskets, but there it stays. It takes great effort for me to get the laundry out of the laundry basket and into our drawers. I have come up with some creative solutions to minimize my weakness, but for me seeing empty laundry baskets is a huge victory!
It's so easy to loose focus. You start doing laundry, cleaning the house, reading your emails (big mistake!), and pretty soon an hour has passed, the kids are running around playing, with their projects or assignments undone.
Using a timer is great way to keep track of those minutes that slip away. Find a timer that rings or beeps loudly and constantly until someone turns it off. Getting up to turn off the timer, or to reset it, will keep you accountable to your schedule and keep you from getting side tracked.
Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles/ Freedigitalphotos.net
There is no typical home school day. What you do and when you do it is entirely up to you and your child. You may find a teachable moment at bedtime; you might find it at 2 a.m. :(
We're not advocating waking your child in the middle of the night, but the point is that even though there are teachable moments everywhere, you still need to have some sort of schedule to start with if you want to be an effective teacher for your child.
Try to stay flexible. Don't let the schedule control you. It's supposed to simply be a guideline to help you accomplish daily tasks and move you toward your bigger goals. Keep this in mind when creating a homeschool schedule.
You may have to try many different homeschooling schedules to find one that works best with your family. Your schedule may not look anything like mine, or those that homeschool around you - that's okay! Don't be tempted to compare. No two families are the same, so no two schedules are going to be exactly the same. You may even discover that the schedule that worked perfectly the previous year, doesn't work now. Your family is always growing and changing.
Be patient though, you will find one!
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