The beauty of home education is the freedom to set your schedule. Our days, weeks, and school year are very different from the local public schools, and even different from our fellow homeschool friends. The simple reason is that we are a HOME and not a SCHOOL. With that in mind, I’m sharing our 2020 homeschool schedule. Last year it was different, and next year it probably will be, too.
Over the past 20 years that we’ve homeschooled, we’ve had lots of schedules! When my kids were all young, the day was very structured, with lessons, playtime, snack time, and nap times religiously observed. Now two have graduated, and my youngest is 9, so the days are different — and a lot easier!
We begin at 8:00 a.m. when my nephew arrives. He’s the same age as my oldest son, so he comes for lessons twice a week and they do the same curriculum together. Around 11:00, two other girls (daughters of a single-mom friend of mine) come for our history portion. We finish up the day around 2:00 p.m.
- Math with older kids
- Math and Reading with youngest child
- Language Arts (Grammar, Latin, copywork, writing)
- Literature (this year it’s Tolkien’s books)
- History (including geography, literature, copywork, science, art, and culture)
Lunch and breaks happen whenever we feel the need. Usually the kids eat their lunches while I’m reading aloud from a history selection or while we watch a video.
It’s just our family on Tuesdays, so I assign homework to my nephew to do on his own at home. My kids do something like this:
- Math lesson
- Science co-op homework
- Enrichment Classes co-op homework
- Reading and math for the youngest child
Repeat of Monday.
We attend a weekly science co-op. My kids, my newphew, and the two girls I teach all attend.
The three boys take Apologia General Science from 8:30 – 10:30, while my daughter works on math, copywork, and reading. Then she and the other two girls attend an elementary science class from 1030-12:00 while the boys do their math, reading, and science homework. I’m the assistant in both classes so this is not a drop-off class for me. I can help the teacher and supervise my other kids during their homework.
For the past 20 years we have attended Enrichment Classes near us. In fact, I helped start this group! All of my kids have always attended. The classes are always varied, and run the spectrum from fun extracruriculars to heavy core curriculum classes. I always teach classes because I love to teach!
Our current semester looks like this:
- Take Kwon Do
- Plastic Canvas Crafts
- Paddle to the Sea
- Advanced Paint by Number
- Popsicle Stick Building
- Study Hall
- Team Challenge
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Paint by Number
- Popsicle Stick Building
14yo son (and newphew):
- Free Draw
- Study Hall
- Lord of the Rings Film Music
- Lovin’ Literature
We school year-round, so a break can happen anytime we wish. If sickness happens, or the weather is perfect, or Dad gets some time off work, we can just call a halt to our lessons and not worry about “getting behind.”
When it’s hot in the summer and the kids don’t want to go outside (we live in Texas!), we have school. When it’s beautiful in Spring or Fall, we tend to take days off and enjoy the outdoors.
We don’t tend to worry about “grade level.” I’m more focused on advancing knowledge. If we finish a math book in March, we move on to the next one. If our grammar book takes 13 months to finish, that’s okay. I’d rather teach to proficiency than to just push them through one book and start another in September. Basically, the calendar does not dictate our school.
The only time we think about grade level is for co-ops that we do. And even there, we use flexibility in joining classes. If my 9yo is not quite ready for 4th-6th grade classes, I might keep her in the younger group a little longer. On the other hand, if my 13yo is bored in 7-8th grade classes, he can move up to the high school classes. Our group is flexible, and so am I.
That’s it! Roughly 3 days a week are actual “school” days, and the other two are for outside classes.
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