Now that we've been homeschooling for a couple of months (we started late due to our cross-country move), I am able to answer all those questions of yours and give you a look into our typical school day.
We do a four-day school week, and the days we do school vary week to week. Typically it's Tuesday through Friday, because... Mondays, but a lot of the time it's Monday through Thursday, because.... Friyay or whatever. I aim for four days, but three really solid, productive school days is okay too. This ensures that we move through the curricula at a healthy pace, and gives us lots of white space to play more or do more of what fits each day.
Here's a typical school day for us. I'm including everything in our schedule, even the things that don't have to do with school, in order to show you how we parents find time to do everything before and after home educating time.
- 5:30AM Alarm goes off for Brian and I. We throw on our workout clothes and mutter curse words as we head downstairs. We drink a bunch of water and wake ourselves up.
- 6:00 Workout together (click here to hook up with my coach. She rocks.)
- 7:00 I check my email and respond to blog messages, Brian gets ready for work
- 7:30 Kids are allowed to come downstairs, they have a quick and easy breakfast
- 7:45 Drive Brian to work
- 8:10 I make myself breakfast and coffee, get Bella set up with copy work, then read my devotionals for the day (this one and this one are my all-time favorites)
- 8:45 Morning devotional with the kids (we use this one)
- 9:00 I rinse off, get dressed, and get the kids dressed
- 10:00 Emmett goes down for a nap. Time to really dive into school
- 11:30 Lunch time. Emmett is awake
- 12:15 More school. We almost always get everything done by 1:30 or 2:00. The boys can play Super Nintendo, look at books, make art, play with toys, or be involved with school during this time.
- 2:00 Boys take naps. Bella has quiet time, usually drawing or painting. This is my time to work. I edit posts and photos, create graphics, brainstorm post content, tweak my web design or whatever is on the to do list for that day.
- 4:00 Snack time
- 4:30 Usually time to pick up Brian from work
- 5:30 Cook, eat, and clean up after dinner
- 7:00 Most nights, Brian starts the bedtime routine and I go to Panera down the street to get a tea and write until 9. A couple nights a week I stay home and help him, and we have in-home date nights.
Here's a list of the schooling I aim to cover each day...
- History/Bible story: we talk more in depth about one of the characters in our devotional or a specific time in the Bible. We look things up online and watch YouTube videos to help.
- Math: one lesson per school day. We use this.
- Learning to read: Bella was not interested in learning to read until this year, and following the Charlotte Mason method, I let her lead what I teach with her interests, so we are learning this year with this book that I love. We do at least one lesson per school day. The lessons are simple and short, and Bella is ahead of the child this book is aimed towards, so some days we do more like five or six lessons.
- Language: we use this.
- Read aloud: We are following the Year One book list from Ambleside Online, and currently reading Little House in the Big Woods. The kids are loving this book even more than they loved Charlotte's Web, so we'll definitely be going through the entire series.
- Reading Comprehension: this just means the kids drawing a picture of whatever we read in that day's chapter(s) to show me they were listening and understood.
- Recitation: As a part of her Language curriculum, Bella memorizes and recites different poems.
- American Sign Language: we are beginning very basic with this book. All three older kids are learning.
- Composer, artist, star, or nature study: Composer study is Tuesday, Artist study is Wednesday, nature study is Thursday. These days are interchangeable depending on our plans for the week. Obviously, if we have plans to get outside with our friends who lead us in exploring our new area on a Tuesday, we will switch the days.
- Outside play/explore (at least three days a week): we try to do a lot of school outside. We'll just hit up a picnic area at a nearby park or bring a blanket to a grassy area in the forest and do what other kids do in tiny desks. Charlotte Mason believed in the outdoors, and so do I.
One other thing I will note is that I really try to have the house picked up, workout clothes laid out, and things ready for the next morning. It makes things
so much easier
on me, and gives me a good start to my day. It also helps Brian get out the door on time. I find when the morning is prepared for, the day is pretty seamless. I shoot to go to bed by 10:00. I admit this doesn't always happen, as I am a night owl training to be an early bird, so I have more sleepy days than I'd like.
I hope this is helpful and not as dull as it felt when I was writing it! If you have a question I'll always answer, so feel free to shoot me an email or a comment below. Happy homeschooling!