Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Homeshool Schedule

I had some questions from my previous post regarding allowing your child to determine the hours to homeschool. You can read that post here. There are some oft-repeated questions when it comes to homeschooling hours. How many, how often and when? Flexibility is one of the key underlying principles behind homeschooling. This flexibility applies not only to the curriculum but also to the number of hours.

  It is only natural that parents, especially if they have just started out on homeschooling may feel that their children should be at their books all the time when regular school-goers are at school. This is not only false but can also be damaging and counter-productive.


One of the most ignored issues of the public school system is the sheer waste of time and energy that it causes. Many periods are simply wasted away and the child effectively derives only 1-3 hours of study everyday. Then, there are days when the studies become too intensive (and not retained) and other days when it's only games and no work at all. There is a lot of time children spend in school, but not actually learning.

Early on in your homeschooling practice, work out a schedule. It is advisable to stick to the same schedule everyday. A routine makes it easier to learn and gives structure to the learning experience. It also tells the students that parents are sincere about their learning. A routine also allows your child to free his mind from other activities and concentrate on studies. He knows that a particular time is strictly set aside for learning. However, if he has completed his studies for the day and shows a grasp of the concepts, don't just fill up the rest of the time with busy work. Reward his hard work by letting him pursue his own interests. Remember to be flexible and adjust this schedule as needed.

The actual number of hours that you need depends on the curriculum you have chosen and the learning style that suits your child. If you are dealing with a subject that seems to be more complex, you may need to sit with the child for a longer period. Using various techniques, it may be necessary to demonstrate what you are trying to teach. For instance, a lesson in Algebra may take more time than a lesson in English.

Homeschooling does not refer to the practice of sitting in front of the books and learning the printed matter. Field trips, watching documentaries, visiting factories and libraries also make up an important slice of the homeschooling process. It makes sense to intersperse these activities so that learning becomes fun. Outside activities and field trips can also help make the concepts in the book come alive. Such as a trip to the grocery store or cooking to a recipe to show how math fits into everyday life.

Given the fact that too many public school hours are wasted in meaningless activities ranging from talking to busy work, do not allow public school hours dictate the time you should spend teaching your child at home. Remember that at home, he is getting high-quality one-to-one time that is highly productive. About 1-3 hours of study is enough in the primary level. It is not necessarily true that the more  hours you put in, means more learning takes place. It really is the quality of time spent and this is the reason why home-schooled children are often much smarter and more balanced than regular school going children.

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38 comments:

  1. Schedule is the key but I also like the flexibility of homeschooling.

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    1. I agree a schedule is important. But always remember to be flexible and make sure the schedule fits you and your child. And if it doesn't, don't be afraid to change it up.

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  2. I used to homeschool my older two children and loved that we could set our own hours for it. We also took any opportunity we could to turn it into a homeschool lesson. We lived near Disney with a plethora of learning activities between Animal Kingdom and Epcot. We turned cooking into science and math and read daily. The kids learned that learning was a lifelong, continual process - and not just something that happened during certain hours on a clock.

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    1. Love this, thank you! That was one of our main goals when we decided to homeschool. To teach them to love learning!

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  3. This is a really helpful post...and interesting! My daughters' elementary school recently received an F for a school grade from the state. One of their answers to this problem is to simply add an hour to the school day. I'm not certain that's the best solution? :(

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    1. I agree, simply adding an hour to the day is not likely to improve the situation.

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  4. Home schooling seems like a good way for kids to learn, without having to deal with bullies or other things that come with normal schooling. Thanks for the read.

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    1. It is, I am also able to teach my kids my values without worrying that they'll be contradicted in school.

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  5. Excellent information! Several of my friends have made the switch to home schooling this year, so I will sharing this post with them!

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    1. Thank you, if they have questions, tell them to feel free to contact me and I will help if I can.

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  6. It makes total sense that you'd be able to condense the school day down because all the fluff of being in a public school is out of the way. I also like that you can hone in on the child's interests more and/or delve deeper into them.

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    1. This is a big point for me because I fell into that trap initially. My oldest and I had a rough first year until I learned to relax and just concentrate on what we needed to do and not worry about the time.

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  7. I REALLY love reading homeschool posts. Although my oldest is in school - I try and live "teaching" and learning in the home and on our adventures. The VALUE piece is key - it's challenging to see some things that are picked up in school settings. So great to hear about all that you are doing. :)

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  8. I wish I had the ability to home school but my kids age in range from 1st grade to senior in high School, and from delayed to severely handicapped. I work in a severely handicapped classroom because I enjoy the kids and interaction and if it ever became an issue of my kids safety I would def look into home schooling:)

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    1. The fact that you are involved in their education shows them that you are invested. Just do what you can, everyone's situation is different. God Bless!

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  9. I go crazy with a schedule lol! We need to be able to be flexible and learn on the go and at home. My kids love the freedom!

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    1. I got crazy with the schedule in the beginning. I had to learn to be flexible and not stress over the small stuff.

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  10. What a very informative post about homeschooling!!! I liked the fact that a homeschool kid is safe from bullies and can concentrate more in his/her studies.

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    1. That was a factor in our decision to homeschool. We have also moved several times and I like that I don't have to worry about pulling them out of school and changing schools every time we move.

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  11. cudos to you!
    When my second was small I toyed with the idea of homeschooling my little ones but struggled to find the resources to get started.
    Now I am a mom to 4 and can not imagine keeping them all home.
    LOL!

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    1. I understand Home Schooling is not for everyone. In my opinion, lol, the most important thing is that as parents we are involved in our children's lives as much as possible. I was lucky when I first started to live in an area with a strong homeschool group, so I got plenty of support to get started.

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  12. As a former public, private, and homeschooling mother I have to say homeschooling is not easy. I did it for one year, and it was just too much mentally to handle. My daughter was also not happy, and yearned to be in a school setting. This year, we decided to pay for a private school with a mere 17 kids. I am hoping it works out.

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    1. That sounds like a good private school. I hope your daughter likes it.

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  13. Many of my family members have decided to homeschool their children. I don't think I could do it! lol

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    1. :) You might be surprised at what you could do if you needed to. No, homeschooling is not for everyone. You have to do what works best for your family.

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  14. I wish I had the patience to do homeschooling with my kids, but I'm sure I'd get to wound up!

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    1. Thank you for your comment and I can understand that. If you do decide you want to try homeschooling, my best advice is to just take one day at a time.

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  15. Thanks for sharing. I know so many people who consider homeschooling but just have no idea how to begin and what the schedule might look like.

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    1. There are an abundance of resources available for homeschoolers today. You can check out my blog roll for a few of the ones I follow. I am also working on a post to highlight some sites I think would be especially helpful for newbies.

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  16. I was always curious as to how homeschool actually worked, thank you for sharing this! I know a couple of kids that I grew up with that are home schooled and they always seemed to be smart than everyone else ;)

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    1. I am glad you found this helpful. Thank you!

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  17. Children thrive on schedules. As a former public school teacher (who didn't have the meaningless hours in her instructional day that you mention) and as a former homeschool tutor, I know how schedules are so helpful for students. We are preparing our children for their future, a future that includes many, many schedules. I absolutely agree in flexibility and spontaneous learning but a penciled in schedule should be followed as often as possible.

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    1. Thank you for you comment. I am not trying to degrade public school teachers. I know for the most part you all have your students best interest at heart. I am not really even talking about the time the are in your classroom. The 6-7 hours spent at school includes breakfast, lunch, breaks, field trips and a lot of other activities. I am just saying as homeschool parents we should not try to push 6 -7 hours of "school work" every day either. I have seen some try it and then feel like they failed because it didn't work.

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  18. Our school days always varied depending on what we were learning at the time. So grateful for my mom for deciding to homeschool us when we were younger.

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    1. Thank you for commenting! I always love to hear from former homeschoolers!

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  19. I've always thought about homeschooling! I really just might do it.

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    1. Awesome!! First thing you want to do is get yourself hooked up with a local homeschool group. Good luck and remember be flexible.

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