Daily Schedule Update

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As children grow, so do the routines and schedules we have with them. Homeschooling looks very different for everybody, but one of the most frequent questions I hear from moms is, “What is your daily schedule like?”

Boy and girl visit the dentist

A visit to the dentist interrupts the daily schedule.

 

We have school days Monday-Friday. We take the weekend off. I sneak in letter writing on an odd Sunday afternoon (they both have pen pals), or a home Spelling Bee or some other “school activity” which is fun for them, but I don’t tell them it’s school and I don’t record it as such.

They get a 10-minute break between subjects – they can play or practice their tae kwon do forms and moves or do something else that is physical (no computer). It’s like crop rotation. We have used the brain, now it is time to tax the body a bit.

So here it is, our daily schedule as of 2017:

8:00-8:30 Wake up, make bed, dress up, start a load of laundry if necessary

8:30-9:00 Breakfast (we listen to their orchestra pieces while eating)

9:00-9:30 Devotional (includes Bible memorization)

9:30-10:00 Language Arts

10:00-10:30 Math

10:30-11:00 Piano Practice

11:00-11:30 Violin Practice

11:30-12:00 History/Science (alternate days) Continue reading »

12:30-1:00 French/Romanian (alternate days)

1:00-2:00 Lunch Prep, lunch and cleanup

2:00-3:00 Quiet Time (reading or listening to Adventures in Odyssey or playing alone in own room)

3:00-6:00 Free Time (they get 30 minute of videos if they finish their work, for instance)

6:00 Supper and family time (or make-up time, if something did not get finished)

7:00 Bath and reading

8:00 Bed time

Some late afternoons or evenings we have tae kwon do practice, piano lessons, or ochestra. One morning we actually have Skype violin lessons, so all this schedule gets shifted by 90 minutes.

We do many subjects together, but language arts and math require a separation, as skill subjects. So we alternate: when one needs me for math, the other one is doing a subject where he does not require my presence, like piano practice (I can always hear what they are practicing).

If they have a review lesson in math, for instance, they do not need me. They work on their exercises and then when I check their work we discuss mistakes, if any. It is all very fluid and things can interrupt the daily routine, obviously.

Phone calls, world events, family events, a headache, a bad night’s sleep – all throw off the schedule. It is just good to know what the goal is. We always come back to the routine above. All I can say is, I love how independent they have become. They still need me in the same room with them, or within earshot, but oh how much easier it has become now that they are seven and nine.


Our New Daily Schedule

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As children grow, schedules change. This is our new daily schedule, revised for one child in first grade and the other in third grade, after careful deliberations with an experienced homeschooling mom and my husband.

We work simultaneously on most subjects, but in skill subjects one would have to wait a couple of minutes until I explain a new concept to the other child. Ours is a multi-level classroom – they have been around for centuries and they have worked beautifully.

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Hanging on our fridge, our new daily schedule – even I need to refer to it several times a day

8:00-8:30 Breakfast in pajamas (Romanian and/or French lesson or video)
8:30-9:00 Getting dressed, personal hygiene, making beds
9:00-9:30 Family devotions and mommy reading aloud a chapter from a book
9:30-10:15 Math
10:15-11:00 Language Arts  Continue reading »

11:00-11:30 Practice piano (mommy fixes lunch and listens)
11:30-12:00 Lunch for kids (mommy reads history/science or educational video)
12:00-1:00 Quiet time (mommy eats lunch and enjoys the silence)
1:00-1:30 Practice violin
1:30 FREE TIME (coding, playing outside/inside, reading for pleasure alone or with mommy if needed)

On days with piano lesson, no piano practice. On days with violin lesson, no violin practice.

During their lunch, we alternate history and science twice and three times each week.

Lessons outside the home happen later in the day and NOT daily, so they get time to play outside even on such days.

Instead of a 10-minute break at the end of subject slots, I ask them to perform specific physical requirements, like 20 jumping jacks/push-ups/etc; rehearsing their Tae Kwon Do form; 10 minutes on the treadmill if the weather is bad; 3 laps around the house; punching bag fun; motion songs (e.g. I’m A Little Teapot, The Itsy Bitsy Spider) etc.

I think of this time as crop rotation. We have exercised the brain, now we will exercise the body. Plus, it keeps them on task. If they get a “free time” even of 10 minutes, it is very easy to lose control of the morning because I get busy doing something and then they see I am not done, they keep playing and by the time I finish and come check on them, they are so engrossed in their play, they resent being brought back to the school room.

I always have lots of books available for them to read in the afternoon. We schedule a play date now and then with their friends. We hike when the weather permits. We take nature walks.

On Fridays they clean the bathrooms (one each) and vacuum each his/her own room.

Daily, they empty dehumidifiers/trash cans as needed, wipe table, vacuum dining area.

Twice weekly they do their own laundry. I still iron, but they wash, dry, and put their clothes in the appropriate drawer. I help a bit with hanging some things that must be on hangers and because it helps their morale to see me in their room while they put things away. I iron what needs ironing – very few clothes, because I time it so that I pull things out of the dryer soon after the cycle has finished. I can actually get away with ironing once a month for about 30 minutes. I don’t care if their play clothes are a bit wrinkled because they have not folded them just so. They are kids.

Through it all, my goal is to laugh a lot with them. Children like to laugh at silly things and they are teaching me to laugh at them, too.

Just like any other schedule, this one is, of course, subject to change with notice.