Friday, February 7, 2014

What does a homeschool day look like?

One of the questions that I am most frequently asked is, how do I manage to homeschool and care for an infant? It can be done! First, I am going to discuss how to create a schedule and fit it all in. If you are considering homeschooling, but you don't know how to schedule your day, I can help you. Please keep in mind that a schedule does not fit all homeschooling families. The greatest thing about homeschooling is you have flexibility to plan your day. If you have an appointment, you can school in the afternoon or school on the go. There is also no need to have a Monday-Friday or a 8:00-2:00 schedule. We actually do school Wednesday-Sunday to coordinate with my husband's off days, but we have put in all of our required hours by then. Using a virtual academy is also flexible. Although you are given a lesson plan, you can decide how and when you complete each subject. The bottom line is, as long as the school work is being done (and passed) it doesn't matter when or how you do it. Also, remember that you don't have to get all the other tasks done in one day. Prioritize your day. If the bathroom doesn't get cleaned today, do it tomorrow! You can do a thorough house cleaning on your day off.

Next, get rid of daily distractions. Let everyone know that you are homeschooling during the day and put your phone on vibrate during this time. Do not answer phone calls or play "Candy Crush" during school times. Remember, when the teacher is distracted, the kids will be distracted. Treat homeschooling as a full time job (because it really is). If you wouldn't do it on the job, don't do it during school hours, and the kids will follow suit. Homeschooling is a very important job! You have made the decision to take their education into your hands (for whatever reason you may have) and their future is depending on you. Do not take this lightly, but still enjoy the journey!

Lastly, do not listen to the negative opinions of others and do not argue! I have had my share of rude comments, but I have made up in my mind that this is worth it, period. So far, judging from standardized tests, grades, and the amazing kids that we have, I am not doing too bad of a job :-) This is a personal decision for your family, that is it...end of story. You can laugh later, when you are receiving all of those college acceptance letters and being rewarded all of those scholarships!

Below, you will find a sample of our daily schedule. Does it always work out this way? Not always, but we try to stick as close to the plan as possible.

Kelly Leadership Academy Daily Schedule
6:30-7:00 am
Nurse, Change Infant
7:00-8:00 am
Clean Bedroom, Shower, Get Dressed
8:00-8:30 am
Wake Kids/ Kids Get Dressed
8:30-8:45 am
Kids Do Chores
8:45-9:00 am
Prepare Breakfast
9:00-9:30 am
Breakfast, Read to Infant
9:30-9:45 am
Clean up Kitchen, Put a load of laundry in washer
9:45-10:00 am
Creative Play for all 3 kids (Educational toys, games, coloring, etc.)
10:00-10:30 am
Math for 2nd Grader / for Preschooler / AM snack
10:30-10:45 am
Vocabulary for 2nd Grader/ Phonics for Preschooler
10:45-11:00 am
Spelling for 2nd Grader / Calendar Math and Numbers for Preschooler
11:00-11:15 am
Handwriting for 2nd Grader and Preschooler
11:15-11:45 am
Language Arts/Literature for 2nd Grader and Preschooler
During Independent Work…Bottle for Infant, Put Laundry in Dryer/2nd load in washer, Clean Bathroom
Science or History for 2nd Grader / Science or Social Studies for Preschooler
Change/Cuddle/Naptime for infant
12:00-12:30 pm
Art or Music for 2nd Grader / Preschooler
12:30-12:45 pm
Bible Lesson for 2nd Grader / Preschooler
12:45-1:00 pm
Break / Mom checks emails, Facebook, text messages, pays bills
1:00-1:15 pm
Prepare Lunch / Get Infant Up / Changed
1:15-1:30 pm
Put lunch on plates/ Serve
1:30-2:00 pm
Lunch, Educational TV, Mom cleans upstairs if needed
2:00-2:15 pm
Clean up Kitchen, Wash Hands, Restroom, Put 2nd load of clothes in dryer
2:15-2:45 pm
Outside Time (if weather permits) or Inside Games
2:45-3:00 pm
Electives (Computer Skills or Foreign Language) for 2nd Grader and Preschooler
3:00-3:30 pm
2nd Grader finishes up all work and projects or Silent Reading / Preschooler Independent workbook lesson
3:30 pm
End School / Kid’s Free Time Begins
3:30- 4:00 pm
Mom works on blog or other projects / Snack Time for Kids
4:00-5:00 pm
Change, Sing, Play, Read to Infant
5:00-6:00 pm
Mom prepares for tomorrow’s school day, grade papers, file, etc.
6:00-7:00 pm
Prepare dinner, Dad arrives home
7:00-7:30  pm
Dinner Time, Discuss our Day
7:30-7:45 pm
Clean Kitchen / Kids Finish Chores
7:45-8:15 pm
Kids TV Time
8:15-8:30 pm
Infant gets a bath / Dressed for Bed
8:30-9:00 pm
Other kids take a bath/ get dressed for bed
9:00-9:15 pm
Prayers / Story from Dad
9:15-9:30 pm
Give Infant Last Bottle/ Put him to bed
9:30-9:45 pm
Catch up on Household Chores / Prepare clothes for tomorrow
9:45-11:00 pm
Mom and Dad Time
11:00-11:30 pm
Bath and Bedtime