Our first year of homeschooling was not easy. I’m not going to lie. One thing that I would do to cope was to scroll endlessly through Pinterest to find an easy homeschool schedule that would make everything ok.
My need for control and order made me crave a rigid timetable. As you can probably guess, it did not work out. Trying to force my family into someone else’s reality was doomed from the start.
After some deschooling and lots of patience, we managed to find a routine that suits us all. So I want to share with you how you can find that elusive easy homeschool schedule that’s just right for you.
What’s Really Important?
First of all, you need to think about what’s really important. Once you have a list of activities that must happen on a daily basis, you’ll have a better idea of how much time you need.
Something I realized is that so many things are not actually that important. I cut my list down substantially and it means that we don’t do that much, but we do it consistently.
I don’t need a spotless house or the kids to study for 8 hours a day. But what I do need is time for self care and exercise. It benefits everyone in the family when I’m happy and healthy.
An Easy Homeschool Schedule is Unique
In my eyes, homeschooling is about creating a learning experience for my children that works for them, but also for me. And a lot of this is about letting go of expectations and comparison.
When you stop comparing yourself to others, you open yourself up to something much better. You are free to be creative with how, what and where your kids learn. And this is where that sweet spot lies.
The flexibility of homeschool allows you to really tailor your perfect homeschool schedule. My kids are best in the morning, so they like to do everything before 9. Then for the rest of the day they play, explore, read and create.
Wednesdays are our hobby days. I’m off from work, so after their school ‘work’, we spend the day baking, doing science experiments, going for nature walks or just hanging out. Then on Fridays the kids can do what they want.
Goals, Not Schedules
Instead of forcing the kids to ‘put in their hours’, they rather have goals that they have to achieve during the day. This usually means Math and English as the main goals, with whatever else we’re working on at the time added in.
I know that kids need structure, but at the same time a fixed schedule can be counterproductive. If you’re married to your schedule, then the inflexibility can cause kids to disengage and become reluctant.
By rather giving them goals to achieve, then you’re allowing them to take ownership of their learning. They can decide how they are going to reach these goals. Their path might be different to yours, but if they’re getting there, it really doesn’t matter.
I believe that in the future, having learnt this responsibility will be very valuable and it will make them highly employable. We are moving away from jobs that require you to be in an office for 8 hours a day. Jobs are becoming more creative and flexible, so our kids should be too.