Homeschooling Is in Session
What Homeschooling Looks Like
I’ve had a few ask…..
I started hybrid homeschool 4 years ago, an answer to an inner/higher voice that had been growing louder since my daughter was in Pre k. I have also been extremely blessed to work part time from home. So when I first embarked on homeschooling, I read blog after blog after blog. With the hopes of trying to define what homeschooling should look like.
Year 4 School At Home
By the middle of year four, the conclusion to that research was that it’s very different for everyone. Now, in practice it has changed from semester to semester.
So, you should consider this info as potential inspiration and not authority. Ask a different mom, get a different answer. Here’s an attempt to offer an honest day in our life. And what has worked and what has not worked for us.
I am a believer in sleep!! If my kids need it I let them have it. Usually my 7th grader is up by 9 and my 3rd grader up by 8. This is with an 8:00 to 9:00pm bed time.
While they’re still in bed, I may catch a workout, an hour of work, or enjoy self care quiet time (coffee, devotions, spiritual reads, light journaling, coffee, yoga research, coffee). I may throw a waffle on the table for the 3rd grader if my husband hasn’t made something for her already. 7th grader is on her own for breakfast. As an introvert, I’m not a fan of talking bf 8 and also not a big breakfast person. My kids know this.
After breakfast, teeth and hair brushing is required. Getting dressed is optional. I fought this for a couple years, and finally let it go. They eventually get dressed on their own at some point every day.
I imagine schools will be providing assignments and you’ll be overseeing the work/making sure it gets done…this is very similar to our hybrid homeschool. Brighton academy, provides much of our assignments. I fill in extra needs and desires. We choose to do math 100% at home because of curriculum preference.
My 7th Grade Daughter
My, 7th grade daughter, is 90% on her own. I’m there for questions and check in on her subjects, as well as grading any needed work. At the beginning of the year she needs me more to get into her groove. I read her science out loud to her, which was more meticulous than editing papers! Math is her challenge subject, but she has grown so much in that area since we started.
Summary here is that your middle schooler may need firm hand holding for a week or so, but they may be able to take the lead after that.
My 3rd Grade Daughter
My youngest daughter and I work together from about 9:30 to 11:30am. As 3rd grader, I have been decreasing this 1 on 1 time and increasing her independent time. Because she is ADD, we limit about 20 to 30 minutes per subject. And we bounce around quite a bit. She also needs to move while learning. So she might be jumping and reciting math facts.
Also, we work on the floor (not in chairs at the table) sometime in half lotus. I have to limit formal breaks with her or I lose her. 5 minutes will turn to 45, but other kids will need a 10 min break every hour. I have found for her boucing between subjects is the best break. So, we might do math facts, then a grammar worksheet, then I read a science or social studies lesson, then she reads literature, then we watch the math lesson, then we quiz spelling. It doesnt work for her to do math from 9am to 945. LA from 10 to 11. Science 11 to 11:30. Your kid maybe different!!!!!!
While my 7th grader, stays on 1 subject at a time, the order she does them each day may change. My little 3rd grader, will work independently. But with a checklist I create during our together time until lunch.
Lunch is from 12 to 1. We eat together usually. At this time, I check in with what is left to do for the day, prioritize and adjust. Watch CNN student news, Ted Ed and or listen to a podcast, work on a family devotion or self development curriculum. Depending on how we are feeling This time could extend towards 2. I used to do family history during this time as well. This yea, my oldest is taking middle school history and this year my youngest is studying the states.
Finishing The Day
After 2pm , I am done!!! ?. Seriously, have learned I need a break. At this point in the day, they know what they need to get done and have been set up to do so independently.
I help my 7th grader with her after class assignments from 11 to 12 or 1 to 2. The start time is never set. But I restrict it to not more than 45 min.
I usually take personal quiet time for 30 min to an hour, workout, shower or begin working at 2.
In the morning, I write them each a list. The list is more detailed for my youngest and includes subjects, outside time or therapy exercises, piano, daily devotion and gratitude, reading, and a chore. Often the list will get modified, but mostly I feel they adequately accomplish it. Chores may get pushed to the weekend, a subject may carryover to being emphasized the following day. The list is my sanity! (Highly recommended)!!!
Device Time Protocols
They are not allowed electronic time until list is (mostly) complete and it’s limited to 1 hr on school days.
When Structure Falls Apart
NOW, some days I am desperate to get caught up on work, they are uncooperative, I’m in a personal mood, and the ADD is holding us hostage. These days might result in an afternoon nap, extra outside time, and extra self time. I am always resistant to the flow of these days, but find within reason that it’s ok to let them just happen. And they usually yield a brighter, more productive tomorrow.
I am sure there are days like this in the classroom! A disruptive group,
a grumpy teacher, a tough concept….I remember them.
Communication Within The Family Will Improve
You’re gonna get to know your kids, family and yourself more over the next few months. Homeschool doesn’t have to look like school. (Best advice I got was it shouldn’t). Give them and yourself time to adjust. Let them do art, encourage outside. Be ok if they’re done with subjects in 2 hours 1 day and 5 hours the next. Be ok if NONE of this novel ever applies to you. Another mom will write it differently. And you will too.
Depending on my work load, my husband may be in charge of dinner.
Or I am not ashamed of takeout (let’s support our local Restaurants). We do get to the the table for family meal several evenings.
Snapshot of average at home day.
7 me up coffee, self care, write checklist
8:30 me workout, girls bfast, teeth hair
9:30 to 11:30 academic time. Me work one on one with my 3rd Grader. 11:30 to 12 get lunch ready, This is independent time for my 3rd Grader.
12 to 1 or 2 lunch, table time
Afternoon independent work, music practice, outside, chore, work, self care time
4 get dinner ready
5 extra curriculars (postponed for now)
7 get ready for bed and next day
At the beginning of every semester, I make a detailed schedule to satisfy the type A in me. I also do this to ensure state hours our being fulfilled. And I imagine KS will figure something out through the schools, but either way it’s nothing to stress about. I hold to the schedule EXTREMELY loosely and look for natural routines to emerge. A schedule is handy until you identify those routines and needs, but be very open to letting it change to suit you and your kids.
If anyone is going roque on curriculum, I’m happy to also share curriculum choices.
I withheld that here (well this is already too long) because it will likely be best to wait and follow district offerings….unless you begin to feel inspired to make this a more permanent schooling situation?
Have younger ones? Also read How To Teach Your Kids Colors