21 April 2014

Our Daily Schedule

One of the things I love about homeschooling is that we can make our own schedule! I'm always interested in how other people set up their homeschooling schedule, and many people have wondered how we get anything done at our crazy house (most days I wonder the same thing!) It is challenging for sure with our kids being so young (ages 6, 3, 2, and 7 months) but with some strategic planning and a lot of grace, we manage!

My goal is to have 4 good school days a week. So, I make plans for 4 days, which helps me not stress out when something comes up and we don't get any school done one day. We also can use those extra days to go on field trips to the zoo, children's museum, or have a play date with another family. I also like to continue a bit of school throughout the summer. Not very intense, and not every day, but a little bit here and there keeps us in the routine, and helps make up for only having 4 days weeks throughout the year!

Here is what a typical school day looks like:

6:15 I feed the baby, eat breakfast, have some quiet time

7:00 Kids wake up, eat breakfast, clean up

8:00 TV time for the kids, I do any last minute prepping for school, then have a daily cleaning chore (another post about that later!)

9:00 Kids have a snack while I feed the baby, then we get dressed & brush teeth

9:30 Baby goes down for a nap, 2 yr old goes into her crib with toys and books for "Crib Time." This gives me a little bit of uninterrupted school time with the older two. We start with Bible time together. With my 3 yr old, sometimes she wants to do school, sometimes not. We might work on her daily notebook (basically calendar time) and sight words at this time, or she goes and plays by herself. My kindergartner works on his daily notebook, spelling words, and journal writing.

10:15 Computer time for kindergartner - he does 30 minutes of Reading Eggs or Starfall, then 30 minutes of free play (he loves Nick Jr. and ABCya). I get the 2 yr old out of her crib and play with her and 3 yr old and do some laundry.

11:15 Lunch time

12:00 Big kids clean up any toys while I feed the baby and put the 2 year old down for a nap. We make it a race to see if they can have everything picked up before I'm done feeding the baby.

12:15 3 yr. old does a reading or math lesson on the computer (Reading Eggs) while I read aloud a chapter book to my kindergartner.

12:45 We do some kind of arts and crafts project to go along with something we are learning about.

1:00 3 yr. old lays down for a nap. Kindergartner does math and science.

1:45 Game time - I play a game with my kindergartner. Many days I really am just beat by this time, but I know he loves this one on one time, since most of the time my attention is on his little sisters!

2:00 Baby takes a nap, and kindergartner has reading/rest time for 30 min. On a good day the girls will all sleep until 3, so I have some time to do work on the computer.

And that's about it for our school day!

Now let's just be real honest here: the above schedule is the goal. The day is constantly interrupted by bickering, hitting, timeouts, spankings, whining, and a hundred other things that happen with kids. Most days the 2 yr old is screaming about 20 minutes into her "crib time" and I just have to let her stay there and scream for a few minutes, otherwise we can't get anything done. Many days the baby doesn't fall asleep right away, so I'm running back and forth between the kids doing school and shoving the pacifier back in the baby's mouth. The 2 yr old sometimes wakes up from her afternoon nap before I even finish school with the others, so I have absolutely no break. Then there's always a poopy diaper that happens at the worst time. There's a glass of milk spilled on the floor, there's someone playing in the toilet....etc. So please don't see us as having it all together. :-) And the other thing is that little kids are always changing. So, in 6 months, our schedule might look completely different as the baby's needs are changing and the 2 year old (hopefully) matures a little.

So, this is just a glimpse into our day, hopefully you've enjoyed reading about it and maybe got a few ideas! I've gotta run....someone's crying.....:-)