Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Planning the Homeschool Day

Homeschooling is efficient.

There is no waiting in line, no time wasted going from class to class, no sitting through attendance roll call....the list can go on and on.

It's the reason that homeschooling takes a fraction of the time to complete as traditional school.

People are often surprised that homeschooling Kindergarten takes us only a couple hours a day since public school counterparts are in classrooms for 6 hours a day!

We have recently completed our 12th week of homeschooling (that's 1/3 of the school year already!).  We continue to spend about 2-3 hours a day doing "official" homeschooling material...usually it's closer to 2 hours. 

I schedule my week using the Seton Day Planner.  Recommended to me by a friend, it is my favorite planning resource for homeschooling by far!  We use Sonlight curriculum and it is well planned out, but for me, I like to have everything scheduled on one page that I can write on, erase and check off.  Actually, the checking off is my favorite part ;)

After breakfast we all clean up the kitchen area and clear off the table to get ready for the school day.  The older girls can load their breakfast dishes into the dishwasher and then play with the baby while I complete the cleaning.  We are usually good to go by 8:15ish in the morning.

We start with our religion lesson.  We read a few pages of the Children's Bible every day and this is something the whole family participates in.  Emmy sits on my lap and Sofia and Maya sit close so they can see the pictures!  We are also reading Leading the Little ones to Mary and going through the Seton Kindergarten Catechism.   This takes about 10 minutes.

Sofia then starts on some independent work such as her handwriting pages from My Printing Book, and her phonics lessons from Explode the Code 4 and Modern Curriculum Press Phonics Book B.  Depending on the day and Sofia's level of cooperation, this can take 15-30 minutes to complete.

By this time, the baby is ready for her nap and we get a chance to do some one on one learning.  We usually start with her math program which is currently RightStart A.  Time is about 20 minutes including games.

Then we move to All About Spelling (AAS) Level 1 which takes about 15 minutes.  We do this in a different part of the house then the rest of the schoolwork.  This breaks up the time we are sitting in the same area and keeps the girls from getting bored.

History is the part of the day that can either take 15 minutes or an hour depending on how interested they are in the subject!  Today we learned about Pioneers and we spent a lot of time on it.  My girls are in love with Little House on the Prairie books so they wanted to know EVERYTHING about them! 

Read-aloud books are books that all the kids enjoy!  Even Emmy likes reading from our poetry book and Mother Goose book!  Actually, the poetry book included in the Sonlight package The Llama who had no Pajamas is one of my all time favorite poetry books!  It would make an excellent Christmas gift for kids!  The longer chapter books, I read to Sofia before naptime in the afternoon.  Read-aloud time takes about 15 minutes.

The rest of the day is spent going on field trips, doing crafts, playing outside, building forts, playing with siblings and just being kids!

Kindergarten doesn't have to be 6 hours a day away from home!  Our day is really relaxed and we get so much done in just one morning.  Look at the smiles on those girls...how could I separate them for 6 hours a day?!


  1. The thought of having my 5 year old in school 6 hours a day was my main reason for deciding to homeschool. I'm not sure what my excuse will be as he gets older, but I'm sure I will think of something :).

    And it sure is efficient at home. We can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to 'do school.' The rest of the day is just living life.

  2. So glad to see you blogging again! :-) Thanks for the look into your day! You surely get a lot accomplished! I hope you are having a blessed Advent. We are taking a break from the "formal" work and doing a lot of special Advent activities. I posted about them on my blog for Week 1, if you'd like to take a look.

    God bless,

  3. Nice post thanks for sharing..blessings for you...loves soraya

  4. This was super helpful for me to see what a typical day is like. I have been trying to plan ahead for next year and I kept thinking, "How will I fill up 6 hours every day?"