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How to Create a Reliable Homeschool Schedule (Samples Included!)

Struggling to get into a good homeschool routine? Read through this article on how to create a reliable homeschool schedule for your family.

Has this ever happened to you? You start your homeschool day with the best of intentions…

You’re going to make sure you start catching up on that subject you guys are behind on, you’re not going to let the kids get sucked into too much screen time, you’ll do a science experiment, and also find time to get outside and maybe hit the park.

But before you know it, the day has disappeared, it’s already time to start dinner, and you haven’t tackled half the stuff you intended to. Homeschooling is great, but sometimes being the one responsible for keeping everyone and everything on task can be tough.

Having a solid homeschool schedule and routine, however, can do wonders for helping you stay on track and accomplish everything that needs to be done.

In this article, I’m going to give you all the ins and outs of creating a homeschool schedule that is reliable and will work for your family.

Let’s dive in!

Why It’s Important to Have a Homeschool Schedule

First things first, let’s go over why having a homeschool schedule is important. For some families, letting things just flow and go where the day takes them works.

But for the majority of us, having some sort of structure and consistency is really important. I’ve found this to be extra true for children.

Having a normal routine or schedule allows them to know what to expect each day and gives them a sense of security. It also helps their brains to settle down and focus when it’s time to learn.

By following a consistent routine, children also learn to prioritize tasks, manage their time effectively, and take responsibility for their own learning. These skills can serve them well throughout their academic and professional careers.

As the parent, it also makes it a lot easier to make sure you’re making time for things like outdoor play, socialization, extra-curricular activities, etc. This becomes even more crucial the more kids you’re homeschooling.

Overall, it just helps you manage your homeschool day better. You spend more time getting the stuff you need done actually done and less time feeling like you’re running around in circles.

Types of Homeschool Schedules

Before planning out your homeschool schedule, it can be helpful to explore the different types of schedules that people use. Then you can decide which one might be the best fit for your family. Here are some common types of homeschool schedules:

  • Traditional Schedule: This schedule follows a traditional school-day model, typically with set times for each subject and break times throughout the day.
  • Block Schedule: This schedule focuses on a few subjects per day for longer periods of time, allowing for more in-depth learning and less transition time between subjects.
  • Loop Schedule: This schedule rotates through a list of subjects, with each subject getting equal time and attention. This allows for flexibility and can be helpful for families with multiple children.
  • Unschooling Schedule: This schedule is more self-directed, allowing the child to choose what they want to learn and when. This approach allows for a lot of flexibility and creativity.
  • Hybrid Schedule: This schedule combines elements of traditional and non-traditional approaches, allowing for a mix of structured and self-directed learning.

Steps for Building Your Own Homeschool Schedule

Now let’s talk about how to go about creating your own homeschool schedule. Below I’ve got 5 steps to creating a unique, but reliable homeschool schedule that will suit your family.

But, I want to give you a few tips before you get started:

  • Don’t try to recreate school at home: Homeschooling looks different than traditional schooling. Don’t try to recreate what they would do in a school setting at home.
  • Use other schedules as examples, not requirements: Each homeschooling family is unique and what works for one family might not work for you. Focus on creating a routine that works for YOU and your family.
  • Communicate the schedule to your whole family: It becomes exhausting having to constantly nag your kids about what needs to be done. Tell them the schedule, post it where everyone can see it, and give them some of the responsibility of sticking to it. These are important life skills that will benefit them as they get older.
  • Pay attention to what works for your family and adjust as needed: After putting your schedule into place for a few weeks, you might notice that a few things aren’t working. Feel free to adjust and switch things around. Don’t be afraid to customize your routine as you go along.

Now that we’ve gone over the tips, let’s dive into the 5 steps for creating your homeschool schedule:

Step 1: Determine Your Priorities

The first thing you want to do when creating a homeschool schedule is to get clear about what your homeschooling priorities are. At the end of the day, what are the most important things you want to accomplish in your homeschool?

What’s your homeschool philosophy? Are you more focused on making sure you cover certain subjects each day or do you prefer more child-led learning?

Do you need to homeschool around your work schedule? Do you want to make sure you and the kids get out of the house regularly?

Does your child need to pass certain exams by the end of the year? Do you have certain requirements you need to meet for state reporting?

There is no wrong or right answer to these questions. But having a clear idea of the end goal in mind will help you make sure you set up a schedule that will help you achieve your homeschool goals.

Step 2: Pick your subjects

Once you understand your goals, the next step in creating your homeschool schedule is planning your homeschool curriculum. What subjects will you be teaching this school year? How long will it take you to cover each subject?

Do you want to use a certain curriculum or do you need to create your own? Do some subjects require more time than others?

Take some time to map out the subjects that you’ll be teaching and how long they will take. This will help you later when you start filling in the specifics of your schedule.

Also, don’t forget to consider extracurricular activities and social outings.

Step 3: Plan your time blocks

Once you’re clear on your goals and what you’ll be teaching, it’s time to start planning your time blocks. To do this, you want to look at how long you’ll need to do schoolwork each week to get your curriculum done in time.

Then, sit down with a pen and paper or your homeschool planner and plan out chunks of time for each subject. Decide what time of day you’ll start school and when you hope to finish.

Keep in mind how many hours a day you want to homeschool, how long each subject takes to do, and how many you will do per day. Also, make sure you plan around extracurricular activities and breaks for some free time.

This is the area where sometimes people get a little overwhelmed. They feel like they have to fit in “all the things.” But remember, a good schedule is something that’s going to be in line with your family’s goals and needs.

Feel free to adjust and shift things around as needed. You don’t have to stick to traditional school hours or even a Monday through Friday school week if that doesn’t work for you.

You might prefer doing schoolwork in the morning and having afternoons free or vice versa. Our family only homeschools 4 days a week because that’s what works for us.

Focus on what fits with the way you want to homeschool your family. Once you’ve got it all planned out, you’ll put it together in a weekly schedule.

Step 4: Keep it flexible

The next step in planning your homeschool schedule is remembering to keep it flexible. Nothing ever goes exactly as planned and that’s ok! Just like any other family schedule, your homeschool schedule may need to be adjusted if things don’t go as expected.

If something comes up and you can’t stick to the schedule for the day, just reschedule it for later in the week or even for the following week if needed.

In our homeschool, we treat our schedule as more of a routine. Unless we have somewhere to be that day, I don’t worry about the kids getting their stuff done at a certain time of day.

They know what needs to be done each day and they work on managing their own time and getting it done themselves.

If however, having a more structured schedule is helpful for you, you can put some contingency plans in place. Identify things that might possibly derail your homeschool day and have a plan for how you’ll deal with it.

For example, if we get an impromptu invitation to a field trip or park day with friends, we use Sunday as our makeup day.

A rigid homeschool schedule is hard to stick to, but if you keep it flexible, you’ll be able to adjust and accommodate changes without feeling too overwhelmed.

Step 5: Post your schedule

The last step in creating your daily homeschool schedule is putting it in writing. Write down the plan, including times and subjects.

Then post it in a visible place so you can refer to it each day. This will help everyone in the family know what’s expected of them and help keep you on track.

A visual schedule is also a great way to keep younger kids aware of what they should be doing each day. You can even create mini-schedules for more detailed tasks such as reading or math practice.

Once your homeschool schedule is done and posted, you just need to review it each week or month to make sure it’s still working for your family.

Sample Homeschool Schedule

Now that we’ve covered how to create your own homeschool schedule, here are some sample homeschool schedules to use for inspiration. Keep in mind, that these are just examples you can use.

You may have co-ops and group classes that will affect what your homeschool day looks like. You might also need more or less time for certain subjects than is listed below. That’s ok!

This is just a reference to give you an idea of what your day might look like.

How to Create a Homeschool Schedule -Traditional Schedule

Here’s a sample of a traditional homeschool schedule that can be adapted to fit your family’s unique needs and goals. You can use a variation of this from elementary to high school.

8:00 – 8:30 AM: Morning routine (breakfast, getting dressed, etc.)

8:30 – 9:00 AM: Circle time (calendar, weather, song or poem of the day, etc.)

9:00 – 9:30 AM: Math

9:30 – 9:45 AM: Break (get a snack, get some wiggles out, go outside, etc.)

9:45 – 10:30 AM: Language Arts (reading, writing, grammar, spelling)

10:30 – 10:45 AM: Break (get a snack, get some wiggles out, go outside, etc.)

10:45 – 11:15 AM: Science or Social Studies

11:15 – 12:00 PM: Electives (foreign language, coding, etc.)

12:00 – 1:00 PM: Lunch break and free time

1:00 – 2:00 PM: Physical Education (outdoor play, exercise, yoga, etc.)

2:00 – 2:30 PM: Wrap up and review the day’s work

You could of course switch this schedule around depending on what subjects you are covering and if you have any activities you do regularly out of the house.

How to Create a Homeschool Schedule -Block Schedule

In a block schedule, each day is focused on a few subjects, allowing for longer periods of time for each subject. This approach can be helpful for students who need more time to delve deeper into a subject and less time transitioning between subjects.

Here’s an example of a block schedule for homeschoolers:

Monday:

9:00 – 11:00 AM: Math
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Break
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Science
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Lunch break
2:00 – 4:00 PM: History

Tuesday:

9:00 – 11:00 AM: Language Arts (reading, writing, grammar, spelling)
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Break
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Electives (foreign language, coding, music, art, etc.)
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Lunch break
2:00 – 4:00 PM: Physical Education (outdoor play, exercise, yoga, etc.)

Wednesday:

9:00 – 11:00 AM: Math
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Break
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Science
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Lunch break
2:00 – 4:00 PM: Literature

Thursday:

9:00 – 11:00 AM: Language Arts (reading, writing, grammar, spelling)
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Break
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Electives (foreign language, coding, music, art, etc.)
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Lunch break
2:00 – 4:00 PM: History

Friday:

9:00 – 11:00 AM: Math
11:00 – 11:30 AM: Break
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Science
1:30 – 2:00 PM: Lunch break
2:00 – 4:00 PM: Literature

How to Create a Homeschool Schedule -Loop Schedule

In a loop schedule, each day rotates through a list of subjects, with each subject getting equal time and attention. This allows for flexibility and can be helpful for families with multiple children.

The loop schedule can be especially useful if you want to make sure all subjects are covered in a week but don’t want to have a rigid daily schedule. You can also adjust the loop schedule to fit your family’s unique needs and interests, such as adding more time for certain subjects or adjusting the order of the subjects.

Here’s an example of a loop schedule for homeschoolers:

Monday:

  • Math
  • Science
  • Art

Tuesday:

  • Language Arts (reading, writing, grammar, spelling)
  • Social Studies
  • Music

Wednesday:

  • Math
  • Science
  • Health

Thursday:

  • Language Arts (reading, writing, grammar, spelling)
  • Social Studies
  • Physical Education (outdoor play, exercise, yoga, etc.)

Friday:

  • Math
  • Science
  • Electives (foreign language, coding, cooking, etc.)

FAQs About Creating a Reliable Homeschool Schedule

Here are some frequently asked questions about creating a homeschool schedule:

What is a good schedule for homeschooling?

The best homeschool schedule is one that works for your family and helps you stay on track. You’ll want to make sure you have time for core subjects such as math, language arts, science, and social studies.

How do I create a daily schedule for homeschooling?

Creating a homeschool daily schedule will depend on the age of your child and how long you want them to spend on each subject. Start by mapping out the core subjects and then add in breaks, electives, and extracurricular activities that fit into your day. Additionally, be sure to include time for lunch and free play.

How do I make sure my homeschool schedule is flexible?

The key to creating a flexible homeschool schedule is to leave room for change. Make sure you have some buffer time in case activities run longer than expected. Additionally, try to keep the structure of the day consistent but be open to adapting it as needed.

Also, don’t forget to prioritize your child’s mental health and well-being. Make sure you leave plenty of time for breaks and downtime throughout the day so they can stay motivated and engaged in learning. Finally, don’t be afraid to adjust your schedule if something isn’t working.

How many homeschool subjects a day?

That will depend on your child’s age and their individual needs. Generally, younger children should do about 2-4 subjects a day, while older children may be able to handle 4-6 subjects. If doing more than 2-3 subjects a day, try to keep each subject block to one hour or less so that your child can stay focused and engaged.

What is an example of a block schedule for homeschool?

A block schedule is when you divide your day into longer blocks of time, usually two to three hours. In a block schedule, each subject may take up an entire block or be divided into multiple shorter sessions.

For example, you may have a 3-hour math block with 30 minutes devoted to arithmetic, 30 minutes for geometry, and an hour for algebra.

You will most likely do fewer subjects each day with a block schedule, but you will have more time to go into depth on each topic. This can be a great way to give your child more in-depth instruction on the topics they are learning.

Conclusion to How to Create a Reliable Homeschool Schedule

No matter what type of homeschool schedule you choose, the important thing is that it works for both you and your child. Take the time to adjust and tweak it until you find something that fits your family’s lifestyle and educational goals. With a reliable homeschool schedule, your child can make the most of their learning experience and have plenty of time for fun too!

More Helpful Articles & Podcasts on Schedules and Routines

Candice McDaniel
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