One size does not fit all! Never is this more true than when you're talking about teaching children. And on top of that we have to add in the fact that you have your own work schedule and our nation is facing a health crisis. For this reason, we are not posting some pretty schedule with every subject and ever hour accounted for. It just won't work---unless your have perfect kids. Unfortunately, we don't in our home.
So what schedule will work? The answer is simply: The schedule that fits your family needs. I know, I know. What does that even mean? To help you identify what schedule will work for your family, we've created a list of questions to help you find a schedule that will meet those needs.
After you answer those questions, check out our Resource Library and find the closest match to your family's needs. We've create 9 different versions of schedules and checklists to help you find one (or a combination) that works for you. Additionally, they are all editable so you'll be able to adjust them to find a perfect customized fit.
1. Can your child read?
The good news is that a younger child usually does not have as much essential work. If you cut out busy work, often younger homeschoolers spend less than 2 hours doing school work. The bad news is that non-readers will need more time directly with parents since they can't read instructions and text by themselves. Our schedules have both reader and non-reader versions to accommodate this important distinction.
2. When do you have the most freetime in your day?
Depending on your personal work schedule that may be first thing in the morning, the evening, or possibly could be only on the weekends. Younger kids often need more direct instruction or reading of instructions for certain assignments. We've made three schedule versions for parents depending on when you are most able to assist kids with homework.
3. Are there certain online meeting times your child is supposed to attend with their classroom or teacher?
Many of you will have a more complex schedule simply because certain times may be set by the school during the next couple weeks. While this isn't ideal, you probably won't have too much flexibility. If the schedule is making you feel overwhelming though, don't be afraid to tell your child's teacher and ask them what you can let go until things settle down a little bit more in your home.
4. How much device time do you want to allow on a school day?
During a crisis like this, while you're trying to find a balance, it's likely that you will allow more screen-time than normal. This is TOTALLY OK! Do what you need to make it through the day at this point. But have an amount in mind so that you slowly work towards your long-term goal. Our schedule templates do not have much screen time in them because our kids do not do well behaviorally when they are on their devices all day, but we've adjusted these amounts over the years. Some kids do well with a TV show in between assignments as a reward, but usually we try to make our kids wait until they are done with their independent work at least. But do what works for your kids and family needs.
5. How long can your kids stay focused without a check-in?
Being honest here: this can be as short as 5-10 minutes for kids when they're first starting out doing school work from home. It takes an adjustment after regular school settings. Our kids started homeschooling this year after being in a traditional classroom for several years and it was a bit of an adjustment for them. This is where you give yourself GRACE! Don't stress the small stuff and if it's not working one day, give everyone a break and try again tomorrow.
Check out these FREE schedules available in our Resource Library. And if you still need one customized for your family or want specific tips for your family, schedule a free appointment with us. We're here for you!