Wondering what other homeschooler’s daily schedules look like? Take a glimpse into our little homeschool world and see what eclectic education looks like on a day to day basis.
What is eclectic homeschooling? Well, basically it is a relaxed method of homeschooling that takes aspects of the other homeschooling methods, such as classical, Charlotte Mason, unschooling, and combines them in a way that works for your family. Check out Our Eclectic Homeschool to see why we chose this method.
So, what does our weekly schedule look like? Below are the weekly checklists that I have created for each kiddo. Every Monday morning I print a new weekly list for them to work through each day. These checklists also serve as part of our school records. Each week I make note of special accomplishments, missed days with explanations, and other relevant info.
Our Weekly Checklists
I have a basic idea of how long our checklist will take us each day, but things do not always go as planned so I have learned to be flexible, which can be a challenge since this does not come naturally to me. On good days, school typically takes 2 – 3 hours. I try to get us started by 9:30 am and wrap up at lunchtime. Fortunately, in the mornings I am able to get breakfast ready, gather materials and get other household tasks done before school starts since our kids are not early birds.
After The Checklist
Thing 1 and Thing 2 know that once the day’s checklist items are completed, they are free from “school time.” After school work and chores are done, they are free to enjoy doing their own thing. Free time usually consists of building legos, experimenting in the kitchen, playing like monkeys outside, reading books they love, crafting, or heading out to play with friends.
This is their time to be free to follow their interests, enjoy some alone time or play with friends.
Our weekly schedules were not something that I just magically created. They were created by aligning our school year calendar with my curriculum choices. Unless you are unschooling, I encourage you to map out your school year in advance. Creating a basic plan of accomplishments funnels down as a guide for creating the details of to-dos for each school day. I find comfort in having a plan of action for core worktexts being completed. Yes, sick days, bad days, and “oh no, we have to go do this” days will all come up, but having a guide plan allows me to keep tabs on where we are.
Lesson Driven Schedule
As I mentioned in Why Not Consider Year-Round Homeschooling, we school year round so our daily workload is not overwhelming. The kids’ daily lessons are not based on time, they are based on lesson completion. They must complete the number of lessons assigned for the day before marking a subject complete.
The main advantages of a lesson driven schedule are:
- Planning – Easier to plan school calendar based on your worktext lesson count since lesson can easily equal days
- Incentive – Provides an incentive to get through the lessons in order to move on to other things (It is amazing what my kids can get done in such a short time when they know they can watch a movie or have a playdate once lessons are done.)
- Eliminates Time Constraints – Removes the pressure of a clock ticking, allowing time for an in-depth study of a lesson
- Catch-up – Easier to determine what needs to be done to get back on track for those days that school just ends up not being in the cards
Some of the disadvantages to keep in mind are:
- Time – Varying learning times since each day’s lessons and attitudes towards them will be different (We have had math lessons take hours instead of minutes because Thing 1 woke up on the wrong side of the bed.)
- Daily Schedule – Difficulty in planning an hour by hour schedule since lesson times vary each day. If you like to lay out your schedule by the hour, this will be difficult for you. It is more realistic to block off a set amount of hours each day for learning. (I bought a beautiful detailed daily planner for our first year and I am sad to say that it did not last more than a week.)
Just That Simple
There you have it, a glimpse into our homeschool days. We are able to fulfill the kids’ educational needs and have some fun by utilizing:
- Lesson Driven Schedule
- Weekly Checklists
- Lots of Fiction and Non-Fiction Books
- Hands On Learning Activities
- Free Time for Personal Interests
I would love to hear your thoughts or questions about our eclectic schedule. Or let me know how this post helped during your planning. I look forward to reading your comments below!
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