How to Schedule Homeschool

I recently uploaded a new video on how to schedule homeschool which promised a printable of examples, so I thought I would use this post to give you a link to the video, share the free pdf of examples, and give you some notes from the video.

First, the notes:

When you are doing homeschool scheduling, establish routine for your HOME, because this is HOME-schooling.

(Remember, we are teaching our children how to LIVE, not how to school.)

Sure, we have the freedom to roll out of bed at 11 AM, then stay in our P.J.’s until two (or later)–but that gets old really quick.

We don’t have to go to the opposite extreme, either. Getting your kids up at crack o’ dawn and having them scrubbed and inspected by early o’clock gets just as old just as quickly.

Instead, strike an even balance. 7 or 7:30 am is a decent time for the rooster to crow (unless you have a super-loud rooster like my dear daughter who likes to crow at 5 am each day).

After this, teach everyone to tend to the basics they will be tending to for the rest of their lives:

  • Make the bed.
  • Get dressed in clean clothes and straighten the body.
  • Fuel up in body, soul, and spirit.

Then, tend to the abode:

  • Clean up after breakfast.
  • Clean the bedrooms.
  • Clean the bathrooms.
  • Clean the common areas.
  • Tend to the animals and other growing things.
  • Do some laundry.

FINALLY…sit down to concentrated academics.

If everyone is up by 7:30, this should be possible by 10 or 10:30 (if this is taking too long, it’s time to declutter and organize).

At this time, it’s good to start with a homeschool routine:

First, “Together Time.”

If there are littles, begin with some wiggles to “get the energies out.” Then, settle down for some reading aloud–figure in some extra time for explaining and exploring as you read.

It’s good to start with the Bible and perhaps a hymn or two. Then go into a novel for at least 15 minutes.

Follow this up with book work.

First math, then practice in reading, writing, spelling and grammar. We put this stuff first because it is most important, so if you get derailed, at least you have covered the basics. It’s good to make this as self-directed as possible. I use things such as the McGuffey readers and Gentle Grammar. Ray’s Arithmetic and Saxon Math can be turned over to one’s child at a certain time so that they can operate on “auto pilot.” (I have a number of suggestions for history and science in my mega-post on homeschooling for cheap or free.)

About 12:00 is Lunch Break.

Make it a snack (or planned leftovers) so it takes very little time (or have lunch boxes already packed in the fridge for each child to take out at will).

Then, after refueling and straightening up, older kids can finish up, little kids can play, and Mom can do some laundry or take care of other household duties.

…or…everyone has quiet time; the olders complete their work, the youngers rest and read, Mom gets some quiet time and rest.

In an hour or so, it’s up and at it!

This is “free time.” Our kids either play outside or tackle some of their own projects, such as learning an instrument, drawing, going on walks, etc.

After this is another quick pick up and dinner prep.

Kids can take turns either helping you cook, or getting dinner up for the family on their own. The rest can do a quick straighten, fold clothes, etc.

After this is family time, then preparations for the next day and bed time.

There can be several variations on this model, of course, such as if Daddy works the late shift, etc. When our daddy worked the night shift, we held our version of “night school” and switched our family time to late morning and early afternoon.

While every family is unique, with different schedules, needs, even outside activities, this basic outline should give you a place to start.

Here is the video to go along with the notes:

And here is the download:

homeschool scheduling

15 thoughts on “How to Schedule Homeschool”

  1. Thank you so much Sherry – I have been binge-watching all your videos, and am SO very thankful for your practical advice and wisdom. I have also just started using your lesson books and record books – they are wonderful! THANK YOU for leading in such a godly, humble, and practical way. You are a literal answer to prayer – to have a (practical/godly/experienced Charlotte mason style) mentor on our homeschool journey! Thank you so much for leading the way and for all your time and effort – I am so grateful for you!

    • Aww–helping others makes it all worth while! Thank you for taking precious time out of your day to send me an encouraging word 🙂

  2. Thank you so much! I’ve been looking for a homeschool schedule like this. Clicking on the download doesn’t seem to work.

  3. Sherry, as usual, this was very well timed! I love coming to your blog to recharge and refresh my mama heart. Thank you for the time, effort, and wisdom that you put into each post. We’ve been homeschooling for years but recently it’s felt very robotic and rushed. Figuring out how to establish a calm routine is exactly what I’ve been feeling like we were missing and your post arrived in my mailbox at the perfect time! God is good!

    Real quick note: for some reason the link for the download doesn’t seem to be working. I’ve tried clicking on the pictures and the words for a link and can’t find it. It looks like it’s a great pdf and I can’t wait to utilize the routine in my own home.

  4. Hi Sherry,
    The link doesn’t seem to be working. I’ve tried using different devices in case it was a problem with my laptop…but no matter what, the picture isn’t clickable. Looking forward to using this schedule layout!

    • I’m so sorry the link was not done correctly–I have since corrected it so you can download–sorry for not catching it sooner!

  5. Thank you so much for this! This has been an answered prayer. I recently watched your video on this topic and it’s exactly what I needed to hear. As someone newer to homeschooling, I’ve been struggling so much with trying to “fit everything in” and then giving up because I kept feeling like I was failing and falling behind. So I appreciate your honesty that we really just can’t do everything, but need to focus on what’s truly important! Though it’s not the first time I’ve heard that, the way you presented everything makes it much more tangible and applicable, along with the printouts. Now I just need to make sure I actually follow through! ^.^

    • I’m so very glad this was helpful, Kristy. Once upon a time I was a new homeschooler, and everything was a mystery to me. I was so thankful back then for the precious people who took their time to answer my questions and give me reassurance. Now it’s my turn to do the same!

  6. Thank you so very much for this post and video! I am so very grateful for the ideas! I was wondering, when you mention ‘Tending to the Abode,’ does this time of cleaning in the morning include tasks such as vacuuming, dusting, cleaning bathrooms or is this time a general pick up and daily clean up time? I have tried two ways of scheduling the cleaning: 1) spread throughout the week or 2) all scheduled on a Friday. I would love your thoughts and ideas on this! Thank you!

    • I actually do both! We clean (vacuuming is twice daily), including the bathrooms, daily, plus we have a special clean on Friday. Hope this helps!

      • Thank you so much! Yes it is helpful! I would love to know more about your cleaning routines…maybe a blog post or video sometime? 🙂
        Since you have a special clean on Friday, do you still have your homeschool routine on Friday, or is the homeschool routine only for 4 days a week?

        • I tend to do active academics only four days a week (although we count our life-stuff as “school” on Fridays, too, lol!). I’ll make a note of doing a cleaning routine post or two, thank you for your input :).


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