Scheduling your homeschool day can seem overwhelming at first, so seeing examples of other families’ schedules can help you get started. In this video below, we share four common types of schedules, each from real families using The Good and the Beautiful curriculum in their homeschools.
Traditional Block Schedule
The traditional block schedule is best for teaching specific subjects at specific times. This example shows how a family with four school-aged children has scheduled their days.
- Block scheduling works great for families who thrive when life is more structured.
- When one or both of the homeschooling parents work, scheduling schoolwork at specific times can ease stress and keep everyone accountable.
- Some children feel more comfortable when they know exactly what is happening each day. This schedule brings peace to children who like routine.
If you choose to use a block schedule, make sure to have a backup plan for how to handle interruptions. Some families have a “scaled down” schedule, or a Plan B, that they use when unexpected events occur.
With a relaxed schedule, the focus isn’t on the exact time of day schoolwork is done, but rather the necessary subjects get covered in a general period of time. This is ideal for families who like routine but find that working with a strict schedule creates stress.
- These children have bigger gaps in their days than with a block schedule, which works well for younger children or those who just can’t sit still very long.
- A relaxed schedule is a semi-structured homeschool plan, but also very flexible to your family’s needs. This family keeps Fridays open for field trips, appointments and other things that come up.
This second example is how one family schedules their homeschool hours around the parents’ work schedules. Many families find that evenings and even weekends work well for school lessons. Our easy-to-teach, open-and-go courses make this type of scheduling ideal for families that need flexibility.
An even more relaxed schedule is a loop schedule. This family has decided how many times they would like to cover each subject every week. They organize it into a list, and begin working at the top of the list. Schoolwork doesn’t need to be done at a particular time; instead it can be completed whenever is best each day. When the list is finished, they just start again at the top. Our family-style courses fit perfectly into a loop schedule, as history and science can be taught to a variety of ages at one time.
All homeschool parents understand that unexpected events interrupt school time, and sometimes it can be difficult to adjust timed schedules to allow for those interruptions. A loop schedule accommodates this.
Loop schedules are great for families who know what subjects they want to cover, but also need extra flexibility in how much time is spent on any subject. If children become very interested in a particular botany concept, for example, parents can expand on it for as long as they’d like. A family can also spend less time on lessons that the children have learned quickly.
This second sample shows a loop schedule where a few core subjects (language arts, math, and handwriting) are done daily, and other subjects rotated throughout the week. This works great for courses that do not need to be completed every day and are done family-style, like history or science, and electives like typing or arts and crafts.
Our last schedule is a simple daily or weekly checklist to keep both students and parents focused on the tasks they want to do, but not at any specific time.
- Works well for older children: A checklist teaches older children how to manage their time, a necessary skill in adulthood. The Good and the Beautiful curriculum is designed to foster independence as children mature and become more independent in their learning.
- Checklists are also great visuals for children of any age. A checklist helps them see what needs to be done each week, and can easily be added onto any other scheduling style as a management tool.
While choosing a schedule style, consider which children and subjects need more one on one time and those who can work independently. You might be surprised at the young age many children can complete lessons, or parts of lessons, on their own. This contributes to a love of learning and independence, which is so valuable for a child’s self-confidence!
Finally, be flexible and give yourself grace.
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, the beauty of homeschooling is that formal education doesn’t need to happen during typical school hours. Saturdays, evenings….schoolwork can happen anytime!
Our courses are developed with the intentional purpose of providing you that flexibility, but also the academic rigor needed to give your children a well-balanced, high-quality education! If you are unsure of what will be the best fit for your family, try out a few different ways of scheduling your days to learn what works and what doesn’t. Many homeschool parents rotate different schedules in different years, or even in the same school year.
This is the true good and beautiful aspect of homeschooling. It’s up to you. Your schedule must fit your family at any given time. Learn from others, but make it your own too!