This is the second post in our Ask a Veteran Homeschooler Series!
Last month we posted on our facebook page and asked “If you could ask a veteran homeschooler any question what would it be?” We received a lot of questions and responses as well! For the next few weeks we will be highlighting some of these questions and try to answer them for you the best we can!
Disclaimer: Though I have been homeschooling for over a decade, I am not an “expert”, things change on a daily, monthly, yearly basis, and what may work for my family, may not necessarily work for yours and vice versa. This is the beauty of homeschooling!
“How do you cover every subject without taking up the entire day?”
This is a great question especially for new homeschoolers. I think one of the misconceptions that new homeschoolers get sucked into, due to outside pressure, is that your homeschool day needs to replicate that of a classroom and that each subject needs to be taught daily for x amount of time a day etc… It is so important to remember that your home is NOT a classroom! There may be some families that are able to tackle every subject every day, but if you have multiple children, a home to care for, people to cook and clean for and outside activities, this can be difficult.
So to answer this question personally:
How do I cover every subject without taking up the entire day? I don’t!
When I was only schooling one I was able to do this, but I found that my son enjoyed History or Science more when we devoted extra time to that specific subject with living books, activities and experiments to go with what we were studying. I noticed we were spending more time on one particular subject so this naturally turned into us alternating what days we did Science and what days we did History.
We do not do History and Science every day. We always do the 3 R’s daily. We do Bible in the morning, reading, phonics, spelling, handwriting and math. This is a normal daily routine we tend to stick to. After chores and lunch is when we get to our afternoon school block. We do History twice a week and Science twice a week. Friday is when we attend a homeschool group, field trips or catch up on what we didn’t finish during the week. This gives us a nice block of afternoon time to really dig in and work on our notebooks, read living books, watch videos and more. We love this time and are usually able to knock out a lot of our lesson in one day even! My highschooler even rotates what he is doing and doesn’t always do the same subjects every day. It’s nice to mix it up and add some variety.
I even know of some families who do Bible and the 3 R’s daily and teach History and Science on a rotating 9 week or semester basis. They will knock out an entire year of one subject in a short amount of time and focus specifically on that until they are finished and then move on to something else. You can also do unit studies that incorporate all the subjects and then it doesn’t seem like you are having to tackle so many individual subjects every.single.day taking up the whole day!
Homeschooling can be such a beautiful thing if you let it work for your family and don’t push to replicate a daily school room. The sky is the limit with what you can teach, what you can learn and how you learn it. Let it work for your family, please do not stress about trying to do it all and pray for wisdom and creativity on how and when to do everything.
Check out the first post in this series:
How do you get your husband involved in school?