Creating an intentional homeschool routine

It’s official. You’ve made the decision to homeschool this year and now it’s time to figure out a schedule. In my ten years of homeschooling, I've learned that our style is very much relaxed, but still purposeful. A flexible routine without a set timeline works best for our family. My goal is to give my children a rich education, with plenty of room to dive deep into the subjects that interest them. If this sounds like what you're hoping to accomplish in your homeschool too, keep reading to download my free homeschool schedule template and for tips on how to achieve an intentional homeschool routine. 

1. Identify your anchors and build around them. These are the things that are a MUST for your family to function well daily: meals, nap times, commitments, etc. Begin by listing these anchors out in the order that you normally do them. Your homeschooling priorities should be attached to the anchors. Meal times are the anchors in our routine. We split our school time into two simple blocks. Morning block, which comes after breakfast and afternoon block, which comes after lunch. Once you’ve figured out yours, building your day around them is easy.

2. Be flexible. You'll notice on our routine (pictured above) that we don't set specific times for any of our home learning or even our mealtimes. This allows us the freedom to make adjustments as needed. Even so, most of our tasks still happen around the same time every day. Our day typically starts around 9am when we meet for breakfast, but when one of us sleeps in and things are delayed, it's really not a big deal because there are no time limits or deadlines to meet. We move from one item to the next, without rushing through. Some days, the order in which we do things changes. Other days, we might skip something altogether. This schedule serves as an outline for our day, but it is not set in stone.

3. Keep it simple. Do not saturate your day with school assignments and lessons. Not only will you overload your children, but you will burn yourself out early on and throw in the towel before you truly get to experience the joys of homeschooling. Instead, choose only a few subjects to be done daily. For us, that’s math, ELA, and social studies. Then, add a couple enrichment studies like music, STEM, or art. In our home, enrichment subjects are on a once per week rotation. So we end up doing a total of four subjects + reading time daily. And although learning happens all of the time, our structured homeschool time lasts about 3-4 hours.

One last piece of advice, give yourself grace. I can almost guarantee that you will put a lot of thought into your new homeschool routine, only to find out that it’s not going like you hoped. You’ll likely find yourself having to reevaluate after the first few days and slowly weeding out what isn’t working. This is totally normal, even for us seasoned homeschoolers. Be gentle with yourself as you figure it out and in time, you’ll end up with a routine that’s just right for your family and lifestyle.

I've made a blank version of our homeschool routine available for free, to give you a starting point for your own. Download your free copy HERE