You’ll find that implementing a daily schedule is a whole lot easier if you’ve already set a weekly schedule. The weekly schedule determines which subjects you will cover each day of the week. The daily schedule helps you figure out how to fit all those subjects together with your students each day.
With all the variations we’ve used over the years, we’ve found that all of those schedules can be categorized into basically two approaches. With one approach, you do all of your Family Work at once, then break to do Independent and Mother-Guided Work until it’s done. The second approach inserts shorter Family Work segments throughout the day, alternating them with Independent/Mother-Guided Work. Either approach is valid. Use whichever works best for your family, and don’t be afraid to tweak them as needed. Life changes; we go through many different seasons, and different schedules work better in some of those seasons than others. That’s the beauty of homeschooling: you can go with the flow and make the changes that will help keep your home running smoothly while preserving your sanity.
Approach One: Family Work in One Block
Approach Two: Family Work in Segments
- We’ve found it far less stressful to use a Time Boxes concept rather than a minute-by-minute schedule. Time Boxes are much more forgiving and “stretchy.” If you stretch a Time Box in the middle of your schedule by an extra fifteen minutes, no problem. When you’re done, you can simply start on the next Time Box without that oh-no-we’re-behind-schedule feeling. And you can always insert other activities in between Time Boxes as needed. If you need to move a couple of Time Boxes to after lunch, you can. If you need to swap two Time Boxes for today, go right ahead. Time Boxes are all about flexible structure.
- Remember to keep lessons short for the younger students: 15–20 minutes is preferred on any one subject. So if you have two or three subjects to cover within a 30-minute time box, allot ten or fifteen minutes per subject. Older students can spend 30–45 minutes per subject, so it is possible that one subject could take up a whole time box. Basically, just keep lessons short when younger students are involved and allow older students to complete their independent work at their own pace.
- Notice how children can do more independent work as they grow older, leaving Mom free to do more guided work with younger children.
- Ignore references to grades in which you have no students. If you have no preschoolers, you can disregard references to them.
- See the Simply Charlotte Mason Curriculum Guide for specific resource suggestions and book lists within each subject.