How to Manage Your Time with a Homeschool Daily Schedule

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Homeschooling with multiple young kids is a challenge! You can’t just work with your older kids and leave your youngest alone and unsupervised. The trouble your youngest will find is astronomical. The solution is to use a homeschool daily schedule.

A good homeschool daily schedule allows you to homeschool your kids, stay on top of your youngest, and enjoy a peaceful house!

Manage Your Time with a Homeschool Daily Schedule

Managing your time begins with your homeschool daily schedule.

Now I know that some people loathe schedules. They interfere with your freedom and ability to adapt. Yet, how much freedom can you have when chaos rules the day? How much freedom do you have when you spend your time chasing unhappy kids?

Also, keep in mind that schedules don’t have to be rigid.

I’ll put together a schedule, but I don’t expect it to hold minute to minute. A large family has too many interruptions. Babies need diaper changes. And a toddler needs a minute to be held. So I use my schedule as an outline for the family routine.

We do our best to stay on schedule, but I don’t drive myself and my kids crazy trying to do so.

Because ultimately the schedule is a tool I use to manage my homeschool.

It’s a tool, not a slave driver whipping us through the day. So I use the schedule as a guide to help me manage my homeschool hours and keep us on track.

My Recommended Homeschool Daily Schedule

My schedules with multiple young children have four crucial parts.

The first part is group study time. The second is individual study time with me. The third is independent work. And the fourth is sibling time.

Group Study Time

Group study time goes by several names. You can call it morning time, circle time, group studies, etc. but it works the same regardless of the name.

The family gathers together to study and learn as a family. Group studies work beautifully for content subjects such as history, science, and art. But I’ve never found it to work well for skill subjects such as reading, writing, or math.

Some group studies become quite elaborate and cover prayer, Bible, read-aloud, history, science, nature study, and fine art each day. The possibilities are endless!

That being said, I’ve always preferred to include a simple group study time in my homeschool daily schedule. So my family usually keeps to history and science, perhaps with a read-aloud thrown in.

Individual Time with Mom

The heart of my homeschool isn’t actually the group study time.

It’s individual one-on-one time with me as I sit down with each child for 30-45 minutes to tutor my child in their individual subjects each day.

During this time, I grade math and language arts. Then I check to ensure all subjects have been done and done to my standard.

We run through missed math problems and check for understanding. I explain the current day’s assignments. So we open up the math book, walk through the lesson, and check for understanding with the practice problems.

My child and I discuss individual books they’re reading.

For me, this is the heart of my homeschool: personal tutoring time with each child every day.

And it’s a wonderful time for me to have one-on-one time with my toddlers and preschoolers as needed. We don’t do formal studies, but instead, read children’s books, do puzzles, and enjoy a few minutes of time together.

So I encourage you to plan to have one-on-one time with each child every morning in your homeschool schedule.

Time with Siblings

If you have a bunch of kids, I know what you’re thinking right now. If Sara sits down with each child for about 30 minutes, what are the other children doing during this time, destroying the house?

No, they’re playing together or doing individual work!

In this case, since the family has a 4yo, I would strongly suggest scheduling sibling playtime. Sibling playtime is simply a time when one of the older kids plays with the preschoolers or toddlers.

The older kids enjoy the break from schoolwork, and your youngest kids adore having time each day playing with older siblings.

Individual Work Time in Your Homeschool Daily Schedule

In addition, you’re going to need time for your children to complete their work independently. In this case, I would schedule homework time.

The school-age kids can sit down at the kitchen table or at their desks and work through their schoolwork. You hover nearby to answer questions and help as needed. Since you’ve already sat down and discussed your children’s assignments with them, they should understand the work they’re doing.

Your youngest child can have a station or desk for quiet play. Playdough, books, puzzles, tangrams, etc. Keep a bucket or rotate toys each week so the playtime stays interesting. Or you can plan a quiet time/nap time during the individual study time.

You can also send a 4yo to play by themselves in their room, play outside. And since you’ve already sat down with the kids to tutor them, you can stay on your feet ready to answer questions, deal with problems, fold laundry, and chase the youngest child.

How to Pull It All Together

So now the question becomes, how do you pull it all together? You have the individual parts, but how do they become a cohesive whole?

Sample Homeschool Daily Schedules

In this sample schedule, I’m going to assume a 9 am homeschool start time, simply because it’s the time I’ve always started my own homeschool.

I enjoy getting up on the earlier side and getting an early start to the day. Plus my kids love being done by noon, giving us the afternoon for classes, exploration, and social activities. That being said, my middle school and high school kids will work into the afternoon, but usually, the entire family can be done and ready for afternoon activities by 2 pm.

But the time you start homeschooling doesn’t matter! There’s nothing magical about starting a day at 9 am other than the fact it’s convenient for my family.

So start your day at the best time for you!

Sample Schedule 1

TimeMomChild A (10yo)Child B (8yo)Child C (4yo)
9 AMGroup TimeGroup TimeGroup TimeGroup Time
Group TimeGroup TimeGroup TimeGroup Time
10 AMMom tutors AWorks with MomPlays with CPlays with B
Mom tutors BPlays with CWorks with MomPlays with A
11 AMMom tutors CIndependent WorkIndependent WorkWith Mom
Preps lunchIndependent WorkIndependent WorkPlay by self
12 PMLunchLunchLunchLunch
Independent WorkIndependent WorkQuiet Time

Another possible schedule is to move the group time to the early afternoon. This is the daily schedule I’ve always favored while homeschooling.

Sample Schedule 2

TimeMomChild A (10yo)Child B (8yo)Child C (4yo)
9 AMMom tutors AWorks with MomPlays with CPlays with B
Mom tutors BPlays with CWorks with MomPlays with A
10 AMMom tutors CIndependent WorkIndependent WorkWorks with Mom
Mom supervisesIndependent WorkIndependent WorkPlays by self
11 AMMom supervisesIndependent WorkIndependent WorkPlay at the table
Preps lunchIndependent WorkIndependent WorkHelps Mom
12 PMLunchLunchLunchLunch
Group StudiesGroup StudiesGroup StudiesGroup Studies

Remember, you’ll need to adjust the sample daily schedules to meet your family’s homeschool needs.

Some kids won’t need so much time doing independent work, while other kids, especially older ones, may need longer. So you can add break or recess time to the middle of the morning and send the kids outside to play. Or do group studies at 11 AM and quiet time or independent work after lunch.

Or you can be done at noon and head out to explore the world!

Weekly Assignment Sheet

Another important component to managing a homeschool with multiple young kids is the weekly assignment sheet. Each child receives an assignment sheet that shows the work expected to be done each week.

This year I’m giving A Plan in Place Grade School Student Planners a try. So far so good! The kids love having their own personal planner to use.

The trick to managing your time with multiple young kids is to use a gentle homeschool daily schedule. Schedule time with each child and plan your day.

The homeschooling schedule will save you countless hours of frustration!

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