I have something for you to try -- a new school schedule! It’s a bit unusual but it’s worked for lots of families. One year I asked all my pilot moms to try it. As the year progressed, even those who had been a bit skeptical were convinced. They loved the freedom this gave them.
Here’s what I suggest to plan for rest in your homeschool:
Begin your school year earlier than usual, perhaps in July. (That part’s not essential.)
Look at a calendar for the upcoming school year and mark your start date. Then plan 34 weeks of school (36 for high school), writing them on your calendar. (This is a plan, not a mandate, so use a pencil!)
Plan to teach 6 weeks at a time, then give yourself a 2-week break. Why 2 weeks?
- The first week is school catch-up: math lessons that need to be reinforced, books you didn’t finish reading, hands-on projects you didn’t complete. This is a relaxed time - but don’t neglect the purpose. If you are all caught up, pursue any extras that didn’t quite fit in your schedule – field trips, service/ministry opportunities, more projects, more books, other areas of interest.
- The second week is a true holiday from school work. Visit Grandma and Grandpa. Take a family vacation when sites aren’t crowded. Enjoy a "staycation" -- fun time at places near home. Clean out the closet. Pack away summer clothes and take out winter clothes. Etc.
- Adjust (shorten) the six weeks as needed to fit holiday/vacation plans. You might take just one week off at Thanksgiving (it works well to schedule the whole week off) since Christmas break is so close.
- High schoolers are a bit different, since they are more independent. They need to complete 36 weeks and may need to factor in summer jobs. It might be best if they keep working full time during each first “catch-up” week, and only take a holiday during each “second week.”
Here's one mom who tried this schedule last year:
MelissaB wrote: ↑Tue Jul 11, 2017 2:18 pmHi, Marie ~
This is really a great plan.
We've been homeschooling 10 years, and the undone "home projects" that pile up waiting for the end of the year have caused my heart much stress.
We took your plan and put it on the calendar. We highlighted six weeks green, then 2-week breaks in yellow. Even with our 10th grader's 36-week school year, we'll enjoy well over a month of "summer break" at the end of the year - - without the long "To Do" list!
My husband and I discussed it, and we're going to try it this year and see how it goes.
I already look forward to a year where we don't get behind in science or math, and our home stays in better order.
Marie, this is a blessing! Thank you very much for sharing!
MelissaB wrote: ↑Mon Feb 26, 2018 12:08 pmMay I give you one more update using the"new" scheduling method?
We're now more than 2/3 of the way through the school year. Today is a Monday, our first day back after a 2-week break. It's the end of the February, and our oldest daughter just closed her chemistry book and said, "Mom, I love these two-week breaks. Science is interesting again! I'm not overwhelmed, I'm not tired, and I don't feel the pressure of being behind."
Two weeks is all we need to rest and regroup, then everyone's ready to get back to school!
Thank you again for the idea, Marie. Our home, our schooling, and even our countenance is better!
Much Love in Christ ~