Time, it is the bane of a mother’s existence. We can’t seem to ever fit it all in. This is one of the problems that stands in the way of some families when it comes to homeschooling. I was reminded of this problem on Sunday. I was speaking with someone who had been informed that they should plan on 6 hours a day for homeschooling and they weren’t sure that they had time for that. So I come home to turn to the internet and my readers for info.
In a previous piece I wrote on time:
As I am doing preschool I start asking around as to how much time I should be devoting. One friend (who is homeschooling 4) said about 1/2 hour 3 times a week for preschool Then start at 1/2 a day for kindergarten and add 1/2 every year until 4th grade. There are sites that advocate an hour a day, 3 hours a day, and 5-10 a week.
I was wondering if my information was wrong. So I did more research. On eHow they warn you:
Avoid getting locked into “school hours.” It’s surprising how much more you can accomplish in three hours a day than a classroom teacher with 28 students can in six or seven.
eHow also had reminded me that the 3 hours isn’t all “teacher time” and I am already experiencing that. At 5, the NerdBug is already at a point where I can give him instructions and just be nearby in case he has questions. This is also true for art projects.
I also found a great point from Donna Young’s site that you have to make goals and not really run every day the same. There are things like spelling and vocabulary that you want to hit but only a couple of times a week. If you have long range goals that will give you a marker as to how much you need to do. (If you are working on how to schedule your day eHow had some great suggestions do make sure you check it out also.) One of the things I have seen over and over on different sites is that you are teaching your child and that will be different than teaching anyone else. I already see that one child is quick on catching certain concepts but need a little more help on other ones. Also timing is different for each kid. If I were to try to sit the NerdBug in one spot to do book work for more than 1/2 hour (at this point) he would get antsy and belligerent. Quickly he would loose the love of school. I do think as they get older (definately in high school) the kids will devote more time to school. In our house we try to learn 24/7 but sometimes it is sneaky. Everything from watching Jeopardy (NerdBug is starting to get those Bible questions) to cooking to “can you find a way to put all those toys in that box?” to sorting laundry. Also never forget about the learning that takes place between the ages. If you have a child that reads, they can read to the little ones. Right now NerdBug(almost 5) is helping teach the NerdPie(3) her letters while she is telling the Nerdling(10 months) about shapes and colors.
So all said, I believe that homeschooling is a sacrifice of time but it doesn’t cost everything. I saw on one of the sites that said first put in all your priority appointments and then fit in school around it. I know that Bible Study is a priority for me (or mom looses it;). I also am having a new baby this year so I am always off to the doctor. I also serve in my church and my kids understand why that is important. I think scheduling school the way I want makes it all fit better together. So what do all you out in the blogosphere do? I would love to learn from all you out there!