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My oldest son turned 3 this April. I told myself I would start getting more serious about homeschooling him at his third birthday, regardless of the fact that April is not the typical time to “start” a school year. The thing with homeschooling is you’re free of the constraints of typical school schedules! You want to start homeschooling in June? Go for it! You need a break in February? Though if you are planning on enrolling them in school eventually, some changes to school-like scheduling should be put in place to help them adjust. Some professional school readiness programs could help in this regard, or you can make the changes and preparations yourself. Whatever the case, You’re the head master of your own school, and it’s schedule should be run according to what works for you and your family 🙂

I know you came to this post looking for tips on how to schedule your own homeschooling day, and I will definitely give you some starting points and tips, but I think it’s important to emphasize that each family is unique. I am sharing what works for my family. Just keep in mind your own schedule/routine is going to be unique to your needs. With that being said, it’s always nice to have staring point which you can tweak as you go.

Start here: Lesson Plans
I would HIGHLY recommend having a lesson plan book or binder. It does miracles for providing you with a simple sort of accountability and reduces the stress of thinking of something to do at the last minute.

This is what mine looks like before I fill in our activities:
You’ll notice I only have a few “subjects”. Again, this is just to provide me with some kind of accountability. I can do literacy activities all day long- but I actually have to plan and think about how to incorporate things like math and motor skills! Using something like a dryerase roll could help with making lessions simple and convenient.
Filling in your lesson plans
Pinterest is your best friend here! Follow boards of people who are dedicated to sharing preschool learning activities (I hope you’ll start by following Munchkins and Moms!). Make your own boards dedicated to the subjects you plan on teaching. Fill up those boards with lots of fantastic idea! I refer to my Pinterest boards every single week while I plan our days.

You can choose to plan your lessons based on themes (insect theme, ocean theme, specific books), around a “Letter of the Week”, or just leave it open ended. I use a mixture of all three 🙂
Here’s what my lesson plans typically look like when filled in:
Some of the activities can be done independently, but if I have it scheduled I try to make an effort to be present during the activities. That way I can reinforce counting when we do puzzles, lace-up specific words when we use our alphabet beads, etc.
Scheduling your day
I specifically DO NOT keep to a hard and fast daily schedule. We have a routine, but I allow for lots of flexibility! Remember that for your own schedule. Try not to let time-lines stress you out 🙂 As a matter of fact, our lessons are used as more of a checklist. I don’t do them in order or at certain times during the day. And if the kids are in the middle of playing, I won’t interrupt that (play is important!). Lessons after meals works pretty well for us 🙂 (Don’t forget there are plenty of lessons to be learned DURING meal prep as well!)
(learning with our Teepee Alphabet cards)

Frequently Asked Questions
How long should I plan for each
It will depend on your child. I know my kids won’t sit
still for a formal lesson for more than 15 minutes, and I find that is
pretty typical for this age. Sometimes it’s only 5 minutes, and that’s
ok! Activities (which is what I plan the majority of the time) can last
as long as an hour!

What should I teach? Every child grows and progresses differently, which is why it is important to look at your child individually. Take an inventory: What does my child already know? (Recognizes uppercase alphabet, counts to 10, knows colors, can use scissors, etc.) Start teaching there. Try not to worry about what they “should know”. Just start where they are and continue building on that knowledge. And don’t forget to build on their interest! If they love tractors (I use this again because it is one of our top interests!) give them lots of knowledge there (parts of a tractor, names of the different types of tractors, their specific jobs, etc). If they love singing then why not look for YouTube videos of children singing so they can join in and have some fun? While this may not be “preschool knowledge,” it is something that is important to them. Remember that homeschooling is a blessing because you have this great opportunity to personalize their instruction! Have fun with it! 🙂

Do you have another question? Leave a comment so I can answer it for others who might be wondering the same thing!

Parting words

I aim for our preschool to be light and fun, so I don’t like to “force” subjects. I allow for my kids’ interests to lead many of our activities (have you seen our 10 ways to play with toy tractors? That list was inspired by their interest!) and our planned lessons don’t always get done. I change the lessons very often as the kids lead us into certain teachable moments throughout the day. You’ll do the same.

And if at some point you feel it is better to enroll your kid in school, make sure to find the best school possible. Your kid needs to adjust to the new style of curriculum and teaching. Also, do spend a good amount of time researching the school. It is about your child’s education, and you cannot compromise on the quality. The Schoolguide.co.uk has been updated league tables, and you might find such resources helpful while searching for a primary school.

Remember the quote at the start of this post- don’t forget that it is YOU who is in charge how to school your kids in your home! So don’t feel bad when things don’t go according to plan, just make adjustments until you find what works for you 🙂

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