It's almost that time again - planning your homeschool calendar. Developing your calendar for the year doesn't have to be difficult; you can do it in an hour or two in the summer. Once you created the calendar, you can move forward with planning your homeschool year.
Everyone has different calendar ideas and plans. What works for one homeschool family won't work for another; we're all different! Homeschooling offers that freedom -freedom to plan and develop your school just how your family needs and wants it.
Most states require a set number of school days or hours, not a single state requires you to school on any specific day. Not having to follow the traditional school calendar gives families freedom.
So, to help you pick and develop a homeschool calendar, let's look at a few different schedule options that parents use.
6 Homeschool Calendar Ideas
1. Traditional Scheduling
Traditional scheduling is what a typical public school system would use. It starts in August, usually towards the end, and goes through May. This system met the needs of early farmers, but the method has stuck over the years so that families have the summers together.
The main advantage of traditional schooling means that you can take vacations with your kids in the summer. Your family can participate in all of the fun, summer activities planned for the months, and you get to take advantage of the warm weather.
2. Year-Round Schooling
Many homeschoolers use a year-round schooling calendar, but that actually just means they school during the summer.
This method looks different for all families. Whenever our family used a year-round schooling schedule, we took a month off in the summer, a month off around Christmas, and several other breaks shattered throughout the year.
While some people think that year-round schooling is cruel to the kids, many kids love the Christmas break. When the temperatures are too hot outside to enjoy, kids can buckle down and get school work done. Vacations can be taken during a break in the summer or whenever the family wants.
3. Sabbath Schooling
Many families I know use the sabbath schooling method, and they love it. They school year-round with six weeks on and then one week off. Knowing that they have breaks coming gives parents the chance to catch up on housework, schedule vacations, or just relax for a solid week.
Some families also rotate different subjects throughout these six weeks. Memory work might change each term, as well as the focus for art studies and musical appreciation. You can schedule three terms of science and three terms of history - whatever works for your family.
4. Calendar Schooling
When we first began homeschooling, we followed the calendar schooling method. We took the entire month of December off and then began our school year in January. January brought all new subjects, which means the kids were interested and came out of break excited.
For state purposes, your kids might have to "grade up" in the fall if you have to turn a notice in, but it's only a formality for the state. You can plug a break during the summer as well. The start dates are just moved around.
5. Loop Scheduling
Do you feel behind often? Loop scheduling helps you feel like you get everything done without being behind. It always seems like homeschooling days are interrupted.
So, you create a loop schedule. Make a list of every subject that you want to accomplish. Each day or week you put the time aside to work on the loop. During that time, you pick up where you left off. You might get one subject done or three done. The next day, you pick up and keep going.
6. Blocking Scheduling
Block scheduling is kind blocks. You do fewer subjects because you don't do the same subjects every term. You can create blocks to be any length - six, eight, ten, or more weeks.
This type of schedule works well for high schoolers because it resembles college more than the other types. For example, your student might study composition and grammar, history and math for one semester. Then, the next semester, they change to science, literature, and foreign language.