As I’ve said before, a great thing about Homeschooling is the flexibility that it allows. This includes determining when we are actually “in session”.
We began to Homeschool my older son when he was in seventh grade. In elementary school, he attended both private and public schools. One constant over those years was that after the three month summer break, it would take him several weeks to get back into the swing of learning. I can remember a few of his teachers thinking that he needed to be held back because he didn’t start off the school year at the grade level that he was in. Once we would get a month or two into the new school year, the teachers would see that he was indeed in the right grade.
While summer vacation is usually viewed as a good thing, it worked against him. When we began to Homeschool him, the atmosphere of learning changed for him. We still had a long summer break, but it wasn’t as long as he had been used to. Instead, we made his breaks during the school year a little longer to give him the same amount of time off, but to decrease the distance between his learning days. It worked well. He graduated high school with good grades and there was no doubt that he was in the right grade.
I have one child in middle school and the other is in elementary school this year. Up until their brother graduated, they were on the same schedule he was. After he graduated, I began to tweak their schedules to better suit our family.
My husband has a schedule where is works five days on one week and then four days on the other. The last thing anyone wants to do when Dad is home is schoolwork. So I began to give them the same day off as Dad. That way we could spend time together as a family.
Having those days off lead to us taking time off at other times during the year when special things come up or when Dad takes vacation. We take time off when relatives visit as well.
When I thought more about it, I wondered why we were taking the summer off. Other than school teachers, almost everyone works throughout the summer. It made sense to me that our children’s schooling should work the same way. That began our switch to year round Homeschooling.
We still have the same amount of days in learning as traditional schools (some years we have a few more days), but our time off is spread out throughout the year. I wish I had been able to do this with my son when he was in elementary school.
Since we have been doing the year round schedule, I have found my children more motivated to do their schoolwork. They look forward to having the same days off as their Dad and the more periodic breaks recharge them.
What about you?
What does your homeschooling schedule look like?
Have you ever tried year round homeschooling?