I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my daily digest via email or RSS feed. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

A Day in the Life of The Unlikely Homeschool

With school starting in only three days, it’s time to put the last finishing touches on our upcoming plan.  If you are a frequent reader of The Unlikely Homeschool, you probably know that I like to have a clear layout…a flexible plan for our comings and goings.  And although I have our year’s lesson plans completely written out already, I SUPRISINGLY don’t have a schedule in place, NOR do I plan to. 

Dividing sentences between subjects and predicates

On the whole, I prefer to make a “Daily Flow” which is really just a glorified list of “to do’s”.  I order our school subjects into three different categories, core work (Daily Devotions, Language Arts, and Math), living literature subjects (History and science), and extra curriculars (everything else).  When I am putting together a “flow” to our school day, I try and organize it in such a way that this simple TRIO of categories gets rotated.  The rotation looks something like this:

  • Core Subject-which is typically more workbook based
  • Living Literature-reading based
  • Extra Curricular-hands on/project oriented
  • Short Break
  • Repeat until all subjects have been completed or the clock strikes 5:00, whichever comes first

This gives a nice variety to the ebb and flow of our day by providing opportunity for a mix of both quiet, sustained learning and movement/motor exercises.

acrylic painting art lesson

That being said, I realize the majority of homeschool moms love to learn how other “typical” school days occur, so for the sake of the curious, I have put together a general outline of “A Day in the Life of The Unlikely Homeshcool.”  I’ve assigned time slots simply as an example.  We typically start and end school at similar times each day, and everything else just falls where it falls.

Letter B Alphabet book

  • 7:30 Everyone slowly stirs from bed.
  • 7:30-8:15 Children watch morning cartoons while I feed the baby and make breakfast
  • 8:15-8:30 Children clean their rooms and “make” their beds
  • 8:30-9:00 Breakfast, Good Morning basket time (personal devotions)
  • 9:00-10:00 Shower and dress
  • 10:00-12:00 First set TRIOS
  • 12:00-12:30 Make lunch while the Littles pick up the main level of the house
  • 12:30-1:30 Lunch time with the Hubs who comes home to eat every weekday
  • 1:30-2:00 Afternoon chores/piano practice
  • 2:00-2:30 Read aloud/hand work time
  • 2:30-4:45 Second set of TRIOS
  • 4:45-5:00 We all do our part to pick up the main level of the house again.
  • 5:00-5:30 Children watch their favorite show while I make dinner/the Hubs comes home
  • 5:30-6:30 Dinner as a family
  • 6:30-8:00 This varies depending upon the day.  But, generally, we are either playing a family game, attending a meeting, grocery shopping, or hosting some dinner guests.
  • 8:00 Bedtime for all the Littles
Toss in several spilled drinks, a few dirty diapers, and numerous moments of general chaos and you have our “typical” school day.

Alphabet tiles for spelling lesson

And right about this time, I’m sure you are entertaining notions of emailing me my #1, most frequently asked question…WHAT DO YOU DO WITH YOUR LITTLEST ONES DURING THE SCHOOL DAY?  Well, that is a post entirely in itself, but for the “short answer”, you’ll have to check out my Tot Trio Series.

Color Paint Chip Match Game-The Unlikely Homeschool

Want to know what other homeschooling families are up to during the school day?  Head on over to iHomeschool Network for the NOT Back-to-School blog hop and find out!


  1. We also have more of a list of to-do's instead of a schedule. The idea of ordering subjects in a trio is really interesting--that may be a good fit for my son as he gets older.

    1. It works for us because I have kids with different learning styles. We are never stuck in one style for too long.

  2. We have flow rather than a set schedule too. Your day looks really good!

  3. I don't schedule either. There's a general idea in my head, but let's face it, schedules are NOT me.

    1. And it's funny, because they are TOTALLY me. They just don't work for our school day with really little ones who are unscheduleable.

  4. I asked my son what he would prefer a schedule or a todo list. He chose the schedule. I have the todo list in the back of my mind as a plan B. If my schedule fails I'll be coming back to glean ideas.

    1. That's what's so great about homeschooling. Your day can be unique to your home.

  5. i have tried making plans in the past and it never worked for me. we would either move faster or slower...live would happen...and we would abandon the plan.

    new to your blog...looking forward to following you :)

    1. Glad to have you, Theresa. I completely agree with the Too fast...Too slow.

  6. I loved reading your post, and I can say in some ways I think we really do have more of a to do list than a set schedule, or rather maybe a hybrid of the two!

  7. I love your idea of a flow... I have a schedule but keep myself flexible on times. It comes in handy when you have sick days, which we have been fighting! Great post!
    Learning 4 Keeps

  8. I found your blog and LOVE it! I'm a homeschooling mom of four girls. Ages 7, 5, 3 and our little newbie is almost 6 weeks old. I love hearing how other moms schedule. Thanks for sharing! You have a beautiful family!

    1. It's always nice to be able to peak into someone else's day. So glad you've found me. Hope you continue to find this to be a place of help and encouragement.

  9. I have only one child but in the past two years we have developed a hybrid schedule as well. I like to try and accomplish more in the morning time when he is fresh for learning and a lunch break then finish up by 3 most time. I developed a "school responsibilities" list to keep my active son on task. It has times but not subjects. He has to maintain a 93% ave on his assignments in order to have tv and video games after school. This year I have decided to add in a domestics class where he will accomplish his chores but also add in a sewing,cooking, and handyman class once a week. I have bible lessons set up but like the quiet time devotions you mentioned and am going to see about adding that first thing each morning.

  10. What times of the day do you do the things you need to do, like having your own devotions, blogging, meal planning, and so-on?

    1. The short answer is that after the kids go to bed at 8, I exercise and then do house/blog work until 10 or 11. I will be posting an updated schedule in a few weeks during the 2013 NOT Back to School Blog Hop. This will give more details as to MY schedule. I hope you'll join me.

  11. Hi there :) New to your page and it has helped me a lot already :) Thank you so much for taking time to create it. I am sure you are helping so many families.

    Quick question: Is it your goal to get to each of your subjects in the TRIOS every day? Or do you rotate them daily? Thank you :)

    1. No. I do not do all the subjects each day. Science and History are done every other day. If we are doing Science on Monday, we will do History on Tues. and so on. We do about one elective each day. So, subjects like art, creative writing, typing, etc. get done once a week.

  12. When you refer to your second set of trios, are your older children doing their schoolwork? Sometimes I feel like we are busy all day long with school, trying to balance things out ..
    Your blog has been such a blessing to me and has put that spark of creativity and Fun into homeschooling that disappeared somewhere for the last month ..thanks, Heather

    1. Yes. They are all working on something at this point while the toddler naps.
      Glad you're here and that you've been encouraged.



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