One of the burning questions of many families considering homeschool or being thrown into homeschool suddenly is how to schedule a day. How long does a homeschool day take? Let’s chat!
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When I stumbled on this article, I was so happy to finally see a reasonable discussion of homeschool schedules in real life.
Because real life doesn’t always look like a traditional school schedule. In fact, it probably shouldn’t!
Why does homeschooling only take a fraction of the time a day in the classroom takes? Because you’re more efficient and effective in a one-on-one set-up. Homeschooling is essentially tutoring, even if you’re not working every single moment with your child.
How long is long enough?
The Illinois State Board of Education has been giving guidance that seems about right for how long to spend homeschooling each day.
A kindergartener can be considered “done” with formal learning after about 20-30 minutes each day! Sixty minutes would be at the very top end. The rest of the day is real life and play!
Because while kindergarten students in a traditional school might spend six hours at school, not all of that time is active learning time. If you’ve ever been to school, you know this. As a former classroom teacher, I know this.
Homeschooled elementary kids might only spend 2 hours per day in formal academics, and high schoolers clock in at about 4 hours.
Let’s do a little math to see if this is correct. For my high schoolers who are spending a minimum of 45 minutes per subject daily times 180 days of school to equal 1 credit in that school year, that makes them able to complete a little more than 5 classes each day.
So, let’s say a typical high school student is taking:
That means, that a typical homeschooled high school student can complete a normal high school load in about 4 hours. Of course, many high schoolers (homeschooled or otherwise) do much more than this – they’re usually involved in volunteer activities, multiple electives, groups, and more! But this is just a bare minimum.
My sixth grader does school in about 2-3 hours per day, and this includes:
What does a typical day look like?
Check out our day-in-the-life-of posts to get a closer look:
So, to finally answer the question – how long does homeschool take? The answer is: much less time than you think!
But what’s your goal? To fill out a pile of worksheets? To check off a box? Or to inspire and encourage a love of learning in your children?
I think we would all agree that if, at the end of their schooling career, our children take with them a love of learning throughout their lives, they will be just fine.
Whether or not they filled out every last worksheet.
You might like these resources:
- 88 Things First Time Homeschool Mom Needs to Know
- How to Homeschool Summit
- New to Homeschooling? Get Your Questions Answered Here.