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Does homeschooling allow you to finish school time earlier? When somebody asks me how long do children learn in a day, I am confused about the answer. Well, homeschooling is very flexible in learning. Kids learn all day long in various different ways, from morning till they go to sleep. It also depends on the way people consider what learning is.
For us, we divide learning into 2, the formal or academic school learning and the interest based learning. Too long school or academic learning will take away the chance for children to learn their interest. It is a problem recently for us.
Well, we have tried several ways since it was in the beginning of our homeschooling journey. Once something works and after several times, it doesn't work. It adjusts our life. You might have tried several things and I would be happy if you want to share with us as well
Why Should We Avoid Extended Homeschooling Hours?
What I mean by homeschooling hours here is the time homeschooling moms teach children directly or the time children learn structured academic lessons. I know that not all homeschooling families have structured learning, but many of them have the class-time or “academic learning time”. Here are some reasons for you to cut the ineffective time.
Reduce the stress for both moms and children
Longer and not effective “homeschooling time” can be very frustrating for both moms and children. You should be able to imagine that situation. Therefore, the habits of daily longer and ineffective time should be solved very soon. Otherwise, you will get burnt out more easily.
Give a chance to explore children's interest and talents
The shorter and more effective time you have in daily homeschooling will make children have more time to explore their interest and talents. They can spend more time on extra activities, which are more useful than staying on the basic things. For us, this is one goal to homeschool children. This is the main benefit of homeschooling.
Longer time spending in schooling will not make children gain more things in academic, except if they really go deeper into it by purpose. There is some condition when children have to take longer schooling time, like taking the exams. However, the normal daily lessons will be more effective if it is shorter. More children are more capable of concentrating in a shorter time.
How to Finish School Time Earlier
These steps might sound classical, but you need to read them to see the relationship and reasons behind them. Therefore, you can find alternatives to suit your family style.
Set a Time Table or Daily Target
Is the time table only for students in the public school? It looks very rigid and not flexible at all. However, everyone needs habits. Children have to know what they do as routines. Thus, when they grow up later, they will have less problem in works and higher education.
A time table doesn't have to be very crowded. It needs to be realistic and it is better if you make it together start from certain age or grade level. It is also a form of education in growing responsibility. Try to avoid some mistakes in planning lesson
For visual and younger children, you can set colorful pictures to stimulate them doing the schedule.
Get Access to The Yearly Plan
Kids need to know the big picture on what they need to accomplish in a certain longer period of time. They will be proud when they can catch up things in shorter time. On the other hand, they need to know that they need to work harder to accomplish their target. Younger children won't understand written target. You can make it simple numbers and colors that track their work.
Yearly plan doesn't have to be text book based learning, but it can be in the form of goals made up by both children and you. By getting access to the yearly plan, children will know their position, whether they take too slow, enough, or fast speed in working.
Set The Time Limit of The Day
After children know what to do and the target, it is the time to give smaller chunks of work in a limited amount of time. Kids need to know when and how long they have to finish. For the basic academic things included in the yearly plan, it is compulsory for children to finish in certain amount of time. I set 1:00 PM as the limit for compulsory lesson. If they want to finish
Discuss The Early After School Activity
Having long time lessons is sometimes a habit that both parents and children are aware or not. Even, they might be desperate to get the time more effectively used. Children need to know the benefits to having more effective time in homeschooling. You need discuss together some possibilities children can have when they use the time more effectively.
Discuss The Rule of The Game
Settle some challenge for children to meet the goal to make the homeschooling time more effectively. You can give a reward at the first time until it becomes a habit. Well, I don't usually like giving rewards or incentives to children. However, it can be really motivating at first. One reward that we had was giving game time for 30 minutes after they finish their learning targets and reading for an hour. The game is usually for the weekend.
I really know that it is very difficult to cut the ineffective time in homeschooling. I also feel that it is something impossible most of the time when I consider my children's habits. However, it is something that everyone needs to try. It is better to give more lessons with a shorter time, rather than a few with longer time. I believe that everyone can do it, but we just need more consistency and efforts.
Good luck to everyone.
Adelien Tan is a mother of three awesome boys and a wife of a great husband. They are a home education family who live in Surabaya, Indonesia, where home education is still very rare. English is her foreign language, but She tries to use it in blogging.