Homeschool Advantages: Freedom of Time

It isn't the reason I decided to homeschool, but I love to be master of my own time. I still get the same 24 hours as everyone else, but by homeschooling, I can rearrange our time as our life demands. For homeschoolers, the daily tempo is set by each member of the family rather than the rigid schedule put forth by the teacher. Here, if the three year old is feeling out of sorts, we adjust to meet her needs. She may only need a lap and a story but that may require us all to shift things a bit. Projects may be placed on hold while I tend to an unexpected crisis. The key to making this work is to rearrange the things I need to get done and not to put them off indefinitely.

A day of homeschool is four hours of learning. Because of the range of materials we use, learning is rarely for only four hours of our day, but that is what the law requires. Some days we are done with our mandatory four hours by noon. Once, my son woke at 4:30 am when my husband had to leave for a trip. He was wide awake so we decided to get school out of the way. We were done by 8:30am! He was done with school before his schooled friend had gotten their morning announcements!

Of course, sleeping in is nice too. My ten year old loves to rise about 9:00am. She is not a morning person, but can get a lot accomplished in the afternoon. I remember the struggles of dragging her out of bed each morning. I am so thankful for the countless arguments we have avoided by just letting her work at a different time.

Personally, I think it is ridiculous to try to time how long my children are learning. Do I count the time spent on the road trips listening to books on disc? How about the time my daughter spent sketching the wild ducks that wandered into our yard? Do I log in the ten minutes I spent explaining the vacuum of space last night? Four hours of learning per day is easy. It would be harder to only learn for four hours a day.

Getting in the learning isn't the struggle. The struggle is letting in too much life! I still tend to over schedule, and I get worn out from doing too much. But my hectic schedule is of my own doing and I can undo it too, if that is what we decide is needed. So, does a flexible schedule appeal to you, or is it the planned and plotted course that feels more your style?

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