How Long Does it Take to Homeschool Per Day?

We often receive questions on our 7Sisters FB group. One common question is: How long does it take to homeschool per day?

How Long Does it Take to Homeschool Per Day?

Introducing our 7Sisters’ Cousin: our beloved Stacey Lane Clendaniel. Most of you know her already from the 7SistersHomeschool Facebook group. Stacey is our “hold things together person”, and now, one of the Cousins who we have asked to join the team to share their homeschooling wisdom. She homeschooled her four kids, all of whom are graduated (so she

Stacey has heard this post’s question in the FB group from new folks who are transitioning to homeschooling from a traditional school setting.

Do you have a question about homeschooling that just drives you crazy on trying to answer? 

No, I am not going to talk about socialization. Hundreds of memes exist on this topic.

Most homeschool parents could compile a list of questions they have been asked about homeschooling that range from obscure to the most frequent. (That could be a fun survey to conduct.)

Ok, for me, the question that makes me slap my forehead is

“How long does it take to homeschool per day?”

Eventually, I do want to help homeschool parents answer this question but honestly, my first thought is a tad bit snarky. 

Like, if I could calculate the time a student would take to complete anything I would have written that book. Then sold thousands of copies to the top secret formula. Allowing me to retire early with the formula:

  • If a student spends this much time in each subject they will be a success. 

Of course, my follow up product would be “The Energy Level of a Toddler in Pill Form” for all adults everywhere! 

There are so many variables that have to be assessed when figuring out how much time each day should be spent on homeschooling: 

  • What curriculum a family uses
  • How many breaks are given during the day
  • Age/Grades of your kids
  • Are all subjects taught daily
  • Do you have a gifted or special needs student
  • Does your state have requirements
  • Attitudes of the kids on any given day
  • Ability to focus on any given day
  • What do you consider to be schooling
  • Is your family operating in an emergency circumstance
  • Do you homeschool year round
  • Also, do you homeschool 4 days a week
  • Do you only school in the morning 

Because you almost have to define how time spent in your homeschool looks so that it can be used for the comparison.

Please NOTE: if your family is experiencing an out-of-routine crisis time, like mom just had surgery, family member diagnosed with cancer or unemployment, do not expect to do the typical amount of school lessons. Give yourself the time needed for healing!

How Long Does it Take to Homeschool Per Day thoughts:

Yes, time is how we calculate our paychecks as adults, because most of us receive payment based on time spent. So it is logical to use time as an indicator for planning our homeschooling time schedule. So, I understand why this question shows up often. 

Let me just say I have seen four math problems take hours. On the other hand, I have seen a whole math page done in five minutes. That’s just math. We have not even touched how the other school subjects go!

Sometimes our school days have been done in two hours and others have taken until 8pm! (Might I add sometimes my teens even did school work on the weekends because they struggled completing what they needed to be done during the week.) 

Ok, putting my snarky thoughts aside to really try and sort though answering this question:

There is a general consensus that the older the student the longer the school day. Most homeschool moms operate on a theory of how long the homeschool day takes. 

Let’s ask some different questions about How long does it take to homeschool per day.

Are you asking this question out of fear of not doing enough?

It can be hard to not compare your homeschool to Pinterest Perfect Homeschool Mom on Facebook. (All of us homeschool in imperfect circumstances.) But this is your homeschool and you decide what is best for your family. 

Maybe it’s not time but actually:

  • How long are the lessons (so you can evaluate if the curriculum requires more than your student needs)?
    • How can you word your questions to reflect that? 

Is there another way beside time on defining how long homeschool takes?

Maybe school is done when your assignments are done. Maybe you complete whatever you can in three hours and the next day pick up where you left off. Because we have to be real and have realistic expectations, we can learn:

  • not fit everything in
  • nor cover everything in our homeschool
  • There will be gaps!

How flexible in the curriculum?

  • Can I easily tweak the assignments based on the needs of my family? 

Do I want to calculate my homeschool day based on time, similar to hours worked as an adult?

  • You can shape your schedule as one hour spent daily on math to include assignments, math games and drill sheets. You can create your homeschool schedule that way. Just like you can say one math lesson completed each day accounts for enough time.

Undoubtedly, I know all the options can be overwhelming when you are trying to decide if your kids are getting the best education.

Scheduling Backwards
Click image for full description.

In my opinion, you manage your time based on:

  • your homeschool goals
  • the ability of your students
  • and the special constraints of your family.

Therefore, something like Scheduling Backwards, looking at the most important things first can help you get started. Also, you can download a freebie SMART goals worksheet for you and your teens.

If you need more help figuring out your homeschool schedule, I recommend a 7Sisters Coaching Session.

How long does it take to homeschool per day at my house varies daily?

Well that is only a theory and changes based on the needs of the family. 

Lastly, having graduated 4 out of my 5 students, my only thing I would have changed was my grumbling attitude. Although I got really overwhelmed for a few years with all the details, I wish I would have slowed down enough to enjoy them all being home. 

You know how that would have looked? Less time on the homeschool lessons and more time as family. 

Sometimes you have to remind yourself of the big picture.

BTW- Have you met the rest of the 7Sisters’ Cousins? They have so much wisdom to offer. They also have special products and services. Check them out on the Stuff We Like page.

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Vicki Tillman

Blogger, curriculum developer at 7SistersHomeschool.com, counselor, life and career coach, SYMBIS guide, speaker, prayer person. 20+year veteran homeschool mom.

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