The Discerning Blog


Create Your One Year Homeschool Plan

Free! Download your own Homeschool Planning Pages


ou're on the Road to Success. You've explored your Purpose, and planned for obstacles. You've even chosen which curriculum you will want to include and what homeschool will look like for you. (if you haven't... you can read that blog here and get the free download)

Creating a Plan will take the stress off the day to day process of living a life of learning. Here is One way to create a yearly plan (there are so many ways to do this - this way worked for me) Download your free printable here:

Create Your Yearly Plan
Download PDF • 5.69MB

Consider Your Calendar

You can work on any schedule that works for your family! Isn't that freeing? Or terrifying? It really depends on your personality.

Here are some questions to ask yourself - be sure to consider the why part too:

  • should we follow the school calendar? why or why not?

  • should we school all year long?

  • how many days a week will we do academic work?

  • where will we fit in co ops or social times?

  • how many breaks will we have per year?

  • how many weeks per year will we do academic studies?

Here are a few alternate schedules to consider:

  • one subject per day

  • academics 3 days a week - child directed learning 1 day - social/experiments/field trips/co op 1 day

  • 4-6 weeks on academics then 1-2 weeks child directed learning

  • 1/2 days academics, 1/2 days life skills / volunteering

There are as many schedules as lifestyles. You will want to consider

  • your or your partner's work schedule

  • alternate teacher schedules

  • your own biorhythms (are you all morning people?)

  • the importance of structure for your family

  • does change bring excitement or stress?

  • are periods of personal academic exploration important to my plan?

What about prep time? How much planning time will you need? Are

you going to be able to do class prep every evening? (if so you are my new hero! I am just not that organized!) Will you need to set aside prep times to prepare for the next section? How much prep time does your plan require?

Prepare for the known and unknown obstacles.

  • Do I know of obstacles to scheduling? medical treatments, appointments, new baby

  • how will I deal with illness (mine or my child's)

  • What about family travel?

  • How much time time do I need to set aside to accommodate the unforseen obstacles?


For this section you will need a calendar - I prefer a 2 months per page printable calendar. This allows me to see more at once, and the real paper allows for erasing (unlike the shiny magazine page calendars)

  1. Mark birthdays, holidays, appointments, medical treatments and any other obstacles you know of.

  2. If the school calendar matters to you - find your local school calendar online and mark spring break, Christmas break, and other days off for your information. (remember, your child may have friends with those days off and be able to meet up with them)

You can see my personal calendar example on the free printable. Get the One Year Plan printable here

Create a Curricula Plan

After you know how many days a week you will do academics, and how many academic weeks you will have in your year you can divide your workload evenly over those terms/weeks/days.

It's easy to figure this out.

1 Write each curriculum and the number of lessons in the entire course. 2. Divide that number by the number of weeks you plan to do academic studies. This tells you how many lessons you have to accomplish in a week. If you are a more relaxed scheduler - you're probably done! You have a list of what needs to be accomplished for each subject each week and you'll fly by the seat of your pants and take each day as it comes.

3. It's always a good idea (even if you're more relaxed about schedules) to check to see how much work this means per day... is it reasonalbe to expect that much work? So... Take that last number (step 2) and divide it by the number of days per week you will do that subject. This gives you how many lessons you need to do daily. Now you can take on life and know if you are getting behind or not!

A Few Good Suggestions:

  • build catch up days into the plan - life happens

  • remember that you do not have 9 am to -3:30 p.m. 5 days a week to fill. No one works that effectively - especially not a child!

  • leave body breaks - movement breaks - an hour for the slow toileter (if that's a word) yes - consider the real world in your plan

  • add margin time - you cannot work every single minute. There are broken pencils, snacks, more washroom breaks, hard lessons that take more help (or hugs)

  • include lunch breaks, snack breaks

  • only expect 35-50 min of actual work per hour (the lower number for the youngest children)

  • if the curriculum says 15 min a day - count on 30 min!

My BEST - Most Valuable Tip:

LESS is More!

If your schedule looks full on your curricula plan you are probably using too much curricula! There is no reason to spend 5-6 hours a day doing academic work.

The younger the student the less table work is needed. Don't expect more than 45-60 min a day of worksheets from a gr 1 student! They learn through everything they do - not just the "courses". Puzzles, reading together, read alouds, crafts, and free play outdoors are more valuable than forcing them to sit and write words all day long.

By grades 11 or 12 if you have a very academic heavy course load and your student is taking online classes they may get close to 5 or 6 hours a day of what looks like "school" to those of us who went to traditional school.

Kudos to you! You have a plan!

Ready for the Planning Binder and how to manage day to day records?

No Fuss Planner Binder
Download PDF • 1.20MB

1 view0 comments

Recent Posts

See All