A productive summer schedule can help homeschoolers (or anyone) toward desires or goals you have for your summer months. Perhaps those would include doing some homeschooling, accomplishing activities that don’t fit into a homeschool year, or simply relationship building. Whatever the desire, purposefulness in making a schedule should give time to work on various aspects that lead to its achievement. Often moms get to the end of their summer dismayed with their lack of productivity and disappointed that they didn’t accomplish what they had envisioned. Your schedule is a tool that will let you look back on summer with satisfaction rather than regret.
If you haven’t scheduled before, summer is a perfect time to learn scheduling because usually summer has a more relaxed pace than the school months do.
List and Pray
To begin, write your desires for summer accomplishments onto a list. Having these desires in writing means you can visualize the ideas all together. You have a limited amount of time and energy so what you want to accomplish will be mitigated by that. The list and then the schedule is a reality check for what is reasonable to try to do.
Before you work on the actual schedule, you want to pray and seek the Lord’s direction for what He would have you and your children accomplish this summer. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” (James 1:5). You may grow or shrink the list as you spend praying over it and also evaluating your available time.
Then pray about the actual planning and working out of the schedule since you want God’s help through that process. He is the One Who gives you direction and creativity for how to put the pieces of your schedule together.
Add a Few Notes
Now look at your list of desires for the summer. What needs to be scheduled to accomplish those goals? Start by making notes on your list since a particular goal might mean multiple spots on the schedule.
For example, your list says: summer school. But your note would be more specific – keep math and reading going during the summer by doing it daily. Your list could have: relationship building. Your note with it might say: weekly outing with one child rotating every week through the summer, assign a kitchen helper for each meal, have a daily game time.
The next step is to put times with what you have on your list. It simplifies the schedule and schedule production if you use the same schedule for summer that you do for the school year when it comes to your normal daily needs. Then you don’t have to relearn that routine for the summer. School time is freed up to assign for your summer accomplishments, but the rest of the schedule remains the same.
If, however, you want to change the whole thing up, your schedule can accommodate! Just be sure to write it down. Trying to keep it in your mind is a setup for failure!
Then you use your notes to help you put what is on your list into time slots on the schedule. What is on it that you will do every day? Plug those into your schedule first. That allows you to evaluate the time blocks you have available for activities that don’t happen every day. If you want to have larger chunks of time for outings, try to group your daily activities together, so that you have several hours that can be scheduled for outings and the activities that don’t happen every day.
Finally what is on the list that you can do a couple of times a week or once a week? Put those into the blocks that are still open after the daily pieces have been entered into the schedule.
Make the Summer Schedule a Reality
Sometimes putting together a schedule seems daunting. That’s usually the case when it is all floating around in your head. Committing the details to paper or the computer, generally flows nicely once you take that first step to begin.
The productive summer schedule for homeschoolers will help you end your summer with a smile as you look back over all that you achieved through those months.
If you need more scheduling help, I recommend our book called Managers of Their Homes. That book is full of scheduling information plus it walks you step by step through putting a schedule together utilizing the included scheduling kit.
Here are some other articles on summer scheduling.