So once you have all your curriculum picked out and you are all excited about homeschooling, it is time to figure out how you are going to fit all that fun stuff in for homeschool plus run a household, cook meals and keep up on the laundry. This is no small feat!! This Homeschool checklist for your kids will help!
There is no one right perfect way to do this. Depending on your personality, house and family, you just have to figure out what will work for you. I read all kinds of housekeeping books and all kinds of homeschooling books. I took things from all different places and tried things, experimented until I found what seemed to work pretty well for us.
What Worked For Me
Basically, I made a list of all the household chores that had to be done daily and weekly, and all the school stuff that had to be done daily and weekly. Then I divided up the jobs according to age and ability and made assignments. Doing a 4 day school week, with one day for a field trip or shopping and cleaning or both worked really well for us. We would also take a week off here and there when we started to get burned out and needed a change of pace. In order to make sure we got the most important things done each day, I made a checklist chart for each child for each week that they kept in a folder. This kept us on track better and the kids were able to get to work on their own without me telling them each little thing they needed to do. I also made menu charts and kids would have kitchen jobs and days to help with food prep. Some weeks worked better than others, but at least we knew what we should do and we came much closer to accomplishing it all than we would have without all the charts and lists.
Some Reasons Why A Checklist Helped So Much
The kids did much better when they knew exactly what was expected of them. I would make and print a chart of the things they needed to do everyday and every week so that they would know and there would be no surprises. If I found they needed more to do, I would tell them that I would be adding more for them to do the following week. If it was too much, I would adjust it right then, figure out what was more appropriate, and let them be finished. I would also add subjects or homework from other classes onto the list. For example, a couple of my kids had to do extra spelling assignments and one of them had vision therapy homework that was added to his daily list. It is also nice to have some fun easy things listed so they can see that coloring, or a science project or a nature walk actually counted for something.
The kids would often try to finish and mark off their lists as quickly as possible, especially in the elementary levels (it was much harder to be done before lunch time in the upper levels). It was a sort of game, and I think that when they were finished, they felt quite free and accomplished. It gave them some structure and although we still had other lessons and activities besides what was on their lists, they always knew that those things needed to be done each week. We have used a list like this since my oldest was about 7 yrs. old. She is now 17, so that is a long time. It seemed to work well for all the personalities. Some weeks I was better at checking it than on other weeks, but at least we had the goal to complete it all, and we came close most weeks.
It is also very important to have some kind of prize or reward or acknowledgement for finishing– time to celebrate in other words. The reward for finishing before lunch was 15 extra minutes of screen time, and they earned 15 min. of screen time each day they did everything they needed to do. We generally would do math, workbooks, Greek or Latin, journal writing and Required Reading 4 times/ week. Piano practice and chores were done everyday. Writing a story and a report happened once a week, and history and science assignments were generally done twice a week. It feels great to get your chart all filled out!!
I would print off 5 charts at a time so they wouldn’t have to wait for me every Monday morning before they would start. We kept them in a folder along with any copywork or memory work they had. Here is a copy of a general list you can print off for free or use as a guide to make your own. I hope it helps you as it has helped us over the years. I would love to hear any feedback you may have!
The Checklist PDF -for Free:
My Weekly Chart — Book
Since my kids are in French school this year, I’ve had time to put these charts into a book. I can’t wait to use them, I know my kids will love them. You can use them now. I just got the one up– I am planning more colors and a preview should be up in a couple of days so you can see the inside. I hope it helps someone!!
Find it on amazon here: