Thursday, January 26, 2017

A Homeschool Day with Teens

Our days have really changed over the last few years. The kids spend so much more time attending activities out of our home. I imagine this will only increase over the next few years. Sometimes it is a difficult balance to still get in what I feel is enough core lessons. However, we make it work. Since my children are faced with a host of special needs and challenges, they do not do their schooling as independently as many their age. Nonetheless, they are growing and stretching all of the time. These are my last two students. After 18+ years of homeschooling, most of the time I feel confident that I am crafting their days to prepare them for a successful adulthood.

There are very few days a month when we stay home for the whole day. Most days are filled with a few precious hours of schooling at home and then off into the world we go. Here is my snapshot of our day in the life with a 13 and 14 year old.

Morning ~ My husband and our disabled adult son are both home sick today. I felt a stomach virus/cold coming on earlier in the week, but fought it off. Now it has struck them. They do not seem to be fighting it off as quickly as I did. I spray the house down with Thieves oil and then start the diffuser going with a cocktail of essential oils called Germ Buster. Breakfast this morning consists of blueberry smoothies and toast or cereal and oranges. Everyone collects what they want and gets ready for the day.

Everyone does their morning chore. This school year, Dean rotates the dishwasher and wipes off counters while Anne gets all of the dirty laundry sorted and rotates the washer and dryer. I do different things each morning. This morning I make Cinnamon Butternut Squash and start it in the Crock-pot.

By 9:20 am we are on our way to a performance downtown. We meet up with friends and see the school matinee of Shadowland by Pilobolus. It is an amazing show. After the show, we eat lunch at a little sandwich shop and take our homeschool friend (S) home for English class. We homeschool with her two times a week.

Afternoon ~ We return home and get right to work on our English class. The kids are working their way through Cover Story. They complete lesson 11 over the next hour or so. Since it is 2:00 pm (our normal time to end school), I allow the kids to have free time. S, Anne, and Dean scurry off to draw, play guitar, get ready for dance and generally shriek and laugh. I busy myself preparing chicken and baked potatoes for my husband to put in the roaster oven at a later time. This will be a warm dinner with the added butternut squash that is in the Crock-pot.

Once everyone is assembled, we leave to pick up one more friend from the local high school and I drop off all four kids at dance. I decide to walk despite the biting wind. I manage 5,000 steps and retreat to the car to fill in today's lessons in my lesson planner and make a few phone calls.

The kids get out of dance after two hours and we head home to a warm dinner.

Night ~ Everyone is tired and has a two hour free time after dinner. After our break, we come back together to do chores, watch CNN Student News and listen to a chapter from The Twenty-One Balloons. We wrap the evening up with showers and a third dinner for Dean (ahem). Sweet dreams!

Blessings, Dawn


  1. I love getting a peek at your day!

  2. I am amazed at how similar our days sound to yours!

  3. I'm at the opposite end of the spectrum from you--my oldest are still at home, but we still file all the way down to toddlers. My teens have to consider the little's schedules/needs before they can have their outings. The description of your day makes me wonder just what my babies' days will look like in another decade or so. :)

  4. I hope everyone feels better now. I've noticed too, that the older the kids get, the busier the schedule gets.

  5. We are trying our best to lighten our schedule because it feels too hectic being gone somewhere most days. But I'm not as good as you at preparing a dinner ahead of time. If we aren't home for me to start dinner when it needs to be put in, then we end up at a restaurant. But since two of us are not able to eat much, it's not as expensive as taking a Dean out all the time :-)

  6. You are a busy mama! Hope everyone is feeling better now. Butternut squash- yum!