Today, I am sharing our typical extended spring break schedule with you and sharing some of our favorite resources that are helping our family through this new normal!
Simple Extended Spring Break Schedule
Who would have guessed we would all be homeschooling our kids this spring? It is has been an overwhelming and stressful few weeks. But, there are always silver linings to every situation. While yes, my family is going absolutely stir crazy and we really miss our friends, I have to say, the family time has been good for us too! Hopefully your family has been able to find some bits of joy and peace in this situation.
Today, I wanted to share our simple schedule with you and hopefully provide some encouragement for finding a family schedule that can work for you! I’ve got a lot of printable resources in the Free Printables Library, so be sure to sign up and get access to the entire collection. Everyone’s home school schedule is different and it is important to recognize that what works for some families might not work for yours.
Our daily routine actually starts the night before each day when I create the schedule for the next day. This habit has really been so helpful for me! First, it allows me to have time to think through our day (instead of throwing something together in the morning). Plus, I feel a little less anxious waking up in he morning by knowing what lies ahead for the day.
Kids and families thrive on routines. When kids know what to expect, they have less anxiety about the future. There are a lot of unknowns right now, but we can make our day-to-day routine stable and constant.
Here is a look at our current schedule. I customize the schedule based on what is going on, what kind of school work the kids have and what work I need to get done and what chores around the house are necessary.
I stick the schedule up on the refrigerator and the kids really do refer to the schedule all day long. It is a loose schedule and we are certainly not sticking to it by the minute. But it gives us direction and purpose for the day. I print out a copy for each day of the week and I add specific notes to the agenda including our daily chores and any specific activities we are going to do.
There are so many school day schedules out there that it can be actually overwhelming to decide how you should structure your school days. What might work for one family would not work well for another! So be sure that the schedule you create is personalized to your family’s needs! If you are family with two working parents, you are not going to have the same schedule as a family that might have both parents at home right now. Older kids might require less structure than little ones. Take into account all of these things to come up with a homeschool schedule that works for you!
Staring the Day with Gratitude and Exercise
Do you find yourself waking up in panic mode? I have to admit that anxiety has been setting in the moment I wake up. It creeps in the moment I wake up and comes in waves throughout the day.
One little thing that finds me peace is to start with gratitude. I’ve been writing in this gratitude journal for over a year and it has been a great way to start the day. The kids also write in their journals when I remind them to do so. I’d like to get better about that!
Then, we have been doing a family exercise routine. Just a little 15 minutes of getting the heart pumping. It is part comic relief and part actual fitness but this routine has really connected our family. This is our current work out routine from Shaping Up to Be Mom. We will find a new workout in a few weeks to mix things up.
I am very grateful that the kids have e-learning right now. Honestly, I do not know how we would fill our day otherwise! My two older kids have 2 1/2 -3 hours of school a day. They certainly take breaks and are not working solidly for that time, but we try to work up until lunchtime. Every family is different and I know some kids are doing their schoolwork in the afternoon. So you decide what works best for your kids!
We take a little mini study break in the morning. The kids have a snack and they get outside for 15 minutes while I catch my breath and check a few e-mails.
Family chores had certainly fallen by the way side these last few months. With our evenings previously so busy, we weren’t enforcing everyone’s chores.
So what better time than now, to get everyone on board with pitching in around the house. We have actually not had any complaints about helping out! The things we are willing to do when we are bored!
Here is our chore schedule for the week. Again, it really helps to have a routine. I don’t have to come up with new chores each day and the expectations are clear for everyone.
Our afternoons are pretty open and everyone likes a little space to relax. I know some parents are doing a lot of enrichment activities with their kids in addition to e-learning and that is absolutely amazing! We are finding that everyone just wants to do their own thing in the afternoon. And I am able to do some blogging and other things around the house.
Sometimes the kids use the free time to play video games and other times they are more active. We are not stressing about screen time as long as they are doing other activities each day.
We have found some great online resources that are fun and educational:
Do your kids love Mo Williams Pigeon books? Mo Williams is making these sweet drawing tutorials on Youtube right now. My boys absolutely love them and they are so excited about learning to draw some of the Mo Williams characters.
One of our favorites for yoga or movement activities.
When you need a daily dose of cuteness, check out these zoo webcams. We like to check these live videos when we need a little break from school work.
My daughter is taking a one week photography camp through OutSchool and we are so impressed! Right now, Outschool is offering a $100 credit to use towards any class! The photography class was $95, so when the credit was applied, the class was free! We had to pay a $1 enrollment class.
The classes are taught online and there are actually class meeting times. The students watch the lectures on Zoom and are able to interact with the teacher and students. There are a ton of fun class offerings! It is definitely worth checking out!
Additionally, for a $20 credit, you can use my affiliate link.
My boys love to do coding and they are missing their Code Ninjas classes right now. Code.Org is a great way to practice programming skills.
Crafting has been another afternoon activity. I stocked up on art supplies a few weeks ago but you can get a lot of crafts on Amazon. I’ve linked up all of our favorite crafts on my Amazon store.
At the end of our days, everyone is a little tired (or maybe it’s just mom that’s tired). Either way, we are sometimes scratching our head wondering what to do with our evenings. I feel like I give it my all during the day that I am ready to crash at the end of the day.
But, we have been doing a mix of family movie nights, playing board games and working on puzzles. Incidentally, puzzles seem to be selling out on Amazon!
Also, here is a List of 50 Family Activities to do at Home.
Parenting Through This Crisis
At the end of the day, we have to remember that these are extraordinary circumstances and we need to extend grace to ourselves and our family. Mentally this is a lot to manage for parents. The stress of it all within our homes and in the country and world is so much to process! There is no owner’s manual for how to parent through a crisis like this. Focusing on the few things we can control (like our own schedule) versus the things we can not control will allow us to have a more positive outlook.
There are many unknowns with all of this, but we can continue to put one foot in front of the other. Soon enough, we will see the light at the end of the tunnel.
How are you surviving through all of this?
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