The Ebb & Flow of Homeschooling

It’s the last day of summer, and the skies are overcast here. Even though we’re excited for the fall, we’re not looking forward to the gloom or the return of the dreaded east winds or the indecisive Southern California weather.⠀

Our homeschooling ebbs and flows along with the seasons. We’ll go strong for another couple of months until the holidays come around and our more formal learning is put on the back burner. After the new year, we’ll get back into it with revived vigor, but then comes mid-February when we start to lose steam once more. Then spring pops up and our excitement for schooling and learning returns. However, this may last only a couple of months if we’re lucky.⠀

And then soon we are yearning for the long, warm days of summer. For camping and fishing by the lake, for roadtrips and treats we only eat during the long car rides, and for endless beach days and ice cold drinks.⠀

When I taught history at a public school, I noticed that both my students and myself would tire out after 4-6 weeks studying a unit. Sure schools get breaks, but they don’t often coincide with our natural yearning for them. Who doesn’t remember counting down the days until vacation?⠀

This is why I like to factor in natural breaks into our homeschool year. I know that about every 4-8 weeks we’ll take some time off, but when exactly I do not know. Instead I try to read my kids’ moods and attention spans as well as my own motivation, and from there I can gage when we should put our learning to the side. ⠀

Already I can sense that we’ll need a rest period within the next couple of weeks.⠀

How often do you take breaks in your homeschool year?⠀