Wednesday, May 6, 2015

A Day in the Life of a Homeschooler

I'm sorry I didn't post my regular Teaser Tuesday or Top Ten Tuesday posts yesterday! I had my first AP exam of the year on Monday (Environmental Science - fingers crossed until I get my score in July!), and my brain was such mush that I couldn't string more than a few words together at a time. If I'd posted anything, it would have been rubbish. As an apology for breaking routine, I decided to break routine further and post on a Wednesday with something that's been in draft form for almost a month now. I hope you like it!

You may or may not know this, but I'm homeschooled. That's right, I do school at home. On the couch. In my pajamas. Most people have a hard time grasping how this could possibly count as work, and I guess I can't blame them if all they see of homeschooling comes from popular culture and the Duggars.

I thought I'd post a rough sketch of my daily routine, including a to-do list from a month ago, so you can see what a homeschool life is really like.

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8:30 - Wake up
Yes, I wake up at 8:30. I know, I'm jealous of me too.

8:30-9:00 - Eat breakfast
Sometimes I work on reviewing some vocab while I eat. I use Memrise for vocab review, partly because they have an app I can use around the house.

9:00-12:00 - School
See list below

12:00-1:30 - Break
I'm crocheting a car-seat afghan for my cousin's unborn baby! It's my first real crocheting project, and is extremely addicting. I only wish I could crochet and type at the same time - that would really help me get things done faster!

1:30-6:30ish - More school
See list below for the specifics. I'm a bit iffy on when exactly I finish my school day - for example, on the day I'm writing this I didn't finish until 7:15. It varies a lot from day to day, depending on what I have to do.

6:30-9:30 - Relax/Eat Supper
This is when I get the bulk of my free time. I do my chores, read a book, and (of course!) work on my blog. But then sometimes I'm tired, so I just watch TV instead.

9:30 - 10:00 - Get ready for bed, talk to parents, wind down

10:00-10:30 - Read and/or blog in bed
I often work on my blog right before bed, because I can do that on my iPad. My sister won't let me leave my bedside light on because it keeps her up, so I can't really read a book in bed.

10:30 (ish) - Lights out

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My school work isn't really parceled into specific time slots like it used to be, and every day is different. Here's my to-do from last Tuesday. I was prepping for my macroeconomics final and an environmental science unit test, and beginning my capstone speech project in English:

AP Macroeconomics (online):
~Read through Chapter 12 of my 5 Steps to a 5 review book for AP Macroeconomics
~Put the end-of-chapter vocabulary into Memrise

AP Environmental Science (online):
~Read back through the chapter in the textbook
~Water (i.e. review) my vocab on Memrise
~Take the lesson quiz, which covers all of the material on the upcoming test

AP English (online):
~Write at least one double-spaced page

Spanish (tutor):
~Spend at least 20 minutes working with the textbook and online component

SAT (online/study book):
~Take a Critical Reading practice quiz

Pre-Calculus:
~45 minutes of math (I was doing combinations, permutations, probabilities, and odds)

Art:
Finish painting my paper mache fish

Bible:
~About 20 minutes of reading. I'm planning to get through it in two years, and am really behind right now.

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When I was writing this post I was wiped out from an exhausting week of finishing the English project, taking my Macroeconomics final, and studying for my science test. I went for a quick walk with my sister to clear my head before taking the second half of the test, and we stopped to talk briefly with a man who lives in our neighborhood. He asked us why we weren't in school, and I explained that we were homeschooled. He laughed as though we were sharing an inside joke and chortled "I can tell you're working really hard today!" I gritted my teeth and smiled along with him, and just kept walking.

Five minutes later I ran into him again, this time in front of my house along with two of my siblings (both of whom insisted that I go around the block again). There was a couple and their little girl who stopped to chat with the man, and he introduced us to them with the explanation that we were homeschooled and obviously (chuckle) working really hard.

Yeah. I took a fifteen minute break from studying for my AP science test, and the minute I stepped foot outside my front door I got slack for being a slacker. It annoyed me just a little.

But I'm not afraid to laugh at myself. Most homeschoolers have a pretty good sense of humor. The comedian Tim Hawkins is a homeschool father, and he made a hilarious parody of the Addams Family theme song called "The Homeschool Family." It plays on all the common homeschool tropes (some of which are actually true!) and I have yet to meet a homeschool parent or student who didn't find it hilarious. Here it is if you want to watch it:



Do you have any burning questions about homeschooling? Put them in the comments section, and I'll be sure to answer all of them. Also, let me know if you want me to expand this into a series of posts. I was thinking I might do that, but I only will if you guys are interested in reading it.

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