Block scheduling is a different approach to planning your homeschool year. A lot of public schools use this scheduling option, especially in high school. If you aren’t familiar with it, or have never heard of it, it may sound strange at first. The way it works is, you divide your school year into 4 equal parts (semesters). You decided how many semesters or blocks you’d like to work on a particular subject. For example, take ancient history, maybe you need to finish ancient history halfway through the school year so that you can squeeze in middle ages history and get them both finished the same year. Or you may have a class that you only need one semester to finish.
Block scheduling allows you to be able to do this. The reason it works is that you are increasing the amount of time you have available for class time each day because you have fewer subjects to teach each day. So instead of having all 7 or 8 subjects every day at 1 hour each, you do 4 subjects for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours each. As homeschoolers, we know that it doesn’t take us that long each day, (well depending on the day and the child), but you get the picture. In other words, you can move more quickly because you have more time with fewer subjects.
This can be great if you need to fit in a lot in a year, you’ve fallen behind and need to make up some work, want to work in some extra classes or you have a child that needs more time per day on their subjects. It can be a great option if you can stay motivated to move at a good pace. It sounds like a lot of extra work for the student, but my kids really like it in high school.
Here is the block schedule that we’re doing this year. Due to our life this past year, we have a couple of subjects that we need to finish from last year. I’ve put them in the first block (Geography, Biology, and Civics). Each block is 9 weeks long. Doing it this way, allowed Emily to fit in an art lesson when she finished typing; since typing only takes about 20-30 minutes. We’re also doing piano for the girls, which is not shown because we’ll be working on it daily when we get a chance to. I haven’t set a specific time for it yet.
Basically, I’m taking year-long classes and squashing them into 1/2 year. We’ll be covering 2 lessons a day. For example, Algebra: Lesson 1 and 2 but just doing the odd problems. Emily is only in middle school so her schedule is a modified block. I’m not making her do a block math schedule and the same with Spencer in regards to his math. So don’t feel that you have to do every single subject as a block. You can still take certain subjects and stretch them out all year.
We’re still new at block scheduling, but as of today, we’ll be done by 1:30 pm. I haven’t made a specific timed schedule to follow as of yet because I’m waiting to see how long each class will take in reality. Supposedly each class should be allowed 90 minutes, but with homeschooling, it may not take that long, even though you’re doing two lessons.
I hope this makes sense! We needed a way to get a lot done without spending our entire day doing school. Due to sports, we have to be done by 2 pm every day for practices and games. So, hopefully, this will do the trick!
Have you used block scheduling? Did you like it? How did it work for you? Leave me note, I’d love to hear from you and it could really help some other homeschoolers!