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time to concentrate during the day!!!!!!

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OK all you experienced Homeschool parents, I need some tips!  I have a rising 4th grader and 2nd grader.  We are schooling year round.  At this point in my life, I'm in need of about 1.5 hours to myself every day or every other day in order to attend to some complicated extended family matters. During the school year, my kids attended after-school programs at the YMCA and this was my time to work.  Now that its summer, I'm falling way behind and I'm really stressed. What do you do in order to get some uninterrupted time to concentrate each day?  or even each week?  Do you work in the mornings/evenings? have a quiet time every day? mother's helper? swapping with other families? I need ideas before I lose it!

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It gets better. My kids just finished fourth and second grades, and I don't have trouble telling them to fend for themselves for a while so I can get stuff done. I have a "hideout" I can go to away from the main kid zones, and they know when I'm there they should avoid interrupting me unless it is urgent.



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Here it is the 60-90 minutes after lunch. I use the baby as our guide so when her nap rolls around, so does rest time for everyone else. My two boys (11 & 4) head off to their rooms and listen to audiobooks and play. The baby sleeps. I do whatever I need to do. With the ages of your kids I'd suggest something like this. It might take a week or so for them to get in a groover, but eventually I bet they come to enjoy that time.

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Quiet time is every day at our house from about 2 to 3:30. DS has to stay in his room (except to use the bathroom) and stay quiet (except if it's urgent--e.g., one time he got a nosebleed and realized he needed to call for my help).


He has a bookcase with books, some toys (when we first started quiet time, I rotated them at least weekly), and some Jim Weiss audiobooks. Now that we've been doing it for a long time, he looks forward to quiet time, because he can do whatever he wants. He was just four when we started, though, and I did employ some bribery at the time.


We bought a clock that changes color when it's time to come out, but with kids who are old enough to tell time, you can just make sure they know what time they'll be done.

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I have to break it up.  I get up at 5 to do my "me" time: coffee, news, yoga.  Early afternoon is rest time and I use that to organize and plan ahead.  No children are allowed in the living room after 8pm, so that's the time dh and I use to work on family issues, have date time, etc.  Once a week I go out alone.

Now that it's summer I'm not above stealing moments while my 5yo is engaged in story time at the library or at the park. :)  He doesn't need me to hover.

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I have to wake up REALLY early.   But that is because I have a one year old.


If I only had kids your ages, I would just explain to them that I needed some time and why it was REALLY important that I get that time.  Make sure they understan the family situation and why you need this time.  Then I would expect to get the time.   I wouldn't ask permission.   It is as simple as that.


I would give them some independent work to do while I was working.  

Explain what they should do if they have questions.  (In our house, they are instructed to skip that thing and move on the next.)  

Explain what they can do when they complete their list.

Explain things that they CAN interrupt you for (emergency), explain things they cannot interrupt you for (ex. fighting with their sibling.)

And if you need to, Explain what the consequence will be if they don't follow these simple instructions. 


Some ideas for things you can assign them to do while you work:

1)  Practice math facts on the computer

2)  Study their spelling words

3)  Go outside and sketch something in their nature notebooks,

4)  Copywork or transcription

5)  A typing lesson on the computer

6)  Silent reading

7)  Listen to an audiobook for 20 minutes

8)  Any Evan Moor or Critical Thinking company workbook that works on somethng they need extra practice with

9)  Cursive writing practice page

10)   Clean a bathroom or other chore


SWB has a you tube video where she used to give her kids a mandatory quiet time every afternoon.   So that might work too.   I just find that giving them a list of things to keep them busy usualy means they are more productive with their time and less likely to get into trouble.  :) 


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