How Long Should My Homeschooling Day Be? A Guide to Every Level

One common question that homeschooling parents often grapple with is how long a day of homeschooling should be. The answer to this question varies based on the grade level of the child, however, just know that there is no exact, set answer to how long a day of homeschooling should be. It’s YOUR school and YOU are the dean, headmaster, principal, and teacher. You make the rules and no one knows your child better than you, so you have the amazing privilege of tailoring the homeschool day to the educational goals you have set for your school and the needs of each individual child.

If you would like a basic guide, however, (which is up to you whether you follow it or not) below we explore different options for the duration of a homeschooling day for preschool, kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, and high school grades.

If you’re looking for curriculum options make sure to check out our full list of free online curriculums for every grade level!

Preschool and Kindergarten

Preschool and kindergarten are all about building a strong foundation for learning. Young children have shorter attention spans, so a shorter homeschooling day is typically more effective. Aim for 1 to 2 hours of structured learning time per day. Keep lessons engaging and interactive, incorporating plenty of play and exploration. Remember that learning at this age is also happening naturally through everyday activities, so don’t forget to count those experiences as part of their education.

Make sure to check out our full list of Pre-k/Kindergarten school supplies idea list!

Elementary School

For elementary school-aged children (grades 1-5), a typical homeschooling day can vary between 1 to 4 hours, and more of course as they go up in grade. This time should include core subjects like math, reading, and writing, as well as science, social studies, and physical education. Break the day into shorter segments with frequent breaks to keep them focused and engaged. Make use of hands-on activities and field trips to make learning enjoyable. And because we’re homeschooling kids don’t have to be at a desk all day, so give yourself plenty of room to run and play throughout the day – they need it!

Make sure to check out our full list of Elementary School school supplies idea list!

Middle School

Middle school students (grades 6-8) can handle a bit more structured learning. A daily homeschooling schedule for this age group may range from 4 to 5 hours. Include subjects such as math, science, language arts, social studies, and electives. As children grow, they may need more time for independent work and projects. Encourage them to take ownership of their learning and manage their time effectively. Even at this age you want to make sure to give them plenty of breaks and time for physical activity out side of their regular P.E./extracurricular activities. Remember that we were not made to sit at desks all day!

Make sure to check out our full list of Middle School school supplies idea list!

High School

High schoolers (grades 9-12) can follow a more traditional school schedule, with approximately 4 to 6 hours of homeschooling per day. This allows time for in-depth exploration of subjects, research, and preparation for college or career goals. High school students may also engage in extracurricular activities, part-time jobs, or internships, so flexibility in scheduling is key to accommodate their individual needs. A four-day school week can be particularly helpful to giving high school students the flexibility and extra time they need to explore their post high-school and career interests.

Make sure to check out our full list of High School school supplies idea list!

Additional Tips for Managing Homeschooling Hours:

  1. Adapt to Your Child’s Needs: Every child is unique, so be flexible and adjust the homeschooling schedule as needed. Some children may complete their work more quickly, while others may require more time.
  2. Quality over Quantity: Focus on the quality of learning rather than the number of hours spent. Ensure your child comprehends and retains the material before moving on.
  3. Incorporate Breaks: Frequent short breaks help maintain concentration. Encourage physical activity and outdoor time during breaks to refresh the mind.
  4. Use Technology Wisely: Utilize online resources, educational apps, and digital tools to enhance learning and make lessons more engaging.
  5. Set Goals: Create daily, weekly, and monthly goals to track progress and stay organized.

The ideal duration of a homeschooling day varies according to the grade level of your child. Understanding your child’s developmental stage and adapting to their individual needs is key to a successful homeschooling experience. Remember that the quality of learning matters more than the quantity of hours spent, and providing a well-rounded education that includes play, exploration, and real-life experiences is crucial for every grade level. Ultimately, homeschooling allows you the flexibility to tailor your child’s education to their unique needs and interests, so embrace the freedom it offers while keeping their educational goals in mind.

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Simple & Fun Fall Activity – Autumn Tree Painting with Cotton Balls!

Autumn is a magical time of the year when nature puts on a breathtaking display of vibrant colors. As homeschoolers, we have the unique opportunity to explore and celebrate the beauty of this season in creative ways. We can even spend the whole day on art if we’d like, and there’s no better time of year than the fall to explore artistic fun with your kids.

I found this simple and fun activity that captures the essence of fall from Projects with Kids: painting autumn trees with cotton balls! This artistic activity not only promotes creativity but also provides a great opportunity to teach kids about the changing seasons and the wonders of God’s creation.

Here are all of the materials you’ll need to get started, most of which you’ll already have on hand:

  1. Cotton Balls:  serve as our paintbrushes for the project.
  2. Acrylic Paints: Choose a variety of autumn colors, such as red, orange, yellow, brown, and green. Acrylic paints work well because they are vibrant and dry quickly.
  3. Paper: You can use heavy white paper or a canvas board for a more long-lasting artwork.
  4. Glue: White school glue or a glue stick will help adhere the cotton balls to the paper.
  5. Markers or Crayons: Optional, but these can be used to add extra details to your artwork.
  6. Paintbrushes and Water: If you want to add some background details or blending to your painting.

Be sure to check out ALL of the free homeschool art activities here at How to Homeschool for Free!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Free Printable Country Word Searches!

If you’re looking for creative ways to engage your children in geography, language, and culture, these printable country word searches from 123Homeschool4Me are a great way to do it!

Homeschooling is all about customization and flexibility, and these country word searches fit seamlessly into that philosophy. Here’s how you can maximize their potential in your homeschool classroom:

  1. Geography Lessons: Make geography come alive by introducing a new country through its word search. Identify its location on a map, discuss its neighbors, and explore its significance in global context.
  2. Cultural Immersion: Each country’s word search comes with relevant terms, landmarks, and cultural icons. Use these as a starting point for exploring the country’s customs, traditions, and way of life.
  3. Language Exploration: These word searches often include words in the country’s native language. Take this as an opportunity to introduce your children to new languages, even if it’s just a few basic words.
  4. Critical Thinking: As your children hunt for words within the grid, they’re honing their critical thinking skills. They’re learning to analyze patterns, differentiate between letters, and apply logic.
  5. Multidisciplinary Learning: Expand the learning experience by combining word searches with other subjects. Incorporate writing assignments, drawing activities, or even cooking recipes from the countries you explore.

Making It Personal

One of the beauties of homeschooling is tailoring education to your children’s interests. Involve them in the selection process – let them choose which country’s word search they want to explore next. This not only fosters independence but also ensures they’re genuinely engaged in the learning process.

After completing a word search, encourage your children to share what they’ve learned. It could be through a presentation, a creative project, or a simple conversation. This helps reinforce their understanding and communication skills.

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Free Geology Videos for Kids from Geology Kitchen!

The world beneath our feet is a treasure trove of mysteries waiting to be uncovered. Geology, the study of Earth’s structure, composition, and processes, holds the key to understanding the planet’s history and its incredible formations. One resource that stands out as a great tool for home educators is Geology Kitchen from Esteem Education. This website offers a collection of free geology videos tailored for young learners, making the exploration of Earth’s geological wonders both engaging and educational.

Geology Unveiled: The Importance of Geology Education for Kids

Geology might sound like a complex scientific field, but at its core, it’s the study of the Earth’s processes and the forces that shape it over time. Teaching kids about geology goes beyond naming rocks; it fosters a deep appreciation for the planet’s history, ecosystems, and the role humans play in preserving its beauty. Geology education for kids can:

  1. Spark Curiosity: Kids are naturally curious, and geology offers a wealth of intriguing phenomena to captivate their interest, from volcanoes and earthquakes to fossils and minerals.
  2. Foster Observation Skills: Geology encourages keen observation of the natural world. Learning to recognize different rock types, landscapes, and geological formations enhances a child’s observation and analytical skills.
  3. Connect Science to Real Life: Geology is tangible and visible in our surroundings. By learning about the Earth’s processes, kids can connect scientific concepts to their daily experiences.

Geology Kitchen: A Rich Source of Exploration

The Geology Kitchen by Esteem Education offers a diverse range of educational videos that make learning geology a delightful and immersive experience. Here’s why it stands out:

  1. Engaging Visuals: Geology can be visually captivating, and these videos use animations, real-world footage, and colorful illustrations to bring geological concepts to life.
  2. Kid-Friendly Approach: The videos are tailored to suit young learners, presenting complex ideas in a simplified and accessible manner without compromising on accuracy.
  3. Interactive Learning: The Geology Kitchen encourages interactivity. Through experiments, demonstrations, and hands-on activities, kids can actively participate in the learning process.
  4. Varied Topics: From exploring different rock types and their formations to understanding geological phenomena like erosion and sedimentation, the Geology Kitchen covers a wide array of geology topics.

Accessing the Geology Kitchen: How to Get Started

  1. Visit the Website: Navigate to Esteem Education’s Geology Kitchen.
  2. Explore the Videos: Browse the collection of videos available on the website. Each video focuses on a specific geology topic and is designed to be engaging and informative.
  3. Enjoy and Learn: Sit back, watch the videos, and encourage your kids to absorb the knowledge presented. Consider taking notes or discussing the concepts together to enhance the learning experience.

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Exploring History through Fun: Free Christopher Columbus Facts Printable Coloring Pages!

History comes alive when we find creative ways to engage with it, and what better way to captivate your kids’ minds than through coloring pages that offer both entertainment and education? In this digital age, where screens dominate our attention, taking a step back to appreciate historical figures like Christopher Columbus through printable coloring pages can be a fantastic learning experience for children and even adults.

Kids Activities Blog has created these fun and free coloring pages as a great way to introduce kids to the man credited with discovering America. You can find them over here.

Christopher Columbus: A Brief Overview

Christopher Columbus, an Italian explorer, is often credited with discovering America in 1492. However, his voyage was just one part of a larger series of events that shaped the world as we know it today. Engaging with his story through coloring pages can offer a simplified yet intriguing introduction to this historical figure.

The Educational Value of Coloring Pages

Coloring pages have been a staple of childhood activities for generations, and their educational value goes beyond just a fun pastime. Here’s how coloring pages, especially those centered around historical figures like Christopher Columbus, can benefit learners of all ages:

  1. Visual Learning: Coloring pages provide visual representations of historical events and figures. They allow learners to grasp complex concepts and historical narratives through images, helping them remember facts more effectively.
  2. Fine Motor Skills: The act of coloring helps refine fine motor skills in young children, contributing to their overall physical and cognitive development.
  3. Historical Engagement: When coloring pages are accompanied by interesting facts and information, they encourage children to engage with history in a way that goes beyond textbooks.
  4. Multisensory Experience: The combination of visual engagement, tactile interaction (holding crayons or colored pencils), and cognitive processing creates a multisensory experience that enhances learning retention.

Be sure to check out all of our history resources at How to Homeschool for Free!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Free Online Phonics Lessons: Beginner to Advanced!

Reading Resource – Progressive Phonics

Progressive Phonics is a free phonics program that you can use to teach your little ones how to read. This program uses phonics and sight words, and there are handwriting lessons to go with each reading lesson.

***For our full list of online Phonics resources, check out our FREE Phonics Curriculum Options Resources page!***

You begin with the Alphabet books and then each book gets harder as you move through the different levels. You have the option of printing the books or having your child read them on the screen.

Go here to check out Progressive Phonics.

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

Free Printable Money Worksheets for Kids!

If you’re looking for a clear and easy approach to teaching kids the basics of money these printable money worksheets from All Kids Network are great way to introduce the basics for your littles!

After doing these worksheets, kids will be able to recognize pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters and be able to count amounts of money with different coins. Head over here to see all the worksheets available to print!

Also, check out all the free homeschool printables available on How To Homeschool For Free!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

FREE Greenleaf Guide to Old Testament History eBook!

The Greenleaf Guide to Old Testament History is available to download for completely FREE! All you have to do is go through the checkout process here and you will receive an email with a link to download the PDF. (no credit card is required during checkout)

This looks like an amazing resource for anyone looking to educate their kids on the basics of Old Testament. Here’s a brief synopsis of what you get from the book’s description:

This book outlines a reading program which will take you through the history of Israel by reading through the historical books from Genesis to Nehemiah chronologically. Old Testament history is divided into 196 Bible readings (approximately 1 chapter each) along with some suggestions of how to cover the material and keep it interesting. For each reading there is a series of questions to help you focus on the significant details.

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

FREE Animated Science Videos and Curriculum!

Math Science Nucleus has several FREE resources for homeschooling science!  They are a non-profit organization that is teaching science to kids.  You’ll find all kinds of fun resources like Interactive Storybooks, Lessons, Experiments, Labs, and tons more.

I love the interactive storybooks that teach kids all kinds of science lessons including the moon, electricity, and various cycles including the universe, life cycle, water cycle, and plate tectonics. They’re a fun, visual way to learn and reinforce certain important scientific subjects.

Go here to check out Math Science Nucleus. For more free online Science resources, check out our FREE Science Curriculum Options Resources page!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

The Question of Homeschool Placement Tests and FREE Testing Resources!

Do homeschoolers have to take standardized tests?

This is a tenuous question for a lot of people. Standardized testing is a polarizing subject, and people have strong opinions about it. For homeschoolers in certain areas, it’s a necessity.

The answer to this question will depend on the laws for your area. Whether or not you have to take homeschool standardized tests will depend on where you live and the homeschool testing requirements for your area. State laws (and country laws, if you live outside of the United States) govern whether or not your homeschooler needs to be assessed on a regular basis. There are some relaxed homeschooling states that do not require homeschool testing of any kind, while other states require regular assessments or testing of homeschooled students, generally on a periodic or annual basis.

Head over to our handy list here for state-by-state homeschool requirements.

What about placement tests?

For some learners, it can be helpful to assess aptitude and progress at some points. There are many homeschooling placement tests available from private companies. Many of these have fees associated with them but there are some free options available.

Alpha Omega

Alpha Omega offers placement tests in subjects such as reading, writing, and math. One of the great things about Alpha Omega is that they offer testing options for specific curriculum choices, such as Switched on Schoolhouse, LIFEPAC, Horizons, or Monarch math. It’s a one-stop-shop for free placement tests and placing an order for curriculum for the school year based on those test results. If you’re not interested in using the Alpha Omega curriculum, you will still get results that can help you determine an approximate grade level for your child.


Internet4Classrooms is another popular homeschool placement test resource. They range from first grade through college preparation. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the number of options available for each grade level.

If you’d rather administer paper tests, you’ll find the printable options here

K5 Learning

The online reading and math assessment from K5 Learning is good for your youngest students! You can access it for free with a 14-day trial that also includes their entire program! You’ll also receive a free report providing an objective evaluation of your student’s reading and math skills.

This curriculum allows your children to receive a personalized online learning program so that they learn at their own pace and level.

Math U See

While their curriculum doesn’t follow the standard grade-level approach, you’ll find Math U See provides math class options for your youngest students through Calculus. Their free placement tool is online and you’ll receive recommendations online and can call customer support for more advice as well.

You’ll also find many free resources available through the parent and teacher resource pages including worksheets, drills, webinars, and more.

Free placement test options

Saxon Math

Saxon Math is a traditional Textbook based math curriculum that covers Kindergarten through Advanced Mathematics. You can determine where your children will need to start with the free printable placement tests for their curriculum.

While these placement tests are featured on Sonlight’s website you can purchase Saxon math at various places online after completing the free placement test.


You’ll need to create an account to access the Monarch Math and Language Arts placement tests for your students to take. They offer online curriculum for all grades and subjects!

If your students enjoy completing their work online then definitely check out this curriculum, just keep in mind you’ll need an internet connection to complete all lessons.


Sonlight is a Christian-based curriculum company, also providing free homeschool placement tests. No need to make a purchase. Test options include language arts, a general reading assessment, and tests for several popular math curriculum programs.

This curriculum is literature-based, and a wonderful option for kids who love to read!


Lifepac homeschool curriculum features workbooks that are student-paced for Kindergarten through 12th Grade. They offer curriculum for Bible, Math, Language Arts, Science, History, and more! There are free printable placement tests for Bible, History/Geography, Language Arts, Math, and Science covering Grades 1-8 and 7-12.

SAT Practice Tests

Before it comes time for your homeschooler to take the SAT, it’s time to practice, practice, PRACTICE! Check out these great resources for practice ACT and SAT tests!

***Be sure to join our How To Homeschool For Free Support Group for daily encouragement and more great resources for your homeschooling journey!***

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