Why we don’t start school at 8 am

Written by contributor Kris of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers

A note from Jamie: This post originally published on November 18, 2011. Enjoy!

You know those homeschooling families that get up before the sun, do their morning chores, have a big hearty breakfast, and start school by 8:00?

Yeah, we’re not one of those.

Not that there is anything wrong with being one of those families. To be honest, I can see many benefits in being early risers and many days I wish we were. However, we just aren’t.

We’re a family full of night owls who aren’t especially friendly before at least 10:00.  We start slowly in the mornings, we don’t like to eat for the first couple of hours that we’re up (well, except me — I’ve learned to eat early since I’ve started running), and we need some time to warm up before anyone can expect more than grunts that pass for conversation from most of  us.

That’s why part of making school simple for us means that we don’t start school at 8 AM. Or 9 AM. Or even 10 AM. On a good day, we start by 11 AM.

I used to stress over our late-starting tendencies. I used to try to get everyone up and get school started by a time that is more socially acceptable in both homeschooling and public schooling circles. Those attempts resulted in a stressed-out, grumpy mom and sleepy, irritable kids.

So, I quit forcing a routine that didn’t suit our family.

We are night owls. Period. One of the benefits of homeschooling is that we can work by the schedule that best fits our family. We do our best work in the afternoon, so why fight that? I once asked my husband about our schedule and he actually prefers the days when we aren’t quite finished with school when he gets home. It allows him time to unwind before the kids are demanding his attention.

So, I usually get the kids up sometime between 10:00 and 10:30, after I’ve had my quiet time and my morning run. We do some basic household chores, have our Bible lesson, and do some light schoolwork before stopping for lunch around noon when they’re typically ready to eat. Then, in the afternoon, we tackle the bulk of our schoolwork.

Do I worry that my kids won’t be able to handle a more typical schedule when they get older and have jobs? No. I worked a traditional first shift job before I became a stay-at-home mom. I didn’t like getting up early, but I adapted and so will they. They may not even have to adapt. After all, somebody has to work those second and third shift jobs.

Does it get hectic sometimes? Occasionally, when we have commitments in the early afternoon and evening. Usually, though, we just adjust our schedule when we have to. We’re homeschoolers; we’re flexible. We may not like it, but we are capable of getting an early start.

For the most part, though, I have come to terms with the fact that our homeschool may not look like other families’ homeschools – at least, not between the hours of 8 and 11 AM – but that’s okay. It’s not supposed to because it’s our homeschool based on our family’s needs.

That means it looks just the way it’s supposed to look – for us.

What time does your family usually start school?

About Kris

Kris, who blogs at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers, is a homeschooling mom to three amazing kids and wife to her unbelievably supportive husband. She enjoys photography, running, and drinking sweet tea. You can connect with Kris on her blog, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.


  1. I am a night owl also. However, my daughter is like a farmer, up with the roosters! LOL!
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  2. We could exchange kids for a week and they’d fit right in to each other’s schedules 😉
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  3. I just love this and will definitly post this on my new blog. I have stressed so much about this its unreal – but after reading this am not going to anymore, the whole point of homeschooling is to teach children in a more natural and relaxed environment and if they have been in school for several years like my eldest one has they need time to readjust – the most important thing is that the kids are happy if not whats the point.
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  4. It’s so great that homeschooling means doing whatever is right for your family! I just feel awful for kids who are night owls and have to get on a bus at 7am.

    My son and I are SO early birds. We sometimes are DONE with school by 8am! And always done by 11 at the very latest.

    I am usually up around 4am. My son gets up around 5:30. By 10 am I am on my way downhill for the day!

  5. I absolutely loved this post. We do not start until 11 or 12 each day. I felt like I was the only one, knowing I wasn’t, but still felt like it.

  6. I LOVE that I’m not the only one out there who does this! LOL! We pretty much do EXACTLY the same thing…right down to the ability to start early but not liking it! Thanks for posting!

  7. We do not get started until 9:30. It’s nice to slowly accept the morning before jumping into school lessons.
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  8. I am a early riser, but my daughter is not. We start school at 10:00am. It’s what works for us. Why fight it? LOL

  9. I thought I was the only one that started that late! We are up early. However, my daughter likes to just play, listen to books and color in her room for a couple of hours. So, we are usually lucky to start by 11. I have really been struggling with whether I should push her to get an earlier start. But, then I feel like she is content and free play is important. I agree with the “they won’t be able to function in the real world” theory. I also have older teens. I have allowed them to wake up on their own and work at their own pace. They all have jobs and take outside classes now. When they have to get up and be at work or class by 8 am or earlier. They don’t have any problem.

  10. Oh I love it that someone else does this!!! I am a new homeschooler and we live in Mexico and everything we do here with our ministry is late at night. House churches don’t even begin until 9pm and we have a 7 year old and a 6 year old so I have to begin waking them up around 10:00 also. Oh good…now I feel reassured I am not a bad mom:) Thank you!!!!!!!!
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  11. I completely relate. Our average start time is 10:30am… I started this school year (our first yr of homeschooling) with an 8:30 start time – but it was just too stressful. Our evenings often include activities which make it difficult to get my kids to bed early – so sleeping in just plain ol needs to happen. Thanks for sharing! And now… I should go wake my 6th grade son!
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  12. Oh my word, thank you so much for this post. I’m in the research/prepare stage, since my oldest won’t start school until fall of 2013 (most likely). I’m NOT a morning person, despite my best efforts, and that’s compounded with a chronic illness that means mornings must move very slowly for me. I’ve been trying to figure out what school should look like for us, but I’m very much a letter-of-the-law girl, and find myself in bondage to implied or imagined regulations that aren’t. that. important. Starting early morning (8-9a) is one of them. So thanks for this word, and for helping me see that this isn’t a “must” area.

  13. Ha! I think that we live in the same house!!
    This past week was brutal with having early riser guests in our home that totally INSISTED that my children start their school work by 8:30! GASP!! Not happenin’ lady! lol
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    • WHOA!! I think I would have a fit if someone came into my house and told me how to run things! I am sure you handled it better then I would have!

  14. Thanks! We’re the same. In fact, I had to put notes in our homeschool phone directory not to call the house before 9 a.m. because my phone would start ringing at 7!
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  15. Yeah! We’re night owls too. I am usually up by 7:00 am, but I let my son sleep until he wakes up. Sometimes he is up by 8:00. Other times it’s 10:00. It works well for us, but it does feel socially unacceptable. I too tried to start school by 9:00 am. Then it became 9:30. Then 10:00. Now I don’t fight it. We work best in the afternoon. Sometimes my son gets excited about a project at 9:00 or 10:00 pm. I don’t want to make him stop exploring…and I don’t want to go to bed anyway! Thanks so much for sharing your schedule. Makes me feel so much better!

  16. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m in my second year of home schooling and have been stressing over this constantly. We are all night owls too and I simply have not been able to get us up and getting to school before 10:00 or 10:30. There’s much solace in knowing there’s someone else out there who operates the way we do and that IT’S OK! I’ve been wanting to embrace that part of who we are rather than fight it, but like you said, social pressures and visions of home school moms who not only teach eight kids, but run a farm, write books, maintain blogs and knit sweaters and mittens for their whole family every year. I’m not making fun of these women, they inspire me, but I often find myself weighing my gifts against theirs and I come up short. Thanks for reminding me that it’s not going to look the same for all of us.

  17. this is US! others have finished school by the time we start…i luv the flexibility of homeschool.

  18. LOVE THIS! I am an extreme night owl and I hate it when people seem to think I should always mold to someone else’s schedule. To each their own

  19. I used to have friends that were the same way. They started work after lunch and stayed up late. Here I am the early riser and if we try to any academics after say 1pm I’m just not into it.

    I am very grateful that my kids get up around 8am if not earlier. Helps me out a lot!

    Kris P
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  20. Thanks for this great article! We are one of those families who do start early and get on it while the energy level is the highest. I love to run in the mornings, but it usually works best for me to run in the afternoons at this point in our lives. I love it that we all have freedom and flexibility to maintain the schedule that best fits our family! Cheers to all of you and your families for having the courage to do so.
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  21. Right on! You said it all when you told us “we do our best work in the afternoon.” That is one of the most attractive things (to me) about homeschooling – the ability to taylor our plans around the individual people in our house. We are totally the chores/hearty brkfast/done before lunch people. But we are farmers. And we totally do our best work in the mornings. Trying to do school in my house during afternoons (even when we’ve had the morning off) is like trying to dry the floor with a wet towel. Tedious and unproductive. Here’s to letting our children learn how they learn best!
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  22. I used to try to start “school” just after breakfast as well. But, it just plain didn’t work for us. Instead, I took it slow, noticing patterns, and found that for us, “school” works great from 1pm-4pm. We wake up at 10, little snack, exercise, chores, showers, etc – have an actual meal at 12, then start our lessons. At 4, the neighbor kids are home from school and ready to play, and I can clean up and get dinner going. We’ll sometimes do Language Arts/reading after dinner.

    Odd, but I’m glad to not feel pressured into some perceived expectation. Thank you for the encouragement!

  23. I had to give up the 8 or 9 AM start time too. We start between 10 and 11 and it has worked out so much better. I, too, struggle with “but this isn’t what most people do/ are we just undisciplined” but for crying out loud, we are adults, we are in charge of our families for a reason, and I have to accept what’s best for me and my kids without worrying about what others think. (Easier said than done!)

  24. Thanks for sharing…we have been homeschooling for 9 yrs and have always seemed to be on the late side. Dad is self-employed and works pretty late. SO we have late nights to hang out with him. It’s nice to know there others that Enjoy the flexibility of homeschooling. Have a Blessed day

  25. My oldest is only in 1st grade and we don’t do school till my youngest goes down for a nap after lunch…

  26. I would LOVE it if my kids slept in until 10 am! But, unfortunately, I love my evenings even more. All of my kids have always been up between 7 and 8 am, because we keep prompt bedtimes of between 7 and 8 pm (adjusted for certain days and events, etc). I couldn’t trade my evening time alone with my hubby- or even by myself- for letting the kids stay up later, even though I think they could happily be night owls. But, we still don’t start school work until around 10 am most mornings. I would rather not rush through breakfast, chores, and such to have a set 8:00 start. So, we get up early, but don’t start school till later. :)

  27. Lorrie Morgan says:

    Don’t you just love the freedom of homeschooling? I am a night owl as well (I was up until 3 am last night!) My kids get up and do their silent reading around 8:30. If I am awake, I join them. If not, they wake me up to do Bible and AWANA together. Then we pray for the day ahead. They get to eat, do a couple chores and head on to “energy time.” Their time to explore outside is my time to get dressed, do devotions and any other daily tasks that need to be done. Lunch is at noon, followed by read-aloud time and then the bulk of the rest of our school is done from 1-3:00 while my daughter naps. Once she wakes up, she joins as the other 2 are completing their work to do her “school.” She is 5 and we still continue this format. It has worked well for our schedules and lifestyle, even though it is different from the typical “done by noon” homeschooling family.

  28. You know, we used to have a good thing going before we moved over the summer. Now, it doesn’t work like it did before. I am starting to realize that a lazy afternoon everyday works for my family. We work hard in the morning and in the evenings but our afternoons have been come our down time. Not that we are good early morning people, but we are working by 830, although usually it’s in the car 😛 It’s working for us…I wish I would have gotten it about 3 months ago though. 😎

  29. We just kind of start once we are all up, fed, and truly awake. Some mornings that is 9am, but others it’s 11am. This is one aspect I enjoy of homeschooling, since I work late hours 1am – 3am. Though my kids are younger(5 & 8) so they’re in bed by 8pm each “school night.”

  30. God knows just when to give me encouragement like this. Again, I thought I was the only one too and felt guilty every morning. I would tell myself to get up by 7 and start school by 8 so we could be done by lunch or soon after. But that is not the way it works around here either. We get rolling around 9/10. It seems to work. I agree that our kids will be able to adapt to any situation when they are older and have early morning jobs. Happy is better than cranky.

  31. I am so glad to see so many on the same page (or near it) as us. My two high schoolers actually attend public school and leave at 6:30am!!! So sad. But they love it (the school, not the time) and it gets me up to spend quiet time and working before the other two get up. We start somewhere between 9-10 and I love it!! My middle schooler gets the rest he needs and my 3rd grader gets play time. Perfectly imperfect made for my family!!!

  32. My 4th grader starts school at nine. Any later and they’ve had too much free time in the morning and get squirrely. Any earlier and I AM GRUMPY. lol The 2nd grader jumps in there somewhere, too. The little are free range.

  33. Thank you!!! We are second generation homeschoolers and my mom in law is schooling her second batch of kiddos, they adopted. They are in school from 7am until 4pm!!! I would shrivel up and die on that schedule!!!! We have three kiddos, a preschooler, a kindergartener, and a fourth grader. “Mom” is always tisk-tisking on my apparent lack of education. I really needed to hear that there is nothing wrong with my schedule!! Thanks so much!

  34. Being able to start anytime we wanted was on of the reasons we decided to homeschool! I start whenever the kids wake up. With my little ones that means we start between 6:00-7:00 am (I’m bleary-eyed, they’re not) but my 11 year old doesn’t wake up until later so she starts around 10:00. The key word in our house is flexibility!

  35. Great post – thank you. I have an eight year-old and a two year-old. For the past two years we’ve opted to do our sit-down school work in the afternoon while the little one sleeps. This frees up our mornings for activities that we can do well together (i.e. going to the beach, farmer’s markets, the library, hikes) given the age span.

  36. Lol!! We are so random :). Somedays we start by 8:30, but other days not until after lunch. I’m just not very good at keeping a schedule!!

  37. It’s interesting because I always feel weird because we start late. My daughter is a night owl like me and I have trouble sleeping at night due to chronic pain issues–but I would feel badly that we weren’t ‘normal’. I need to remember that whatever works best for homeschool families is ‘normal’ for that particular family! :)

  38. This will be me. Right now, I have 2 little ones who don’t school at all, but I know that, since we rarely get out of the house before 10 am, it’s a sure bet our school hours will look similar. How encouraging to know I am not alone, and that working with my family’s natural rhythm is best.

  39. Shh..won’t they kick us out of the good homeschool mom’s club if we admit we don’t start school at 8am?!

    My daughter somehow managed to be a morning person in a family of night owls. She is up several hours before I am on most days. I have started e-mailing her assignments the night before so she can wake up and get started with school while I am still snoozing away. It is better for all of us if I’ve had time to be awake before my son thunders down the stairs.

    We are having to be a little more disciplined about getting going this year so that we aren’t still working at 5pm…

  40. When we homeschooled we typically started our school day at about 9. Some of mine may start earlier if they wanted to be done earlier. Others, not so much. The good thing was, if they were super busy with late evenings working at community theater or other extracurricular activities, they didn’t have to get up at break of dawn the next morning!
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  41. I have been forcing myself to wake up at 7:30 or 8:00. My son refuses to cooperate when I give him free time before school work. With that said… He’s been starting around 11 or 12 every day. He runs around and plays, even once I sit him down he’s at a phase where he refuses to focus. I can’t seem to win but I’m going to just have faith that eventually he will respect the process. If he doesn’t maybe I’ll go back to trying to having structured learning time at x:00
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  42. LOL! Thanks so much for this post. I was feeling really guilty about not starting school earlier in the day, but the fact is Mom does better starting a little later! 10ish… or maybe 11ish :-) Most days we manage to finish everything and the things that we don’t? There’s always tomorrow!

  43. This is our 12th year homeschooling and I’ve had some night owl years… by nature I like to stay up knitting or reading until the quiet dawn hours.

    In some seasons we’ve schooled and night, and slept during the day.

    But as my family has grown our needs have changed and this year we do get up and get breakfast and chores done and start school by 8 am. Yes, the first few weeks I was irritable and the kids were grumpy, but as all habits take time to form, after the first three weeks or so, we became used to the schedule and we like having our school work done by noon and having our afternoons free to play in the sunshine and go do things. I’ve found my children have greatly benefited by the change. They have learned they can learn a new trick if they apply themselves, and, even though they greatly enjoy homeschooling and are chomping at the bit to get started in the morning they like the freedom to pursue hobbies and their own rabbit trails of study in the afternoon without having school hanging over them.

    Our Fridays are less formal. It’s our music/art/poetry/literature day and our music teacher shows up right after lunch, so the entire morning has a festive, artsy, relaxed feel to it, and sometimes we don’t get started until 9… and we may skip some not-so-necessary chores. :)

  44. In one way I would prefer this, but the rest of my family including kids would not. So, we start around 9:30 am, sometimes 9, sometimes 10…but usually 9:30. That is my goal. The kids get up at 7am. From 7-9:30 we take time to eat, eat breakfast, clean up, do some basic chores, get dressed etc. I don’t really feel truly awake until around the 9:30/10 mark.

  45. Thanks for sharing this! I believe it takes a while for each of us to feel comfortable doing what feels right for our individual families. We don’t have to fit anyone else’s schedule except what works for our family. It is so freeing when we realize this!
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  46. Yesterday my 5yo slept until 10a.m., but that’s unusual. He’s usually up around 9. My 2yo gets up a little earlier, but we are night owls too, and we like to sleep late. It’s one of the reasons I love homeschooling. And since my son is only 5, I don’t do a lot of “school” with him. But sometimes we have a lesson or two while the 2yo is napping. I used to worry about this schedule, but I’ve come to realize it works well for us, so why change it?

    I was reading in Discover Your Child’s Learning Styles that most children would benefit from starting serious schoolwork later in the morning. In school many students have to face harder subjects early in the morning even if this doesn’t suit them. I’m really grateful we can homeschool so that we can have a schedule suited to us.
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  47. YAY!!!! I love this post! I have 4 kids. This is their first year homeschooling. My daughter is a complete night owl. The older boys are usually up by 7, but she sleeps until 10 most days. When we have commitments, she can get up, but I feel like, for right now, we are doing what\’s best for us. We don\’t get started until 11 most days, but I would stink at teaching before then anyway. My older son does online classes before I wake up sometimes, and we are always done by dinner. I think it\’s just the beauty of homeschooling. I like to let us get our wits about us before we try it. If we didn’t, everybody would be at each others throats.

  48. What a refreshing and honest post! I have never been able to get all of my morning “stuff” done and get school going much before 9:30. I was hoping that we could all feel an hour ahead after the time changed, but alas, we have somehow re-adjusted our schedule and are not really going to bed or getting up earlier than a couple of weeks ago. My husband has a job that frequently keeps him away from home until later in the evening, so our children have always had a later bedtime than other families, 9:30-10 and they wake up between 7-8, usually. I do enjoy the mornings when I can have quiet time, accomplish a few other chores and tasks, and have breakfast and Bible study time with the kids before we ever get school going.
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  49. That will so be our family too! My toddler and I wake up around 10 am, my husband works second shift and wakes up with us. We have breakfast around 11. Actually our schedule is really messed up right now since I gave birth to our second baby yesterday! I am looking forward to the flexibility of homeschooling!
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  50. That’s us too! We have graduated four of our five and now just have our 13-yr-old to homeschool! When all my kids were little, we got up much earlier, and started school by 8:30 or 9. But as they grew older, they wanted/needed to sleep longer. We normally start school between 10 and 11 on most days.

  51. I only have a preschooler but we usually do his lessons after lunch around 1 or 2, sometimes later. As neither of us are morning people I can see this schedule continuing in coming years. Thanks for for sharing or I may have felt I HAD to change to morning work just because he started first grade.

  52. Thanks for this perspective. It’s very freeing!
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  53. THANK. YOU. SO. MUCH. for writing this. We used to get started first thing in the morning and that worked fine for a while. But now, it is better if we can just slowly do school throughout our day. Maybe later on when my kids are bigger, we’ll change again, but now, we’ll do some school, we’ll play outside, do some school, work outside, do some school… you get the idea.

    If we’re running errands, we’ll pack in a few school books in the car. My son (first grade) will read a chapter book to himself or he’ll read aloud and we’ll have a conversation in the car about whatever we’re reading. And don’t think
    I won’t stoop to pulling out a school library book for bedtime reading! :)

    Flexible is the word at our house, for sure. I love hearing about other non-traditionally timed homeschooling families because it eases my sometimes guilt about being non-traditional.

  54. Ditto!!! We are night owls too and tend to staying up late, waking late and working late(r) than other school families. Am I stressed? No, because I know they can get up early if they have to (last year we got up at 6am every morning to commute to school). DH stresses about it, but I hope he is getting more relaxed.
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  55. We’re nocturnal too! My 33 months old fall asleep at about 11+pm after spending some evening time with Daddy. Then we wake up at about 10am, learning starts at about 11am-12pm. I love the flexibility of homeschooling and avoiding the morning traffic rush. :)
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  56. I love this! We start late too. 11am on an early day, but normally after lunch. I have 4 boys ages 8-4 and 2 girls (1 and 2). By about 2pm on a typical day the kids have done their chores and have gotten several hours of play out of their systems and are more willing to sit down and do an hour or two of learning. Plus there is the added benefit of it being the girls naptime. :) I love the flexibility of homeschooling even if what works for us is a bit unconventional.
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  57. We’re pretty much unschoolers so for us….school is life and life is school. And that is why I LOVE IT! we do have organized learning times and they are NEVER at 8 am and hardly ever before 11 am :)
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  58. Marcy Cherry says:

    Thank you! So good to hear another family who does not jump up at the crack of dawn to have chores done and school finished by 10 am. lol I always have felt guilty that we were late starters, but his article was very freeing.

  59. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I have been fretting some over the fact that we don’t start early. Thank you for letting me know that I’m not the only one!!
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  60. Uuuhhhh yeah… we start around 10:00 AM. Actually, we are very disciplined just not early disciplined! LOl!

    :) Janet

  61. THANK

    We get up later too. I have a 13yo boy and it’s nice to be able to let him get 12 hours of sleep while he’s growing, and he IS growing!

    I found that my girls do most of their writing at 9:00 at night. Pages and pages of writing. I just need to learn to listen to my kids.
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  62. Vickilynn says:


    Thank you for the post.

    Our family has had a lot of schedule changes in the 22 years we’ve been homeschooling, but we are so blessed to be able to make our homeschooling fit OUR needs, not someone else’s.

    We’ve been early-risers and night-owls. Right now, we are in the night-owl phase (except for me) and it suits us fine.

  63. We have been homeschooling for a number of years and I have always tried to do the first thing in the morning done by lunch deal but this year has been a real struggle. I just decided over Christmas break that we would start our school day in the afternoon. I was thinking how weird it would look to all of my friends who homeschool but they’ll learn that’s my schedule and expect it. My husband works second shift, he has for a year. We started eating dinner at noon so we could eat together when he started this shift. Unfortunately, I kept up with starting school at 8. Now I realize it’s foolish. We’ll start when Dad goes to work. It will make it difficult for my youngest to play with her public school friends in the neighborhood but they school year round here so they’ll make good use of the days public school is off. Thanks for the article, I’m glad to know I’m in good company.

  64. Liberating! Glad to know we are not the only “slackers”. :) Thanks!
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  65. Thank you, we are just starting out with a K/1st and a toddler who are night owls like DH& I. Right now school happens during afternoon nap or it does not go well at all. I like to get out in the late morning for library time, errands or other life school experiences with both kids. For years we have tried to fit into our friends schedules for play dates etc but since they are all finding their own PS friends now, we’re trying to find more HS friends with flexibility.

  66. WOW! I thought we were the only anormal family! Thanks for sharing, it is really liberating to know we’re not alone!

    – Night Owl Dad

  67. My situation is different because I homeschool my youngest one who is in sixth grade. Her two older sisters who are in 9th and 11th grade go to public school. So I prefer to start homeschooling once they leave for school in the mornings around 9. If I waited until later we would be doing it when they would get home and my youngest gets very distracted. So for now this is working for us and we are usually done by noon. This is her first year of homeschooling so of course we might change it aound as we get further into it.

  68. Amen sister!!! That is the first time I have ever heard another homeschooling mom share it, and I feel SOOOO much better now! Whew!

    We start our schoolwork around 10:30-11:00am too, and it just works great for us too. Even when I’ve attempted to start earlier, it never worked… so eventually I figured, why bother! Everyone is much happier this way…

    Thank you so much for taking 2 tons of guilt off of me!
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  69. We have always been morning schoolers but this year has not worked out like the other years. The kids are needing more sleep and instead of waking them up to “get the day going” I let them sleep and when we do start school they are more willing to work without whining. It’s hard for me to switch it up but I’m learning it’s so much easier to go with the flow when it comes to their school time. Great post!
    Elizabeth’s latest post: Pregnancy: Week 36

  70. Thank you for sharing this article. It’s good to know that I’m not the only one who starts later in the day. I worried for awhile that we weren’t starting earlier but if I forced it to happen, we would be both grumpy so I decided to just go with the flow as long as we got things accomplished by the end of the day. :)

  71. We start between 11 and 2, most days. Depends on how the day is going.

  72. Thanks for this!! It really is freeing to hear…since we are a family of surfers and our schedule can be all over the place (depending on the waves.; )) I have tried to force things, but it only ends in frustration. I guess it’s time I let go a little more. I’m encouraged!

  73. I am so relieved to know that I am not the only one who starts our homeschool day at 10:30 or 11 instead of 8 like they do in a public school.It just seems like it works better for me and my son;we’re both a bit of night-owls,and he still gets all his work done.

  74. Why fight it!! Amen!!

    With two teenagers, I love being able to have my morning before they wake up.
    I can have my peaceful Bible study time and then start my ritual of morning chores. Ultimately, I think it makes our kids more accountable when they can have a say in their own schedules. They know their assignments, what needs to be done. If they need to start their day at 9 AM, they do. It has also gone a long way to staying healthy in our household when everyone has proper sleep and isn’t trying to burn the candle at both ends.

    Thanks for the validation. :)

  75. Hmm, That’s not normal? We usually do our book subjects in the evening. I guess my child is a night owl. I always thought that is why we homeschool, to be more accommodating to our children. When it gets dark by 4:30 in the winter, that is when we come inside and start school. That way he gets all day to play and as far as I’m concerned, play is where children get the bulk of their learning.

  76. I cannot say how many hours a day we spend in actual school… but it isn’t nearly enough compared to my kids school-going peers… we start way too late in the day and finish way too early for anyone to think that we are are actually getting any education done!!! We are barely breathing before ten/ten-thirty in the morning… Though lately we have been starting at eleven sharp because an hour of workbooks and an hour of reading and journaling means that we can be finished school in time for lunch at 1pm. Two hours a day of formalish seat work is more than enough and most people wouldn’t call what we do before or after that school… but that’s when my kids are constructing with legos and building forts and researching the latest book they are writing or painting or crafting or playing games… or heaven forbid down the road playing in the rock pools at the beach, listening to audio books, practicing musical instruments, reading library books, cleaning tanks at the local aquarium… no not school/educational at all!!!
    se7en’s latest post: Se7en + 1 Review Justin Bonello’s Ultimate Braai Book – and a Double GiveAway!!!

  77. We have a somewhat out-of-norm schedule but it’s on the early side. Our kids, no matter what time they go to bed, wake before 6 a.m. So we just go to bed early, all of us, and are deep into math by 7 a.m. and off to the academic races after that.
    I always sort of hope when neighbors see my children bopping around outdoors at 1 or 2 they realize the kids started school before many people have brewed their first cup of coffee. I know I don’t need to feel guilty but I try to find a way to mention it lest they think we’re slackers. :-)

  78. We start school in the afternoons whenever my littlest goes down for her nap. We’re all happier that way!
    Kimberly’s latest post: Busy Working

  79. We tend to begin at about 10am, as my daughter has always been a night owl (and hubby too). We do tend to run out of time for everything on many days, because we have many afternoon commitments. I have not yet found the perfect balance of timing our days, as it does seem like we are scrambling or not getting finished on many days.
    Debbye’s latest post: How and When To Help Your Baby or Toddler Stop the Pacifier

  80. Dawnielle Penn says:

    When we first started 8 years ago, we started at 8:00. Now I work a few days a week early mornings and get off at 9:00 a.m. so we will start a little after 9.
    That’s nice that you share with others that you can homeschool the way that works best for your family. :-)

  81. THANK YOU!!! This practically brought tears to my eyes. Such a relief to know that we’re not the only ones. I have five children ages 4 months-8 years and we are so not morning people! Our schedule has always been “different” from even our homeschool friends. Such a relief. I’m not going to feel guilty about it any more!

  82. Rachel Griffiths says:

    I am homeschooling my 13 year old son because he has severe IBS and would struggle to attend school. He is sick every morning and only begins to feel better in the early hours of the afternoon so we work around his illness. I have always felt somewhat apologetic for not being a “perfect” scheduled homeschoolers but stories like yours help to relieve that stress.

  83. LOVE THIS!
    We have been the same way. . .except we hide it! LOL

    Well, not anymore, but we used to. . . you know, when the phone rings at 9:30 am (!!!) you try to answer it all chipper like you’ve been awake for hours and nearly done with school?

    And about adaptability. . .when my son started college, he had NO trouble adapting to getting up at 6:30 am after the first week. Me, on the other hand, well that’s a whole ‘nother talk show.

    Thanks for writing this article!

  84. Since my son is a teenager and I work nights, school around 11 works better for us too. That s the beauty of homeschooling, the ability to adapt to your day. Isn’t this a nice skill to teach to our children!

  85. Thank you so much for this article! Its so nice to know that we’re not the only ones that get up and get started later. My daughter used to be a morning person but since she’s been a teen that has changed. I read an article that said when teens sleep later they do better at school. Since we homeschool we can definitely do that.

  86. So glad to hear we are not the only night owls out there!! We start school around 11am and stay up until 11pm. It seems to work better with my children’s internal clocks. Of course, I love a good nights sleep and love that my kids like to sleep late!

  87. We are lucky to start before noon. Allowing my little night owls to sleep in lets me work (since I work from home) and blog. It also lets me finish up last minute stuff and relax a bit before having to deal with those days when they just aren’t excited about anything. I’m an early bird by nature, I’ve learned that my children aren’t so I don’t try to force it on them.

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