Summer Homeschool Catch Up

by | Jun 10, 2019 | Homeschool Mom Helps

Last Updated May 30, 2023
Homeschool Catch Up

Playing homeschool catch-up can feel overwhelming! Learning how homeschooling over the summer can help you not only catch up but also get a jump start on next year’s work!

Missed Homeschool Goals

I’ve been homeschooling my kids for over 4 years now and this year I experienced a first.

It’s mid-May, parents are flooding social media with cutesy photos of their children finishing up their school year, and my kids are still a mile away from the finish line I so carefully planned out a the beginning of the year.

Not finishing our school year in the cookie-cutter time frame, felt like a big slap in the face.

Mom guilt, failure, shame — I was feeling it all!

Missing Your Deadlines in Your Homeschool

While at first, I felt like the blame for not reaching our homeschool goals should fall on my shoulders, I quickly realized non of this was my fault.

This year was jam-packed with unexpected interruptions.

Our first semester was thoroughly planned and went more smoothly than any other first semester in our entire homeschool history!

So naturally, I totally thought this was going to be our year!

Then, we got a new puppy, my mom had major surgery and needed to stay with us for a period of time, and my dad almost died.

The laundry piled up and I couldn’t even function well enough to get dinner on the table more than once a week – let alone actually school the kids!

Life got thrown in my face over and over again.

Summer Homeschool Catch-Up

While it was hard for me to accept the fact that we had gotten so far behind in our lessons at first, I quickly came to the conclusion that it was something I needed to tackle before fall.

Since we utilize a 3-day homeschool week during the school year and tend to homeschool (a bit) in summer anyway, I knew I could easily tuck some extra lessons in here and there to help us get back on track.

Making sure the kids didn’t feel overwhelmed with the amount of school work they had, however, was going to be slightly more challenging!

That’s why creating a homeschool catch-up plan was essential.

Creating a Homeschool Catch-Up Plan

I am a huge planner, you guys!

So naturally, like everything else in my life, our summer homeschool catch-up schedule started with a hot cup of coffee, a journal, a pen, and a plan.

Brain Dump How to Catch up On Homeschool

If you are nearing what should be the end of your school year but have found yourself struggling to get it done, this one is for you!

Homeschool Catch-up Breakdown

When you get behind in homeschool lessons, creating a catch-up plan can help.

From taking time off to getting stuff done, these are the steps I took to create a failproof catch-up plan for our homeschool!

  • Take Time Off

Whether it’s mounds of laundry, your homeschool lessons, or just life in general, before creating a functioning catch-up plan you must first take some time off to regroup.

I know this almost sounds counterproductive, but it’s completely necessary.

Don’t plan any lessons or focus on other overwhelming household tasks for a day or 2.

Plan only simple, frozen, crock-pot, or take-out meals that require little effort on your part while letting your kids spend their day playing or coloring.

This simply allows you a few days to relieve some stress, catch up on mundane things, and walk into this challenge feeling motivated and ready.

  • Brain Dump

Brain dumping is essential when attempting any type of new strategy or plan.

Take some time to brain dump, catch your breath, and get your thoughts together.

Simply write out all the things!

Don’t worry too much about being neat and tidy at first, or even having things written down in order.

Just dump it all on the page as you think of it.

Planning Homeschool Catch Up

Write down how many lessons your kids are behind on, other school things you want to fit in over the summer months, and any breaks or family trips you might have planned.

Then, assess the damage.

Are your kids only behind a few weeks or are they behind an entire semester?

Can you realistically get everyone caught up like you want to over the summer months or do you need to extend your homeschool catch-up into the first few weeks of fall?

Thankfully, we will only be using half of our summer to catch up on old work while the other half will be allotted for slowly easing into next year’s curriculum.

If you’re a little farther behind, however, you may need to extend how long your homeschool catch-up is going to take.

This method can work for anyone that is motivated, no matter how far behind you are — it just might take a little longer to get the end result you desire.

  • Create a Plan

Once you have your brain dump complete, it’s time to start the planning process!

Take that piece of paper, journal, or notebook that you wrote your notes on and give it a good look over.

If it’s sloppy and out of order, now is a great time to re-write it in a neater fashion if you wish.

I totally do this, but it’s definitely optional.

Creating a PLAN

Then, figure out a projected start and end date for your homeschool catch-up period — keeping in mind the amount of work that needs to be caught up on.

In other words, make sure you choose a realistic time frame for the work that needs to be completed.

Just remember, these dates are not set in stone and you can tweak them anytime during the process.

Picking start and end dates simply gives you a timeline to work with & goals to reach.

Next, figure out how many days or hours you want to work on homeschooling over the summer months and write it down!

Now, it’s officially time to finalize your plan.

  • Finalize Your Plan

If you’re only planning to work on lessons for 2 days each week and your child is behind an entire semester, will that really work out? Probably not.

I hate to say it, but now is the time for a little math.

Yup, I went there. Forgive me?

You’ve already got the list of lessons your children need to catch up on written down. Now is the perfect time to look them over and familiarize yourself with how many hours it’s actually going to take to finish those lessons.

Then, put it into writing.

Catch Up on Homeschooling Using Math

For example, my daughter is around 15 lessons behind in math.

So, if I squeeze in just 2 lessons each week, she will finish in early July.

This will leave the rest of July and the first half of August open for simple bookwork and easing into her new math curriculum.

If she were further behind, I would have just upped the amount to three lessons a week, or four, or five. Make sense?

Simply take your lessons, your start and end date, and the number of hours/days you plan on working each week to figure out a plan that will work best for your child.

Just make sure you allow flexibility to avoid overwhelm!

  • Follow Through

This is the hard part, you guys!

Once your plan is in place and you’ve successfully created a schedule for summer catch-up, now is the time to follow through.

Before acting on our plan, I actually took a week-long break from all formal lessons so I could get things in order and finalize my prep.

Then, I created activity packs for my kids to work on independently for that week — just to keep them a little busy!

With that said, staying consistent is the number one key to finishing out your summer successfully.

Which will then help you start your upcoming year on the right foot!

Planning Goals for the Week

To keep yourself on track, simply take a little time every weekend to look over the upcoming week.

Make sure things are still lining up and the past week’s lessons have been completed.

If you have older children, encourage them to help you in this area by making them responsible for tracking their own work!

Then, add in extra breaks to avoid any frustration and overwhelm.

Also, don’t stress if your catch-up period takes longer than you originally anticipated.

Sometimes, stretching it into the first semester of the new year is completely necessary!

Don’t overschedule yourself, plan lots of breaks, and keep on pushing forward!

Our Homeschool Catch-Up Plan

Prior to starting our homeschool catch-up plan, I took a week-long break from all formal lessons so I could get things in order and finalize my prep.

Then, I created activity packs for my kids to work on independently for that week — just to keep them a little busy!

Since we practice a 3-day homeschool week and almost do the year-round homeschooling thing anyway, I simply decided to bump our summer school up by a few weeks.

This way we could work on finishing out our current homeschool year without any additional stress.

Letting my kids be kids during the summer is incredibly important to me.

They need time to explore outside, swim for countless hours, and participate in fun summer activities.

Keeping Your Homeschool Caught Up

Staying caught up on homeschool lessons when life throws you curve balls can be tricky!

That’s why I utilize a simple homeschool block schedule and lean on our homeschool file folder system to stay on track!

With that said, summer homeschool planning and simple homeschool prep also play a big role in getting our homeschool year off to a smooth start.

Take your time, be patient with yourself and your kiddos, and keep moving forward!

Catch-up mode isn’t ideal, but sometimes it’s reality.

You’ve got this momma!

Enjoy this article? Take a moment to pin it for later or share it on social media with other struggling homeschool parents!

Summer Homeschool Catch Up

Meet the Author

Life & Homeschool Author

Hey guys! I’m Mary, homeschool mom of 3 amazing kiddos.

I’m so excited that you decided to check out my little corner of the world!

If you have been following our journey for any length of time, you already know that I’m obsessed with coffee, organization, and all things simple.

I’m also a huge dog lover and introvert 💗

My homeschool style is very eclectic.

I enjoy a solid mixture of structure and free range. I set goals for myself and my children each week, but I put no pressure on perfection.

We use a wide variety of curriculum in our home.

Some of our current favorites are The Good and the Beautiful, Life of Fred, Beautiful Feet Books, and Lifepac.

While my kids do spend a good amount of time learning at desks, they also spend countless hours exploring their creativity and practicing a little independence.

I love mountains, rainy days, and sitting by the campfire. 

Our family recently relocated to the PNW and we have been enjoying finding new nature spots to explore together 🙌🏼

I can’t wait to connect and share all the things I’ve learned on our new journey! 

Just a Note…

Thanks for checking out the homeschool mom helps portion of the blog! 

This is where you will find simple encouragement from a homeschool mom that has been there a time or two herself.

I hope you found this article helpful and come back to visit again soon!

Want to connect on social media?

You can find all of our social accounts below!

FacebookInstagramPinterest

Don’t forget to check out our Facebook group too!

This group is open to all homeschool moms.

Whether you are already knee-deep in your homeschool journey or just dipping your toes in — all homeschool moms are welcome!

Looking forward to connecting! Simply Be Wild & Free Life + Homeschool Blog

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Meet the Author

Life & Homeschool Author

Hey guys! I’m Mary, homeschool mom of 3 amazing kiddos.

I’m so excited that you decided to check out my little corner of the world!

If you have been following our journey for any length of time, you already know that I’m obsessed with coffee, organization, and all things simple.

I’m also a huge dog lover and introvert 💗

My homeschool style is very eclectic.

I enjoy a solid mixture of structure and free range. I set goals for myself and my children each week, but I put no pressure on perfection.

We use a wide variety of curriculum in our home.

Some of our current favorites are The Good and the Beautiful, Life of Fred, Beautiful Feet Books, and Lifepac.

While my kids do spend a good amount of time learning at desks, they also spend countless hours exploring their creativity and practicing a little independence.

I love mountains, rainy days, and sitting by the campfire. 

Our family recently relocated to the PNW and we have been enjoying finding new nature spots to explore together 🙌🏼

I can’t wait to connect and share all the things I’ve learned on our new journey! 

Just a Note…

Thanks for checking out the homeschool mom helps portion of the blog! 

This is where you will find simple encouragement from a homeschool mom that has been there a time or two herself.

I hope you found this article helpful and come back to visit again soon!

Want to connect on social media?

You can find all of our social accounts below!

FacebookInstagramPinterest

Don’t forget to check out our Facebook group too!

This group is open to all homeschool moms.

Whether you are already knee-deep in your homeschool journey or just dipping your toes in — all homeschool moms are welcome!

Looking forward to connecting! Simply Be Wild & Free Life + Homeschool Blog

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