Friday, October 10, 2014

Sleeping In - A HomeSchooling Working Momma's Advantage

See this little guy? Speed Racer? Yeah  - him. He is an insomniac that truly requires 10-12 hours sleep.


When people ask me about homeschooling my kids - and pulling it off while working - they assume I wake these kiddos up early to get school done.

They sleep in.

Hubba sleeps in.

Although, that wasn't the plan originally. Hubba was supposed to wake the kids up at 7:30am, get them fed and start instruction at 8am. Didn't happen.

Why? Well because my Hubba is a night owl. Always has been. He would stay up until 4am-5am in the morning, watching TV or playing video games for as long as I've known him (and I've known him since he was 15yrs old). His family even told stories of how he would stay up until the TV went off with his grandfather.


So why would I think my kids would be different? So...Speed Racer's sleeping patterns is a most like his father's.

Tiger Lilly is my earlier riser, she typically goes to bed around 1-2am and wakes up at 10am (she sets her clock so she can eat and get started on her work in peace before Speed Racer gets up."


For Speed Racer, his sister Tiger Lilly wakes him up at 12pm. Yep, you heard me correctly - 12pm in the afternoon.


This ability to go to bed at a natural time and wake up at a later time has been a MAJOR slice of improvement in Speed Racer's general mood and behavior.

It wasn't until I'd actually compared his current behavior with his grumpiness when he was in traditional school that I noticed the change.

Now don't get me wrong, he's still a typical Tween with challenges we have to work on, but his general mood about and response is more positive because - he gets proper sleep now.


Report Card time! Yep, I create report cards for the kids at the end of each quarter so that they know how they faired. AND the tell me - momma and hubba what we need to do to improve their learning in their hardest subjects.

This week was a breeze! Why?

Hubba is back teaching evenings! Woot! That means that I am getting to bed by 10pm each night and a lot more is getting done.

Older sister Rose administered school one day this week which helped me to catch up on rest.

Speed Racer 6th Grader

He is really loving Spelling You See and Sequential Spelling as his new core spelling program. We are still going over and typing the Abeka spelling words into SpellingCity for fun but I am not testing him on the words yet.

SandiegoScribblers: It's turning out to be too much for Speed Racer. We are falling behind in this class and having to do it on the weekends. He is requiring a lot of help with this one.

Spanish we are using Mango Languages and learning words & phrases.

The Arts, we are still reading through our book A Child's Introduction to Art: The World's Greatest Paintings and Sculptures and using for free drawing.

Math Lab we had to take a step back in Teaching Textbooks and are reviewing Fractions since Speed Racer isn't doing well with it. We are using for extra practice.

Technology is going great. has proven to be a full program for Speed Racer and he still is working on it (he started mid summer). However, he has his eye on Mod design. - is really improving his typing skills. He does 10 min of this a day and doesn't complain too much about it.

All other classes (Bible, Reading, Language, Penmanship, History and Science) he's doing with Abeka DVD and getting A's and B's - Woot!

Tiger Lilly Blended High Schooler

PSAT test planned for next week Wed (10/15) at the local high school. She will not be studying for this. I am hoping that all her CLEP prep and math + logic skills will help her.

CLEP review for English COMPOSITION CLEP is going well. She is reviewing the InstantCert flashcards, using for grammar drills, and taking sample test with Peterson and REA. Her test scores this week were: 21 (REA) Day 1, 32 (Peterson) Day 3, and 42 (Peterson) Day 5.  The goal is to get to 55% or higher by her test date 10/27.

Japanese: She is going over the curriculum I created for her last year that is composed of Youtube Videos, Writing 1 time a week in the notebook the letter of the week I give her. Also using Mango Languages for voice play practice.

Python and Java Programming: She works on both daily but loves her Landry Academy class and uses daily for practice. She got a A on 2 of her programming projects with Landry in Python. Also, she's finishing up Mod Design in a few weeks and I'll start her on

Critical Thinking & Logic: with Currclick is also one of her favorite classes. She creates these little movie like clips for her homework and works with other kids in the class. She's at a high B in this class.

Algebra 2 - Problems! with Factoring. She forgot what she learned in Algebra 1. So to Youtube we went. Found a great video that broke down factoring of squares. She failed her Algebra 2 test with Abeka and we called the teacher who walked her through her notes and worked out a problem with her. I let her retake the test and she scored a 90%

Physics and Chemistry - She is doing well in both of these and likes the Abeka DVD experiments the most. She walked me through some of the easy ones to explain her labs.

Humanities - She's just watching the Education-Portal videos on this. She's enjoying them for a soft prep.

American Gov't, US History and Economics - are all going well. She's liking taking them together and seeing the full perspective on history. However, when we get to 1877 in US History we will stop and focus on studying for the CLEP for US History 1 and switch from Abeka to Education-Portal. and - She works on these combined about 3 days a week. She likes them both but for different reasons. The WriteGuide is for her Analysis of Literature to prepare her for that Clep and the Time4Writing is more grammar mechanics based so to her it's a full class. Both of these end at the end of October and she will be starting another writing program.


Meals. Totally behind the 8-ball this week since we traveled over the weekend. So Monday we had a microwave heat up meal that wasn't too popular. Tuesday I dashed out to the grocery store and we had great meals on Tue-Thu and Friday is Chinese.

Cleaning. We are saving all cleaning for everyone except the kitchen for Saturday. Hubba is feeling better and can help out now.

Work & Life Balance. This went well this week. The day gig is very flexible (except Monday I had to work late which is why Rose helping out was great). However, my side business had a deadline due that kept me up some nights working on. But it's a good diversion from homeschooling.

Lesson Planning. Again this week I only got 1 week of lesson plans done - BUT, the day gig gives me holiday's off so I hope to catch up next Monday. The block schedule is working out great though!

Rest. Back on schedule and I got 6 hours sleep on Mon night (also a quick nap that day since I had my home helper over). Tue I snuck in a 30 min power nap, then got 6 hours sleep that night. Wed and Thursday were great! Friday I wanted to crash. Even though the kids have activities on Saturday morning, I have cancelled them to allow myself and them Saturday mornings to sleep in.


  1. Sounds like a great week :) Have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Oh my goodness, 6 hours of sleep. I feel your pain! I work at night, go to bed at 3 AM, then start school at 9 AM. Thank goodness for naps and coffee, right?

  3. LOVED reading about your family's sleep habits! We don't sleep in quite as late your kiddos (I would if they would let me, lol!), but we do sleep late. And we are always met with the "what about when they are grown and have to wake up early in the real world" questions. Gah.

    My high schooler's schedule isn't so scheduled. He does Time4Learning and some outside work on Duolingo and some different resource books. He completed a mechanics course with Time4Writing a while back and really enjoyed it. I am hoping to squeeze in an essay writing course with T4W again soon.

    I have a 5th grader who wants to improve his typing skills. I don't know why, he can type as fast as I can (techno-junkies, we are), but he wants to, lol. I will look into TypingWeb! :)

    New to your blog, and really enjoyed this post! Thanks!

  4. It was so nice to finally hear that we are not the only ones who are night owls ;)
    My husband is the early riser in our house, but for myself, I have always been a night owl. Even as a child I would stay up to 1-2 am, before dragging myself out of bed at 7am for school. To this day, I have a hard time going to sleep before 1-2 am at the earliest, no matter how tired I am. Something about the night, just gives me more energy. My children are split on this. My oldest, she is like her dad. She goes to sleep easy and can wake early with no problem. My youngest, however, has always been like me. I still remember sleeping in till 9-10am when he was just an infant ( to me this is late for a baby, considering my daughter would have me up at 6am!).
    For us, our typical morning wake up time, unless we have to go somewhere early, is 10am. My son and I could sleep later but I find if I let myself, then I am up till 4-5am

    ~>We also use Spelling City in our homeschooling and have used Time4Writing too. So far my oldest has only taken the middle school mechanics course, but we plan on having her start the middle school writing enhancement soon. O'and thank you for sharing that free art program. Both of my kids love to draw, so I will be checking that out for them ;)

    Great blog post, loved reading it!

  5. I can't tell you how nice it is to hear that my family is not the only night owl homeschoolers out there! My son with special needs does go to bed between 8:30 and 9 but he needs the extra sleep and will sleep till 8 and then play/read in his room until I get up. I've had MAJOR guilt with my daughter as at 13 her bedtime is at 10...which I think is very generous. BUT, she is never in bed before 11. I'll be downstairs watching Netflix with my hubby and I can hear her playing the violin still at 10:30 LOL! With her though she does not sleep in!! She wakes up before us at about 7 and does most of her Time4Learning or other computer curriculum before I even wake up. She doesn't get enough sleep. Hubby and I go to bed between 12 and 2 and we have been trying to wake up at 8:30....but on occasion it is 10. I'm also not ashamed to say I take daily naps to make up for it! ;) I enjoyed reading your post!

  6. Your children are so blessed having a mum who lets them sleep on the schedule that works best for them. You are doing a fantastic job. I am a big fan of power naps too!