There are summer schedules all over the internet. I have seen some that are general themed days, some that very structured hourly schedules, and others that fall somewhere in between. I have not found a summer schedule yet that worked for my family. That is why I created one myself!
I like to have a good balance of structure and free time during summer break. I want my kids to be able to relax and have fun. But I don’t want them to forget what they learned through the school year. Of course there are chores to be done as well. They don’t get a pass on that! We needed a schedule that was flexible too, for when we may go on trips or visit friends and family. I don’t think I’m alone in wanting this balance for my kids, which is why I decided to share our schedule with you!
Wake up – 10am: Breakfast and free play
From the time my kids wake up in the morning until 10am they are only required to get a breakfast, and then have some fun. I don’t have a set time I wake them up during the week. If they want to get up at 7am and start playing, have fun. Or if they want to sleep in until 9:30am, that’s great too. One thing I always loved about summer as a kid was getting to sleep in! So I want my kids to have that opportunity as well. As far as what they have for breakfast, I always keep eggs, bagels, bread, yogurt, fruit and cereal in the house, so they have their pick of whichever typical breakfast food they want.
10 – 11am: Learning/ Homework time
Homework time is very important to our summer schedule. It’s not my kids’ favorite hour of they day, but they don’t put up much of a fight over it. What they work on changes daily, and may include their Bible verses, reading time, worksheets their school sent home, online learning websites, and other learning games. It may even include doing some arts and crafts! Basically anything that will keep their brains engaged.
11am – 12pm: Housework time
Everyone in the home has their part to do in keeping the house in order. During this hour is when most of the work I expect my kids to do will be done. Their jobs include things like picking up their rooms, folding their laundry and putting it away, picking up sticks in the yard and putting them in the fire pit, and so on. I know what each of them are capable of and I’m not asking them to do more than that. I do want them to have some responsibilities and to learn how to take care of a home.
12 – 12:30pm: Lunch
This one is pretty self explanitory! And one your kids are not likely to let you forget!
12:30 – 1:30pm: Outside time
I am very blessed to live in a quiet neighborhood and have a fenced in yard so my kids have a safe place to play outside. They can play in our huge sandbox, on the swing set, with their baseballs and mitts, or with the dog. There are water play options, like the sprinklers, a water blob, squirt guns, and I will fill up water balloons for them sometimes. My kids can draw with sidewalk chalk, blow bubbles, or jump rope. They can also ride on their battery powered quads or ride their bikes. I may even take them to a local park or beach. The possibilities are nearly endless! So there is no reason, except for bad weather, for them to be inside all day.
1:30 – 3pm: Nap/ quiet time
When it gets to about 1:30pm, the youngest King is ready for a nap! Which means that my older kids need to have some quiet time so they don’t wake him up. That makes it a good time for them to get their screen time. I strongly believe screen time should be limited for all of us, but especially kids, so they are given 1 hour to be on the computer, tablet, TV or video games. Some days we won’t have screen time at all. When they aren’t on the screens, my big kids can have more outside time, read, build with Legos, draw or color, take a nap if they want, play cards together, or anything else they can do quietly.
3-6pm: Snack and Free Play
Right around 3pm my kids are ready for a small snack. Then the noise restriction is gone and they can just have fun. My kids can build a blanket fort, play a board game, go back outside, race their hot wheels cars, play school or dentist office or restaurant, or most anything else they want! Some days we may use this time to go to the library, have a play date, visit the local museum, or go on other quick trips.
6 – 6:30pm: Dinner
Again, pretty self explanatory. By this time my husband is usually home from work and we all sit down to a meal together.
6:30 – 8pm: Family Time
Spending time together as a family is important. Another great part about summer is that its easier to carve out that time to spend together. Some ways we spend time together are going on bike rides, playing board games, going out for ice cream, or watching a movie together. We know that it is important for us to get one-on-one time with each of our kids too, so we will split up like that some nights too. It can be difficult to get ideas for that, so I’ll give you some examples. My daughter and I may work on a craft together, just the two of us, making bath bombs or bracelets. My husband might have my older son help him work on his truck, handing him tools and teaching him about it.
8 – 9pm: Bath time
Usually I don’t give my kids a bath every day. Especially my daughter, because her skin can be sensitive. But in the summer, after playing in the sand and putting on sunscreen and being sweaty, they need one most every night. My kids love playing in the tub with boats, bath tub paints, and bubbles. These items can easily be used to bring some extra learning time to bath time. They can do math by adding and subtracting boats, or practice writing and spelling with the bath paints or crayons.
9 – 9:30pm: Bed time routine
Our bed time routine is simple. Put on pajamas, brush teeth, a few minutes of reading, and then prayers.
9:30pm: Bed time
Now, this time is actually pretty flexible. Sometimes we will let them stay up until 10pm during the summer if we have something going on. I just like to have a certain time established to go by most of the time.
That’s it! That is the schedule I have set for my home this summer. Here is that free printable I mentioned in the graphic!
It will make a good visual for when your kids want to know what is coming next. It may also be helpful to set a timer during certain parts of the day. During housework time you could have them try to get their play room or bedroom clean before the timer goes off. Or setting a timer during a screen time prevents the argument about how long they were actually on.
Is this the kind of summer schedule you have been looking for? What is your bedtime routine like? Let me know in the comments!