Homeschooling and Rotating Shift Work

Homeschooling and Rotating Shift Work | @SweetPhenomena | #Homeschooling #HomeschoolScheduling

Last year I wrote a post about homeschooling while also dealing with a rotating shift work schedule.  It contained links to other posts that touched on this unique situation as well.

You see, if you have a family member that works this type of schedule, you have a unique set of circumstances.  Your week isn’t divided into weekdays and weekends.

I outlined Vince’s schedule in that post, but I’ll explain it again here:

4 days of 12 hour nights
3 days off
3 days of 12 hour days
1 day off
3 days of 12 hour nights
3 days off
4 days of 12 hour days
7 days off

After the 7 days off, you repeat from the top.

This type of schedule can be good for several things, like Daddy being home during the week at times.  If there’s a field trip, appointment, or some other event that necessitates Daddy, we’ve got him.

It also means that if we want to have family time, we can’t do school Monday through Friday, taking off Saturday and Sunday.

I tried to fight it for the longest time; I felt school had to be done Monday through Friday.  Once I let go, things really started falling into place.

I’m a visual learner, so I wanted to revisit how I work this type of schedule into our homeschool.

Once you consider field trips, baking projects, reading, and plenty of other learning opportunities, we’re well over 165 school days for the year.

I’d like to take a moment to touch on something:  we decided to school year-round so that our school days were able to match up nicely to my husband’s work days.  If we tried to do fewer months, we’d need to do more school days per month, meaning we wouldn’t be “off” when my husband was off.

That’s a sacrifice we chose to make.  We also like to take the month of December off.

The month above is a bit different than normal because they have an adjustment for work that needed to be done.

You might need to do more documentable school days?  Is the number of school days each month more than what your family member will be working?

That’s OK!  The focus of this type of homeschool scheduling is not fitting it all together perfectly, but striving to do as much of your schoolwork during their work times as possible.

This way, the family doesn’t feel like they’re giving up family time.  The family member working those hours feels like they can actually be a part of the family during their time off.

I find that by outlining school days in this manner, I know what days are non-negotiable.  I build everything else from this foundation:  field trips, errands, extracurriculars, etc.

It’s not easy, and it takes a bit of playing around with a schedule, but it can be done.  And I promise you, once you’ve made it work for your family, things will start to feel a bit more natural.

How do you deal with “strange” schedules in your homeschool?


Sweet Giveaway: TimeDog

Time Dog

Yay!!!  It’s a giveaway!

It’s been a while since we’ve done a giveaway here on Sweet Phenomena, so it’s about time I give some stuff away!

Remember my review of TimeDog?

Remember how I *heart* them?

Well, now you get a chance to *heart* them too!

TimeDog has graciously agreed to give away TWO 60 day subscriptions to you lovely folks!


Trust me, you need this.  You’ll love it.  You’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.


Walk a Mile in Her Shoes

Sweet Cause: Domestic Violence Awareness

Sweet Cause:  Domestic Violence Awareness

Domestic violence is one of those things that folks don’t like to talk about.

Many people would choose to converse about politics or religion before discussing it.

Creative measures generally draw more of a crowd than sheer talk.

This is why I fell in love with this:  Walk a Mile in Her Shoes ®.

Just take a look at this:

Guys. In heels. Walking to stop violence against women.

They strive to bring awareness to the causes and effects of violence against women.  Win.

I love that men are participating.  Women and children march as well, but I think there’s something to be said for the men’s participation.

How often do we associate abusers with men?

How often do we associate the victim with women?

How often do we focus on the victim, the end result, without focusing on the perpetrator?

Doesn’t it make sense to address the problem, instead of always trying to put a band-aid fix on the aftermath?

This program was created by Frank Baird with a handful of men prancing around a park.

The idea quickly caught on, and these marches have been taking place since 2001.

I would love to participate in a walk, but there are none happening in AL any time soon.  I may get one started, although the idea does terrify me just a bit. Can’t do it as a one-woman show…

Either way, it only costs $125 to get the “rights” to hold a march, which is a steal if you ask me.  If a walk is organized by a military group, Native Americans or Canadian First People, or anyone in any African nation, it is free to register.

I love that the organization gives you all you need to make the walk a success: steps to take, ideas, and they even sell “official” red pumps.

Can’t walk but want to donate?  You can do that here.

You can also take a look at this calendar and see where walks are scheduled for the next few months.

What about you: would you like to participate in a march?

True Confessions:  I was not asked to write this content.  I found a picture from one of the events online and looked into it myself.  I think it’s a great thing, though, and wanted to share it!

August was Stellar


In my life this week…

This week was kind of a blur.  I believe I spent part of it continuing to work on my new site.

I also continued reading The Year of Living Dangerously: Adventures in Homeschooling.  I am in love with this book.  It’s hysterical and actually has quite a bit of information about homeschooling that I’ve never known.

Oh, and then there was Family Game Night.  So. Much. Fun.

We purchased Wits and Wagers Family and let me tell you, that is a fun game.  If you have a family game night, it’s a great choice.

It appeals to a wide variety of ages, it’s fun, and it’s quick.  We played three times that night.

In our homeschool this week…

We wrapped up this year’s first month of homeschooling this week.  I have to say, fourth times a charm.  At least for us.

This is our fourth year homeschooling, and this was the most successful first month we’ve ever had.

We pretty much finished everything we needed to, and Babydoll couldn’t stop going on and on about how fun school is.

Score one for the mommy.

Questions/thoughts I have…

Can I really create my own archaeology curriculum for the year?  Can I really do an archaeological dig with Babydoll?

Sure, I’ve got the help of a book, but I really wonder if I’m cut out for this…

Either way, we get started this month.

I’m cooking…

Well, I’m not cooking this right now, but I’m on a quest for the best short ribs recipe ever.

The braised ones at Cafe Dupont were delish, and I must make them!

A quote to share…

I believe in everything until it’s disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it’s in your mind. Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now? – John Lennon

Sweet Critique: Seventeen Magazine’s Ultimate Guide to Beauty


I am so not a girly girl.  I like pink, and I like glitter, and I like sparkly stuff, but I don’t wear makeup and I rarely do my hair.

My mother never really taught me how to do any of that.  And that’s not a dig at my mother; I never asked about any of it.

I just wasn’t interested.  So here I sit, at 31, without a clue as to how to do anything other than straighten my hair, put mascara and lip gloss on, and maybe throw a hairband in.

This is one of the reasons I agreed to review Seventeen Magazine’s Ultimate Guide to Beauty.

The other?

If I can’t do it, how in the world will I ever teach my daughter how to do it?

Because really, I’m not anywhere near 17…

I like how the editors of Seventeen have broken down the components into hair, makeup, resources for care of skin, nails, etc.

Also a fave? The gratuitous use of pink throughout the book.

The makeup seemed a bit heavy-handed to me, but you have to take that with a grain of salt {points to the comment about my makeup usage above}.  There was quite a variety of looks, though, which I can imagine is a teenage girl’s dream.

The hair section really shined.  I think hairstyles are something that can apply to a wider audience, as far as age goes, and Babydoll has been tearing up that section of the book.  She enjoys playing around and doing the various hairstyles.

And then there are the sections that have practical information, like how to master the manicure.

Overall, I think this is a great guide to have around if you have teenage daughters.  If “celebrity” bothers you, the pictures of a variety of female celebrities {to illustrate certain looks} might be a bit bothersome to you, although it’s nothing excessive in my opinion.  I do totally heart the fact that Seventeen also included “real” girls, in all shapes, sizes, and hues.  Gold stars for them.

I definitely learned a ton from the guide, and feel much better about Babydoll entering the teen years.  I think the book will be well-worn from use…

True Confessions:  I was provided with a review copy of this book.  All opinions are my own.