A Day in the Life of a Home Schooling Mum

In case you missed it: Part 1 in the series – A Day in the Life of a Stay at Home Mum, Part 2 – A Day in the Life of a Work from Home Mum

I have always been curious about home schooling so when Charlene agreed to give me a glimpse into her day I rubbed my hands together in glee(not an exaggeration). Zee is Charlene’s daughter and a very cute contributing member to her blog High Heels and Fairy Tales. I love that there is structure to their day as well as the flexibility that comes with being a stay at home mum. With the crazy cost of school fees I may be looking into this more seriously soon…


04:20 – My bladder decides to play a fun game of “way too early alarm clock.” Eyes barely open, I head to the toilet to wee, silently moaning about the fact that it’s still “night time” and I can’t believe I need to wee right now. Ugh.

04:24 – Trying to fall asleep again – sleep is so precious to me; I turn, I don’t know how many times; I kick the duvet off; now I’m cold – duvet back on; why did I drink so much water last night 🙈; will I ever sleep again?

07:20 – Great I’ve overslept again… I race to the bathroom to brush my teeth. Zee’s just woken up too, so I tell her to ask daddy to help her brush her teeth (getting her toothbrush down from the cupboard, getting water for her to rinse – the tap water here isn’t safe – making sure her toothbrush is cleaned properly after, closed, and put away again) – this should stall him for a bit, while I cook the Jungle Oats.

07:40 – Shawn and Zee sit down for breakfast, and I carry on with Shawn’s lunch. I join them at the table after a few minutes.

08:03 – There are kisses and hugs, and Zee has wrapped herself around Shawn’s leg again, telling him that he’s only allowed to leave if he comes back in an hour. (She had only recently proposed that he consider working for her, as it would mean living his best life. 😂)

08:10 – I lock up once Zee concedes that Daddy has to go, then hit the shower while she watches an episode of Miles From Tomorrow.

8:30 – Time for school. She asks to start with Maths, so we spend an hour on that, then an hour on Literacy (English) afterwards. She reads a story from one of the new grade 3 reading books, before we take a break. My heart still swells with pride each time I listen to her read so beautifully, and I have a silent “how did you get so big my baby?” moments.

10:30 – Break time. Zee grabs a yoghurt from the fridge and I make a cup of Rooibos.

10:45 – We’re back at the table, and it’s time for some writing worksheets. There’s another exercise in her English workbook, before we move over to Life Skills.

12:45 – I’m so hungry now! It’s my fave part of school – lunch break! 😋

13:15 – We spend some time on Afrikaans. She wasn’t keen on the idea at first (can’t I learn French instead mommy?), but she’s enjoying it now. Something just clicked and she’s getting it, and now when her father comes home from work, she loves telling him about the things she learned in Afrikaans that day. 🙂

13:45 – School’s out! Zee hops on her scooter, and zooms around while I prepare what schoolwork we’re doing the next day.

14:00 – Zee’s playing, so I’m taking a breather before getting started on supper (read: sprawled on the couch, sneaking a piece of chocolate, catching up on emails and social media notifications).

14:45 – I have no idea how almost an hour went by. Zee’s asking what I’d like her to build for me with her Magformers. I ask for a castle, and she gets to it enthusiastically. She asks me to make something too, and seeing as I need to look at the book to make anything other than a little penguin, a penguin it is! I figure I should head to the kitchen, but decide to watch KC Undercover with Zee instead. And look at my phone some more. #bloglife

15:50 – Okay now I really do need to head to the kitchen. I had taken chicken out of the freezer earlier, so I get started on my favourite recipe by Mamma Chef Jozi – basil pesto and chicken pasta. It’s a really simple, quick dish to make, and it’s so yum. Zee comes by to ask if she can help, so I ask her to get the cherry tomatoes out of the fridge, and wash them.

16:45 – Zee’s just checked the time, and let’s me know excitedly that “daddy will be home soon!” We’re pretty much done, so the two of us relax for a bit while we wait for him. She asks if she can do something with my hair. I agree, and she starts curling and styling my hair, and let’s me know that it’s looking really good, and that tomorrow she can give me a facial if I like. 😊

17:20 – Shawn’s home. Yay! I dish up for everyone, and then we catch up on how the day went between bites.

18:15 – I notice that there are five recorded episodes of Masterchef Australia, so I decide to catch up. All three of us are fans, so no one complains… until the food starts looking really good, and then Shawn’s like, “we really need to remember to watch this WHILE we’re eating. Do we have anything sweet here?” Off he goes to the kitchen, only to return with chocolate and a packet of chips. 😋

19:10 – I tell Zee to get ready for a bath, to the response of “aww mom, now?” accompanied by the “but bath time is boring, and I just bathed yesterday” face. 🙈😂 I’m already filling the water, and she knows to follow me (albeit begrudgingly). As is the case everyday, within seconds of getting into the bathtub, she’s chatting happily and giggling (insert tired mom sigh + eye roll).

19:30 – Bathed, dried, lotioned, powdered, and dressed in pjs, Zee skips to the lounge, gets onto the couch next to Shawn and tells him to “smell how fresh I am.” I leave them in the lounge and go to the kitchen to put the leftover food in the fridge, and pack the dishwasher.

19:45 – Shawn’s discovered a new game, and they’re both glued to the phone trying to figure it out. I check my phone again, and attempt to catch up on a WhatsApp group chat and check Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter at the same time, with an episode of Tangled as background music. Clearly winning at multitasking here.

20:45 – I want to shower, so Shawn goes to the room with Zee for a bedtime story. She’s hugging me now, and says goodnight “in case I’m asleep by the time you’re done mommy.” Once I’m out of the shower, and head to the room, it’s clear she’s still wide awake, and chatting dad’s ear off.

21:20 – Zee’s out, and I start working on a blog post while Shawn goes to shower. Once he’s done, I put the iPad away and we chat and then decide to check what’s on Catch Up. There are so many series we try to keep up with, but it rarely works out. #parentproblems

23:50 – I’m beat, I’m calling it a day. Shawn’s grabbing his laptop out of the bag though. He’s going to work now, despite my “leave it, you can do that during the day tomorrow” protests. He says tomorrow is another hectic day, so he may as well sort this out now. I kiss him goodnight, then head to the kitchen for a big glass of water before I go to bed. Some people never learn.

I’ve been a homeschooling mom for four years now. We started in grade R, and she’s in grade 3 this year. I love that I’m able to give her individual attention; that I get to see firsthand how she learns and understands new things; that I never miss a thing; and of course no school drop-offs and pick-ups, which means I get to wear pjs all day most days. 😂

More importantly, I love that Zee’s enjoying it; that she doesn’t feel as if she’s missing out on “real school”; and that she’s become the friendliest, kindest, funniest little person who converses easily and happily with littles and adults (despite the “how ever will you socialize her if she’s homeschooled?” concerns of some 😉). There are difficult days, obvs. I mean, she’s a child and there are some days when she’d rather be on her scooter all day, taking breaks only to play with her toys, or to eat. On those days, she may be in distracted, go-slow mode, and I’ve got to be super patient, which isn’t something I’m always great at. Still, I can’t imagine having it any other way. 😊

Besides their really fun blog, you can keep up with Charlene and Zee on the following social media accounts:





16 thoughts on “A Day in the Life of a Home Schooling Mum

  1. Really loving this series, Nadia 🙂

    A question for Charlene: what made you decide to homeschool?

    I have an almost-1 year old and another on the way and the idea has always been at the back of my mind, but I’ll have to start thinking about it seriously quite soon.

    Is it common here in SA?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey Kirsten. I think I subconsciously made the decision while I was still pregnant. And I remember speaking to Shawn about it when Zee was still quite little, but we didn’t make an official decision. She was two and a half when she started ballet lessons, and I met a mom there who’s still a good friend – she was homeschooling her girls (and would go on to homeschool her little boy too once he was older), and I told her that I liked the idea, and it was the first time someone was so positive in response to my thoughts/questions. I figured if she could do it with three kids, I’d be able to at least give it a try with my one little person. There were many factors we considered – safety and bullies at school being two of the big ones. And it’s really worked out nicely for us. Oh and Nadia, in line with what you mentioned – it’s way more affordable than regular school fees, so there’s that too. 😊
      I realize now I’ve just written a comment as long as the post! 😂🙈

      Liked by 2 people

      1. She never has. And it’s something I do make sure to ask her every now and then, just in case her feelings on it have changed. And I can see she’s happy – happy to learn, happy to be home and be comfortable and free, and do school without a T-shirt in if she feels like it, or sleep in on those days that little growing body is extra tired. And my mind is at ease too, knowing she’s safe.
        How old is your eldest now?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ah I really feel for her, and for you having to see her go through that. Little girls can be mean, not so little girls too. I went through a really tough time with some girls in primary school and in the first two years of high school. Emotional bullying is just as painful, and it’s not something I ever wanted my child to experience. I know we can’t protect them forever and from everything, but we can teach them to be strong and not to be naive even right here in our own homes.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a really great insight into what it’s like to homeschool. I know so many people (especially in blogging circles) who rave about homeschooling and what a lovely balance it brings to life. It sounds like you’ve got a great set-up here (plus Miles From Tomorrow is a favourite of my girls too!).

    And congratulations because someone loved this post so much, they added it to the BlogCrush linky! Feel free to collect your “I’ve been featured” blog badge 🙂 #blogcrush

    Liked by 1 person

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