A while back, I polled a bunch of large family mamas on how they have made it easier to get through their long list of responsibilities...in this case HOMESCHOOLING. This is the long list of their responses! Do you have something to add? Comment, and I'll add it to this list!
Homeschool year-round. Take breaks when needed and without guilt!
Don't do school at home, but HOMESCHOOL. BIG difference!
Make a schedule and stick to it.
Record who studied/read what for what credit, so that you can have ideas to go by with the ones to follow.
Keep littles and babies occupied, coloring, blocks, learning videos, so you can focus on teaching big kids.
Rotate big kids to read a book or spend time with the younger ones while you have one in one instruction time with older kids.
Self-teaching curriculum! If they can read, they can - and should know how to - teach themselves.
Take time to plan. Make as much food ahead as possible. Don't answer or screen phone calls. Use a timer.
Give each kid his or her own drawer to keep all of their books in and we do school year-round.
Teach every child to do at least some of their seatwork/computer work on their own, by the time they learn to read.
Utilize DVD's and YouTube videos to compliment what you're studying.
Play GAMES! Board games are preferred, but online can be useful...just not as socially stimulating
Check out cook books from the library for the country you are studying. Next week we will be cooking Japanese food!
Lesson plan in erasable ink!
I gather my planning materials and sneak away for a couple hours and plan the next week somewhere where I can grab a cup of coffee and concentrate.
I spend alone time with coffee Sundays preparing while my family has reading time. I do write it in old fashioned pencil in my planner. daily we write assignments for our kids on a dry erase board so they know what work is expected to be completed that day. We try to stick to the same patterns of work: English, math, history in the morning (when they are fresh and ready to learn)!
I like using electronic help: www.spellingcity.com (grades and tests, super fun), www.grammarlogues.com grades and teaches grammar (use this as a supplement for what we do), homeschool tracker (electronic planner for many ages), mathusee (dvd, online worksheet generator to give lots of help), www.bigoven.com which organizes groceries by aisles and doubles recipes, etc., electronic apps on phone to organize spending and budget, etc. (the ones that I can think of off the top of my head).