Homeschooling Day in the Life: September, Veteran Homeschooling Mom, Grandmother, Homeschool Co-op Director, and Author

Day in the Life September

A homeschool day in the life looks different almost every day, right? Over on our Instagram page, we love to give you a peek into lots of homeschool days regardless of how they change day to day.

Today, we’re going to give you a peek into the homeschool day in the life of September, veteran homeschooling mom, grandmother, homeschool co-op director, and author!

We can all learn and be inspired by one another, regardless of our homeschool approach. It’s not about looking good for social media, it’s about the connection going on inside our homeschool walls and sharing with others what works for us.We might all homeschool a little differently, but we can always look for ideas from each other that inspire, encourage and equip us in our own homeschool days. So each week we create blog posts for you to access later of each of those “days in the life”. We hope you keep coming back for more inspiration. Keep going, mama! These days at home are so worth it!

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Meet September

Meet September

September McCarthy @septemberanne has been married to her husband Dan for 34 years. Together they have ten children and eleven grandchildren. They have been homeschooling their children for 26 years, and have launched six arrows, with four still at home.

September holds no claim on having it all together, and speaks with a voice and heart of encouragement and hope to families. Her passions are for raising kids who love to learn and helping families homeschool well.

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September is the author of {Why} Motherhood Matters, with Harvest House Publishers. She directs a large Homeschool Cooperative in NYS and continues to share her heart and passion for teaching from home and raising arrows for the Lord. While writing and teaching, September also Co-hosts a Generational Podcast, Mom to Mom Podcast, with Kate Battistelli and Jamie Erickson.

September lives a rural life, with her growing family, chickens, gardening, shelves overflowing with books and a passion to live present in her calling to share the gospel in her every day. Her family is her #1 priority and her heart is always at home. She believes in new mercies every day and fresh grace on everyone she meets.

Good Morning!

good morning September

Hello everyone! I’m September at @septemberanne and I’m super excited to be joining you all here @learningwell community today! My username is also my actual name and that’s always the number one question after someone meets me.

My homeschool day today finds me at work- with my own kids-and 120 other homeschooling students- and you can follow me here as I share my 26 year journey of homeschooling and where and what we’re doing now! I’m a mom to ten kids, married for 34 years and now have eleven grandchildren-and we are STILL homeschooling!

I’m so passionate about learning well- literally- and our time here today will focus on how we bring creative and contagious learning to our homeschool!

Variety in Homeschooling

Variety in homeschooling September

Have you ever told yourself you weren’t going to use a certain curriculum or try a new path in homeschooling? And then, you find yourself trying or doing that very thing? Yep, right here! That’s me.

I began homeschooling in the “dark ages,” when there weren’t amazing communities like this one or choices and options to look at, consider or even think about. Look how far we’ve come!

Two days a week, I direct a hybrid homeschool center and on a third day a week, I direct a separate homeschool cooperative that I began when my oldest kiddos were little and I was a “desperate for something new mama.”

My remaining “homeschooling,” two days at home are filled with our old style homeschool routine and housework, family time, grandparenting, ministry and my work.

This is a homeschool schedule and approach I never saw coming, but would have honestly been so grateful for when I had multiple grades and ages at home over the last thirty years in this journey. What a blessing the options we all have before us today in the homeschool world!

I have used many different curriculums over the years. Different methods changed my style of teaching and learning for each of our ten children. I have a great passion for how we can use so many different approaches in “one,” homeschool to achieve one outcome: To teach and love our children well and in the way in which “they have been uniquely created to learn.”

Homeschooling Multiple Ages

Homeschooling multiple ages

Do you homeschool multiple children and different ages? This was my (our) story for many years and I discovered that as a homeschooling mom-we also learn right along with our children. It took me quite a few years to figure out a few integral survival points and a few additional years to feel the pieces to the puzzle come together.

Some days, I celebrated the huge wins and some days I counted what I saw as losses. But, here’s the thing about homeschooling: every day is full of wins and the other days – that’s part of the learning process for us all.

Here are a few things that helped me homeschool multiple grades and ages and perhaps your home will find these to be helpful also:

  • Rotate your time with each child
  • Group together subject learning for history, sciences and other hands on projects
  • Incorporate different learning stations and styles into your day per student and subject
  • Work your daily home and school into a grid of 4: household responsibilities, academic independent work, group learning and a buddy system
  • Create a list of daily goals and expectations and fit them into the four areas of rotation
  • Don’t separate home and school: make them overlap to have a continual cycle of learning and progress
  • Not every subject needs to be done every day
  • Identify each child’s trickiest learning area and focus 1:1 with them first. Use multiple learning approaches to achieve their best learning outcome

I’ve realized again how passionate I become about this area of homeschooling. The list of things I have done to help me grow as a homeschool parent could be endless.

Homeschooling High School

Homeschooling High School

The relationship between mothers and teens is a work of worth. Adding homeschooling into the mix can be tricky, rewarding and downright-hard- intentional-work. So, how do YOU do this?

For our home, I realized quickly that I wasn’t truly capable to know “all the things,” all the subjects, materials, or even have the time to put into studying every subject to teach it well. I wanted my high schoolers “ready for the next steps,” and those are the most thoughts swirling around in the minds of any homeschooling mama of high schoolers.

Here are a few things that have helped me homeschool my high schoolers:

  • Define a goal and plan for each of my high schoolers by 9th grade. Obviously, this plan will pivot, take wide turns and may have a different outcome then we “planned”. However, getting them on the right track of requirements, courses is important to do now.
  • Get the mandatory courses out of the way sooner than later and use the last year or two to focus on individual goals, training, higher education, apprenticeships and life skills.
  • Get the mandatory courses out of the way sooner than later and use the last year or two to focus on individual goals, training, higher education, apprenticeships and life skills.
  • Stay focused on character, the heart and your relationship – these years can be heavy with work and so many life skills and worldly demands to enter the workforce, graduation requirements, education, social groups and more can demand and take a toll on their quiet and quality time at home and forging a positive path now makes a huge difference.
  • Map out their credits and decide if you will teach all their subjects.
  • Give your high schoolers a realistic view of expectations daily, monthly and for the year of school they are currently in. This helps with the overwhelm, helps define expectations and give them a goal.
  • Get them out of the house.
  • Let them have a job.
  • Help them get organized and teach them life skills and ownership of their work.
  • Check their work. Sometimes, we are overwhelmed by the time our students are homeschooling in high-school; don’t stop being their teacher.

This is Homeschooling

I can remember the very first day I homeschooled like it was yesterday. It’s an imprint on my heart and mind. I can remember how I set up a tiny room in our rental trailer. I used a coffee table for a desk and had gone thrifting to find special items to make the room feel“schoolish .”

My oldest was four and his little sister was only 14 months younger. It was fun, exciting and we had a great first day. I stood at a chalkboard hung on the small area of wall and I wrote my sons name on the board. I taught from the front of this tiny room and we made a whole day of it.

Fast forward through the years of homeschooling at dining room tables, bedrooms when I was sick, libraries and mini-vans during sports or piano, ballet or voice lessons. Between raised voices, tears of reading struggles, frustration over a lack of diligence or a consumption of my time and days… we made it to today.

A day where I look back and remember the wins and not the losses. The victories and the investment. The six adults that are living their best life and I know how much they learned here in the crook of our home(schooling.) It’s worth it. The academics, the character building, the time, the tears and even the complaints every mom that chooses this route may hear.

Would I have changed some things? You betcha. But sometimes those things you wish you could go back and change are the very things which have made who you and your children are today. ❤️ Three more kiddos to go!!!! 26 years in and 8 more years to call it a wrap! Homeschooling is sanctifying. It all looks different- but, it’s ALL homeschooling.


Day in the Life September

If you want to see more Day in the Life photos and videos, be sure to check out our Instagram profile. There are highlights of each takeover at the top.

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