Lazy Genius Your Homeschool–Principle #5: Build the Right Routines

Kendra Adachi says that “routines are onramps to somewhere else, not destinations themselves.” This is counter to so much that we hear about building routines. There’s always a bit of magical thinking involved when people talk about routines: if you build it, they will come. But not a lot of thought about what exactly it is that’s coming!

Mysterious pink flowers that were everywhere in Lodi, California

To Lazy Genius our homeschool, we are going to make one simple switch–curriculum for routine. If you think about it, curriculum is the queen of routines. When you say we’re doing math, most likely that involves working through a printed resource on a daily basis. The biggest routine most homeschoolers have is their curriculum. It’s the onramp to the destination called education or schooling. It’s what gets us where we want to be. But it’s so easy for that onramp to become the worse kind of backseat driver, shouting barely intelligible directions about the turn we just missed.

Newsflash! When a chosen curriculum stops serving our ends, then it’s time to make adjustments. Most often I think this happens in pacing and scope. Curriculum is written for some abstract 4th grader. A 4th grader who is ready to move at a certain pace over a certain number of days. But 4th graders don’t exist in the abstract. The person that actually matters is the 9 year old who lives in your house.

The true magic of homeschooling happens when we begin to wisely adjust the routine curriculum to our own living, breathing 9 year old. Then, we can begin to view our curriculum as the onramp instead of the destination.

If you are new to The Lazy Genius, here’s the Starter Kit! 20 episodes that will get you energized and moving in the right direction!

And you can find all the posts in this series right here.


  1. This is my favorite post! I’m figuring this out this year while navigating my daughter’s dyslexia. Even with the right curriculum (which took a bit to fins) I still need to adjust the pacing of it for her. It takes her twice as long so we do half of the suggested work each day to keep the joy in our homeschool.

  2. Hi Kortney! Thanks for this fun series! I’m enjoying working through it slowly. 🙂 As a Californian, I recognized your “mysterious pink flowers” immediately – that’s a Crape Myrtle Tree! They come in a few different colors (we often see light pink, magenta, purple, and white). Here’s an article about them that you might enjoy taking a look at:

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