There are 4 phases of learning: Core Phase, roughly ages 0-8; Love of Learning Phase, roughly 8-12; Scholar Phase, roughly 12-16; and Depth Phase, roughly 16-22.
Beyond this come the Applicational Phases of Mission and Impact, where we each set out and accomplish our unique missions in life, and fulfill our role as societal elder and mentor to the rising generation.
During Core Phase work times and play times are scheduled, with children allowed to choose their own subjects of play during play time. As they get older, play includes reading, math and other subjects that students choose to engage for fun.
At the beginning of the Love of Learning Phase a student might choose a structure of 1 or 2 or 3 hours a day of set study time; it is important that the student choose it, and that the mentor help the student learn accountability for his choice.
If the student won’t choose it, you haven’t inspired him yet—get to work. Don’t fall back into requiring. Pay the price to inspire, and trust the process–it’s the only way to get the result of the student owning their role as a self-educator.
By the early Scholar Phase a student will likely be studying 6-8 hours a day on topics of their deepest interest. During the Scholar and Depth Phases, the student increases the structured time and goes into more depth.