Is Homeschooling Easy?
Is Homeschooling Easy? No, not at all. There are good days and challenging days. I’m reminded of a quote by Amelia Earhart which states.
“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward.”
In essence, homeschooling is not easy, but it’s very rewarding.
I’m asked all the time by other moms why I’ve chosen to homeschool. You can read my responses in a previous post.
Over the last 12 years, I’ve discovered a few tricks that have helped me to have more good days than bad.
1. Start your day with a devotional or prayer.
With anything in life, you need to start refreshed every morning and homeschooling is no different. It sets the tone and atmosphere for your day. Train your children to also enjoy having time to sit and pray. Our children will mimic everything we do whether it’s good or bad. My son is at an age where he can read his daily devotion without my help, but we still make time to come together to discuss, read and reflect. If you need some prayer ideas, here’s a great resource.
2. Take regular breaks.
Depending on the age of your child will dictate the length of your breaks. For a younger child, break often. Younger children should spend the majority of their learning time through discovery. All too often, I see families schooling young children 4-6 hours a day. You’re setting yourself up for failure and disaster. If you’re not taking breaks, you are going to frustrate yourself along with your child. Non-breaking will also cause burn out.
3. Set realistic expectations for the day.
Be realistic about your day. If you know in advance you have obligations outside of your home such as appointments, consider it a light day and work around your schedule at a later time. Who says you can’t finish up your homeschooling day in the afternoon or evening? Just make sure you’re following your state guidelines for the required amount of days per year.
4. You’re not a public or private school.
Your home does not have to resemble a public or private school setting. I remember years ago when I started on my journey, I set up my basement as an official classroom with a bell and all (crazy). My girls were required to raise their hands in order to go to the bathroom. It was torture for them. I soon learned that my reasoning and schedule wasn’t going to work. I had them home for a reason and it definitely was not to torture them. There’s no reason to duplicate a system that does not work for your family.
5. Homeschooling is a marathon, not a race.
Homeschooling is a marathon which means we take our time. Savor the moments you have with your children. Now, don’t get me wrong, we get our work done, but we as parents are the teacher, so there is a lot of flexibility in our time and what needs to be taught. If your child needs to spend a few more weeks on a math concept until he gets it, that’s ok. That’s the beauty of what we do. We’re delivering specialized education for our children.
6. Change up your routine.
Changing up your routine makes homeschooling fun and exciting. Why not take your studies outside into the backyard or park? Children need consistency, but they also love adventures and surprises. Think about the times you’ve been surprised by your husband and the joy it brought. The same applies to our children. On rainy days, my son loves making tents and forts. It’s his fun spot to complete his assignments. It’s fun for him and it adds an extra adventure to his day. I’m okay with that because he’s only a kid for a season.
Enjoy your journey of homeschooling. What are your favorite ideas to have good days vs. challenging days? I’d love to hear them.