Mindful Motherhood

5 Tips on How Homeschool and Not Loose Your Mind

Listen up mama. I’m going to give you 5 tips on how to homeschool and NOT loose your mind.

Homeschooling your children is an amazing experince, also, it’s hard. Especially the first few years. Best case scinario, you might start out feeling like your on top the world, you can do it all….and you do. However, what usually follows that is feeling burnt out. This usually stirkes toward the end of your second year.

On the other hand, and more realistically, there are tears on day one. Not just from you child, but form you as well. Little Susie declares that she loathes math, and guess what, so do you! Consequently, you question all of your dscisions to do this crazy homeschooling thing, wether your capable, and your frantically googling the public schools phone number because, surely you must have lost your mind when you thought could do this.

Guess what? You CAN do this! Learn from the mistakes of us veterans.

Without further ado, 5 tips on how to homeschool and NOT loose your mind.

1-Know Your Why

You’ve got to think about big things while you’re doing small things so that all the small things go in the right direction.

Alvin Topher

I don’t know who this Alvin dude is, but he is woke. Having a why, and knowing your vision, is the tue north on your compass of life. Therefore I highly reccomend writting it out, and putting it on display. You can find the instructions and free printabes on how to create a homeschool mission statement here.

Have a bad school week? Look at your why.

Struggling with confusing curriculum? Look at you why.

Feeling lost and unfocused? Look at your why.

It will fuel and motivate you.

2-Don’t Do Public School at Home

This is a right of initiation, therfore if you don’t do it, you might be a unicorn.

You clean out a room or a corner of the basement. After that you search for cute litte school desks on Kijiji , and then wind up finding them at the local thrift store for $10 a piece. #winning. You buy some chalk paint and hot pink metal spray paint, and you flip those bad boys into the cutest school desks EVER.

Next up, you buy the biggest white board staples has to offer, and then all of the accessories to go with it. I’m talking about the eraser, the cleaning spray, the funky colored dry erase markers. You arrange the All About Spelling tiles nicely along the top, because your super cool white board is magnetic too!

Last but not least, you proudly display the super detailed schedule you made. It’s color coded, broken down to the quarter hour, and includes bathroom breaks! On this note. Routine? Awesome. Schedule? Stressful.

You’ve put in all of this hard work only to wind up doing school work at the dining room table after 3 short months, leading to the oh so common problem of clearing it off for each and every meal. You discover half of the letter tiles are missing beacause the toddler threw them down the vent. Your schedule has gone to pot, and before you know it you have bookshelves lining the walls of the dining room, and that beautiful creative space is collecting dust.

Not that any of that happened to me *wink*

Homeschooling is a living and breathing thing. You can’t confine it to a desk, or a room. Just accept this as fact, it will save you ton of stress when you can’t figure out why your 7 year old won’t sit still and work diligently at their super awesome diy desk. It’s not your fault. You are NOT failing. This environemt might keep things orderly at public shool, but it’s not healthy OR natural in the home. At least, not long term.

3-Know That Your Schedule is Your Own

This could have gone under the category above, however it’s really deserves it own head line to make the point hit home, because too many homeschoolers feel a strange need to replicate the public school schedule. And when they don’t, they fell “behind”.

Just because public shool starts at 8:30 am, doesn’t mean you need to. If your kids learn best in the after noon, guess what?! You can totoally start school after lunch. Are you an early bird? You can get up at 6 am and be done by 9. Furthermore, just because public school starts at the beginning of September doesn’t mean you need to. Don’t fall into that common shame trap!

There are fewer logistics to juggle when you homeshool, so it inherantly takes less time. If you start in October, you can be done by April. You can school year round and take more breaks. You do you boo!

4-Take Time For Yourself

This is as much about perspective as it is about logistics. All of the memes out there about parenting WILL become your life.

Time to yourself might not look like a girls weekend in Sedona, touring wineries and hiking the burnt orange hills. It might look like reading a book for 30 minutes while you put on a documentary or kick the kids outside to play. Alternately, it might look like getting groceries alone whlie sipping on a pumpkin spice latte. The key is to appreciate every moment that you get to take care of you. Learn a skill you’ve always wanted to learn. Not only will this fill your cup, but it will be an amazing expample to your children.

If you don’t have a group of friends, put yourself out there. Ask on a local homeschool facebook group if there are any other homeschool mama’s with kids in a similar age group that want to meet up for coffee or a play date. Other adults living a similar lifestyle is an important support system to create, and an important part of self care. We are wired for connection, and even if the kids are toting along, your taking care of you by building connections with others.

5-Encourage Independent Learning

Honey, you can’t do it all. Unless you have one child at home, you’ll be be pulled in too many directions. Therfore, you’ll never have time for anything other than homeschooling, and we just talked about how important it is to have time for yourself.

I feel strongly that creating independant learners ought to be one of the top homeschooling goals. You’ll be setting your child up for sucess because they will have the skills they need in order to follow their passions. Not only that, but this skill is what Univerities and Colleges LOVE about homeschoolers. They don’t need their hands held, and they get good grades because they know HOW to learn.

You can do this by:

  • Choosing a few online or computer based classes that they can do on their own
  • Don’t be afraid to use educational shows or you tube channels based on their interests
  • If your children are older, they can do book work on their own, and you can check it later
  • If you have a diverse age range, have the older kids help the younger ones ocassionally. After all one of the best ways to learn is to teach!
  • Let them choose thier curriculum. They might just surprise you, and their motivation will improve

That sums up my 5 tips on how to homeschool and NOT loose your mind!

Good luck and God speed.

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