Hello New Homeschool Families!
This is an exciting year for you. You’re embarking on a crazy learning journey together for the first time. This year is going to look and feel different than any other year, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be your best school year yet. Here are four tips from a veteran homeschooling momma to keep in mind as you start your first year as a homeschool family.
Don’t Get Hung Up On A Schedule! Embrace Routine Instead!
The idea of school that most adults have in mind is what we know: public school. The thing that’s great about homeschool is that you don’t need to try to recreate a public school classroom in your house. Are there great things that you may want to incorporate into your home learning space? Absolutely. But your house is not a school building. You do not have to schedule your children (and yourself) down to the minute and remain hung up on sticking to that all day. Embrace the ability to flex your time to work for your family.
If mom has daily meetings at 9, then start your day later to accommodate that. If dad works second or third shift, shift your homeschool schedule to maximize family time. Just because you’d like to ideally start at a certain time each day doesn’t mean that it will. That is okay. Develop a routine that works for your family. Be flexible, and roll with it. You’ll be infinitely happier when you do!
Not Every Day Will Be Magical
We’re all human. Young and old people alike have hard days, sleepy days, and grumpy days interspersed with the magical, happy, fun days. That is to be expected. Some days will be tougher than others. Sometimes you may not feel like teaching. Sometimes your children may not feel like learning. Again, this is normal and it does not make you and your children destined to fail as homeschoolers. Really soak up the amazing times together, the life-affirming “a-ha” moments, and the joy you’ll see in your child when she masters a new skill. Then remember those days when you’re drudging through a tough day. We’re doing life with our children, and we’re all only human, after all.
Progress Over Perfection
At the end of your first year of homeschool, you’ll be able to look back at how far your children have grown as students. You’ll be able to reflect on what worked and what didn’t, how you all learned to work together as a family, and all the amazing moments you got to spend together. At the end of the year, we want to see our children making progress as learners. Are they developing interests in topics? Learning new skills? Becoming kind and responsible people? If you can answer yes, then you’re on the right path.
Plug Into The Homeschool Community For Support
No matter what brought you to homeschool this year, you’ve made a commitment to your children to help them grow and learn this year. Plug into the homeschool community via social media and bloggers to find advice, encouragement, and inspiration. Being a parent is a tough job and so is being a teacher.
Embracing both roles can feel daunting, but with support and advice from veteran homeschoolers, you can have a great year with your family living and learning together!