I have never met a homeschool mom or dad that takes their responsibility to their children lightly.
You get up at the crack of dawn to have alone time because you won’t get any during the day.
You meticulously plan activities to keep everyone engaged.
You skip makeup, wear the easiest clothes to throw on, and drink cold coffee because you have bigger priorities than that.
And somewhere between planning, teaching, and bonding with kids, you have to find time to do laundry, clean, and cook.
It gets tiring fast, especially when you have friends and family who whispering “you are making a mistake” in our ears every chance they get.
And you will make mistakes, but homeschooling probably won’t be one of them.
And before I begin, just let me be honest for a second. I have made all 3 of these mistakes. 1 and 3 are still a struggle for me 7 years into my homeschooling journey.
Here I offer you a list of the top 3 mistakes I see homeschool parents make.
1.)Chasing it ALL.
There is never enough time for us to have it all. There just isn’t. You don’t have to have a perfectly clean and tidy house. You don’t have to do every exercise in your curriculum. You don’t have to sign up your kids for every enrichment lesson or sleepover.
And the best part is that you don’t have to apologize for that either.
Find a routine/schedule that works for you. Check your priorities and sign up for one or two (or no) activities per week. And for the love of yourself, focus on the things you do get done and be proud of your accomplishments.
You are a mom, striving to do the best for your family, and rocking it. Don’t forget that.
2.) Trying to plow through.
The beautiful thing about homeschooling is that you have 2x as long to get through one grade. You have evenings and weekends to get work done.
Remember that the main factor in the efficacy of homeschool is the fact that you can move at your own pace.
So if your child had a bad night’s sleep, you did, there’s a major change happening, you need a mental health day, or even a day to catch up on housework or planning, take a break.
Let yourself and your children breathe and relax. Come back refreshed and ready to work.
Not sure what I mean? Check out this post I wrote about all the ways you can use a break to come back stronger.
3.) Not letting their kids struggle
Learning isn’t a linear process, and it isn’t an easy process either.
Let them struggle, especially as they get older. Don’t swoop in and rescue them. Don’t stand over their shoulder and correct mistakes before they even realize it.
Give them a chance to stretch their mental muscles. Give them a chance to fail.
Then you come in and give them the tools to fix their own mistakes.
For young kids, you may want to walk them through the mistake. For older kids, use scaffolding questions to get their wheels turning and help them find their own mistakes.
For example, if your child is working on calculating the area of circles. You immediately notice they used the formula for circumference. Instead of pointing out the mistake, ask them why the answer isn’t squared or ask them what the difference is between the circumference formula and the area formula is.
Homeschooling looks different for every family. You can embrace that, and embrace making mistakes of your own. In the words of the immortal Miss Frizzle, “Take Chances, Make Mistakes, and Get Messy!” because that is how you learn. And that is the ultimate goal of homeschooling, right?
What are some mistakes you have made in your homeschooling journey?
Hi! I am Ali, a homeschool mom who is passionate about science, managing my money and time well. Unfortunately, with an army of tiny faces, I am always still kind of a mess.
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