Today I wanted to share with you a personal post. I wanted to share with you the struggles we have been having with homeschooling during this very challenging season.
I like to think of this as just that – a ‘season’. I know that this will pass. I know we have much sunnier days ahead. Just as we have made it through difficult seasons before, we will also make it through this one.
But I want it to be very clear … this is NOT homeschooling.
In today’s video and blog post I share with you our current journey, as well as provide 5 important things that will help us to overcome this challenge and move into a season of thriving.
Here is the video I created for you from my YouTube channel:
When the world started to close down, and it seemed the entire world began to ‘homeschool’, that word took on a totally different meaning.
I remember friends of mine casually mentioning to me how lucky I was! I was used to all this – I mean, we were homeschoolers after all. But this, my friends, is not what homeschooling is.
Prior to 2020, homeschooling for my family meant quite the opposite of what we are experiencing now. Homeschooling, for us, truly meant freedom.
We were free to learn at our own pace and in our own way.
We were free to decide it needed to be a park day and take off with friends.
We were free to adventure and explore our community.
We were free to try out classes, clubs, and activities diving into new interests and learning new skills.
We were free to meet and see all. the. people.
THAT, for us, was homeschooling.
This season that we are in is a challenging one for so many people. If you are new to homeschooling, or even if you are a seasoned homeschooling family, I wanted to take some time today to share with you a little bit of encouragement. I wanted to share with you 5 things that we are clinging to right now and that are pulling us through this homestretch (because I do believe we are on the homestretch).
5 Things to Help During this Season of Homeschooling:
1.Find a Supportive Group of Community
This was a complete game changer for me when we first started homeschooling. We are missing our homeschooling group so much right now! I cannot wait for our weekly meet ups to resume once more. This is definitely a neccessity for our homeschooling success – weekly visits with friends of my own and friends for my kids.
Right now a lot of these communities need to be online. Find a really supportive and uplifting group! Be mindful of the ‘vibe’ of the group. You want the group to be supportive and understanding, while still being positive.
2. Plan a Fun Day!
We have always had a special day on Friday. It started as Field trip Friday and has recently morphed into Fun Friday as we haven’t been able to go on many field trips. This is such a perfect way to end a week! Even right now we can head to a park, explore a new nature space, or visit a beach. Once the world opens up more, think of a new experience you can give your children each and every Friday. These adventures are one of the best parts of homeschooling.
3. Make Special Traditions
Perhaps every May 24th you have a Star Wars day. Perhaps every birthday you have no school and a special celebration all day long. Perhaps every Tuesday you go get Timbits from the local coffee shop.
Plan out special moments with your little ones and these traditions will pull you through all sorts of hard seasons.
4. Make Social a Priority
With everything we have all been going through, I really feel our children do not need more academics, they need more real-life interactions. Social time with friends is becoming a priority for us and we are taking every opportunity we can to get together with our friends.
Rest assured that the academic side of life will be just fine. I am always amazed at how quickly school work can get done when ‘buckets are full’ and everyone is at their best. When my children are in the right mindset they will get through their work lickety split!
5. Get Help
I have learned that I cannot be with my children all day, every day. I used to manage my blog in the evenings, but now that my children are staying up later and little Norah still gets up throughout the night, I realized things needed to change. I have hired a sitter to help me so I have one full day a week to work. I am in fact writing this blog post as she is here with my children! This has been so freeing and one of the best things I could have done. My children have a fun day with a brand new person who has wonderful activities planned for them and I have a day to tackle all of the things I need to get done as well.
I understand that many are not in this position. Previously, I have done “child swap” days with a fellow homeschooling family. I have also had the help of my parents in the past as well. Perhaps you have a partner that has flexibility on evenings or weekends and you could have time to yourself or time to work then.
Homeschooling doesn’t need to mean that you are with your children all day every day. There is nothing at all wrong with needing a break and needing time for yourself. This is healthy and normal. I wish I had realized this when I first started homeschooling!
There you have it my friends. Five things that are helping me to get through this homestretch and giving me things to look forward to in the months ahead.
I hope you are feeling supported on this journey. If I can help in any way, please let me know. Us homeschooling Mamas need to stick together!