After much consideration, you’ve made the decision to homeschool. Maybe you’ve found an approach that you love, or a curriculum that looks just right for you and your little student. Now what? Are you ready to jump in? Are you worried about what this year could bring?
Here are six tips to keep in mind as you begin your first year as a homeschooling parent:
- Know that things can change. In fact, expect it. This is both a good thing and a bad thing. The first few weeks may work beautifully and then you’ll hit resistance. You may hit that resistance on the second day of “school.” Know that it has happened to us all, that you are still in control and that you always have the power to change things. For example: are you pushing too hard? Slow down. Are you having fun together? If not, change that immediately! Is that perfect math program making you all crazy? Find something new.
- Find a support group. Homeschool parents are fiercely independent people, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need to be around like minded friends on a regular basis. Make it a priority to meet other homeschooling families. As your first year goes on, you will need this more than any amazing curriculum you can buy.
- Be gentle with yourself. You’ve taken on a tremendous job. Yes, you can do it, but sometimes you’ll need a break. Some days will be wonderful, some a struggle and many will be a bit of both. On the tough days, take a step back and take time for yourself. Know that you will figure it all out over time.
- Know your WHY and remind yourself daily. Why are you homeschooling? What are your goals? What do you want most for your children? Write it down, hang it up and visit often.
- Don’t play the comparison game. It’s a trap we all fall into at some point, but it’s a dangerous place to go as a homeschool mom. You will likely come across a homeschool mom (or 3 or 4) who are downright amazing. Put the brakes on the moment you start comparing yourself to them. Every homeschool family finds their own path to greatness. You will too!
- Connect with your child every single day. Have you connected with your children or are you simply managing and teaching and moving on? Take the time to connect. The most beautiful result of the homeschooling lifestyle is the relationship that develops between you and your child. Nurture that relationship every day.
What would help you in your first year of homeschooling? Have a homeschool question you need answered? Ask us in the comments or contact us.