Have you found yourself faced with the reality of homeschooling? Girl, I see you, and I have been you.
I’m actually finding myself thrown into homeschooling for the third time. Although it’s my third time around, each time feels overwhelmingly daunting at first, especially when homeschooling wasn’t your original plan for the year.
You’re Not Alone in the Homeschooling Journey
If you are finding yourself thrown into homeschooling for the first, second, or third time, you aren’t alone. The more I homeschool, the more I realize how common it is for other homeschool moms to feel thrown into it as well.
For our family, school options are something we have to re-evaluate often. There are seasons when public school is the best fit for us, and other times when homeschooling is best. Currently, I have one homeschooler, and two in public school. Each child, family and circumstance are unique and different.
There are several reasons a family might choose to homeschool.
These include (but are not limited to):
- Kids with learning disabilities, such as dyslexia.
- Flexibility in learning for families who enjoy flexibility or who travel.
- Families who feel religious convictions about teaching their children at home.
- Moms who love the idea of homeschooling and want to try it.
If you find yourself suddenly homeschooling, there’s a chance you already feel worn out from whatever life event has led you to this decision. In fact, you might be so worn out from life that you don’t know how you could physically or mentally homeschool right now. If so, I totally feel you. That fatigue and overwhelm is what held me back for a long time.
This verse helped me to finally go for it.
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9 (ESV)
It’s something I still tell myself on hard days: Do not grow weary of doing good. The fact is, I’m not just homeschooling. I’m also discipling my child. Having more time through homeschool opens up an even more unique opportunity for that.
If you feel like God is asking you to homeschool, I encourage you to take the leap and try it. You don’t have to commit to forever. You can always re-enroll them if it turns out to be a disaster.
Getting Started with Homeschooling
If you aren’t sure where to start, here are a few starting points to get you going.
1. Read your state’s homeschool laws. Each state is different. At the very least, you will probably need a cover school. You can find these fairly easily via a Google search.
2. Start simple. If you find yourself suddenly homeschooling, don’t feel pressured to buy a lot of expensive curriculum right away. It might take a few months for you to learn the best way your child learns, or their placement levels. My advice is to order a basic curriculum from Amazon (there are several that follow state credentials). Use these while you research the best curriculum for your family. Then take their assessment tests to find which levels they need.
3. Go slow or fast according to your needs. One of the greatest benefits of homeschooling is the freedom of pace for your child. You might have a child who really excels in math, but struggles in spelling or language arts. You can go faster in one subject while camping out in another. If you need to go back to the basics of a lower grade to review or start over with certain concepts, that’s ok. You will begin to learn what your child needs, and how you can help them fill in their gaps.
4. Use YouTube and educational apps. At first I felt guilty using educational YouTube shows or Apps as needed. However, there are a lot of great resources on YouTube, websites or phone apps. In fact, some of the shows we watch are the same shows used in our local public school. Knowing this helped me feel less guilty and more confident in how I am setting up our school days. These resources truly bring a lot of high quality information, while keeping learning fun.
5. Don’t forget to pray. Don’t underestimate the power of prayer for wisdom, guidance and clarity as you set up your homeschool. Each child is unique, and what works for one family might not work for the next. Ask God to guide you through this process.
Okay friends, that’s my list. If you are feeling like God is calling you to homeschool, let me be the first to say that you can do this. I’m rooting for you and cheering you on!
Wife Step: If you are considering or just starting homeschool, the first step for you is to take a deep breath. You can do this as you rely on God every day. The next step is to have fun and enjoy the process. These are special days with your child that you will look back on with joy and gratitude later.
For more on homeschooling, read this.
Kristin is the pastor wife to her hubby and best friend, Tim. Together they have three beautiful girls, and an unusually gorgeous cat named Scooter. Kristin helped start Essential Church in Huntsville, Al, where her husband is the lead pastor. She loves to encourage women with Biblical truth and funny stories at www.kristinmilner.com.