Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Challenges Of Homeschooling





    In the first part of my homeschooling series I wrote about some of the awesome JOYS of homeschooling~here's that post if you missed it  


Ah yes, there are SO many great reasons to homeschool!




However, that being said, today I'm going to share some of the unique challenges you may face, should you choose to begin a homeschooling journey. I will share my personal TOP FIVE, but keep in mind that our children were in full-time school up until this past year, so I realize that other homeschooling families will not have had the same experience :)

So here it goes: the TOP FIVE challenges I've experienced in homeschooling, and how I'm learning to deal with them:


1) You will have dual roles as both parent AND teacher!

How do I deal with this:

I try to be firm, loving but yet consistent. I don't want to be a authoritative task master, however I want to teach my children to respect authority figures in general, whether it be their 'regular' teacher or their Mama. It has been quite a change for them, coming out of school, but I feel that we have fallen into more of a routine. Mom is still Mom during the day, she just happens to also be 'teacher'/'leader'/'facilitator'.



2) You will be responsible for ALL of your children's social interactions!

How do I deal with this:

I plan outings with their friends. I take them on interesting day trips and afternoon adventures. We go to church twice a week. They have extracurricular activities they participate in. We go to our local library. We joined a near-by Homeschooling Group. All of the above have really helped to tame my children's feelings of being out of touch with their former schoolmates.



3) You will feel isolated from time to time!

How do I deal with this:

Well, we live out in the country. Not always easy to feel 'not isolated'...so we do all of the above from question #2 PLUS I also make sure to call adults periodically throughout the week...for my sanity.
 I also blog and read other homeschooling blogs as well. I keep in touch on social media with friends, but this is not the same as an actual visit, so I make sure to schedule adult hang-out time in my spare time :)



4) There is no substitute for YOU!

How do I deal with this:

Sometimes I feel tired. Sometimes I feel so tired all I want to do is sleep all day, let alone homeschool! However, I do try to pace myself throughout the week. I try to make sure to not overschedule during the day (even turning off the phone/computer for certain parts of the day).
I try to eat well, exercise and get 7+ hours of sleep. It sounds simple, but let me tell you that if I don't do these things, then I will have a much harder time trying to homeschool!



5) Your children may give you a hard time!

How do I deal with this:

Most days are pretty straightforward. Other days are a little difficult. Then there are those days that make you want to pull all of your hair out and send them all on the school bus!

So how do I deal with those really TOUGH days?

Well, I pray. I get relevant scriptures out to read. I put on worship music in the home. I call up a friend who I know will bring some encouragement. If I can't make the call I will send out a short text or email letting a friend know to please pray for me. I will call my husband with an update. Once in a while, if things are really bad, I will put on a movie...

Thankfully, the further on this journey I've come the 'bad' days are getting fewer and farther apart.

However, that being said, I would highly recommend before any parent decides to homeschool (especially if your children have already been in school for awhile) that you consider the cost. Come into this thing prepared.



***Next Up: I will be sharing in the next part of this series helpful resources and steps I took to prepare for the switch from 'regular' school to homeschooling. Stay tuned!

13 comments:

  1. None of the points you mentioned seemed too bad until you said, "There's no sub!" Yikes! That is a very good point I never thought about.

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    1. Smile~ I didn't either until my 'sick' or 'very tired' days came along! But, as I said we're figuring out creative ways to homeschool around everyday life.
      Thanks for stopping by :)

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  2. hi, i'm following the "aloha friday" hop. i would love for you to visit my blog and follow if you like it.

    http://www.blackinkpaperie.blogspot.com

    thanks
    new follower bev

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    Replies
    1. I'm on it! Looking forward to checking out your blog Bev :)

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  3. I'm seriously impressed with anyone who can home school their children! props to you! :)

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    1. Thanks! It's definitely not an easy choice, but the benefits for us have far outweighed the cost :)

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  4. What a timely post! I'm really looking forward to reading your other insights on home schooling. We know that that is what God is calling us to do but it's overwhelming to think about sometimes. And thank you for the tips on staying connected. Prayer....lots and lots of prayer! :)

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    1. I am so excited for you and your future homeschooling journey! I believe that when God has called us to something He will give us all that we need: the tools, the encouragement, the people we need to connect to...anyways, so glad you stopped by :)

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  5. Well thanks for sharing. I don't have kids, but home school has been discussed for our future children. I'm definitely not the smartest person out there, so that is an issue we have with it. I work from home, so I'd be the one home all day. You've given me a few things to consider about going down that path. Thanks a lot for the information :) totally_rachel

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    1. Thanks Rachel for sharing. You would be surprised: being 'smart' or not (although we are often so HARD on ourselves as I actually happened to blog about today) doesn't actually affect homeschooling from the studies I've read. There are so many tools (curriculum, help online and support groups) that make homeschooling any child very feasible.
      Nice to hear your heart & thanks for stopping by :)

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  6. On #5 about children giving you a hard time, I'm there right now! We have homeschooled for over 6 years now, have a great curriculum (Time4Learning)and you would think that after 6 years we were into smooth sailing...yeah, not so much! Sometimes I just need to have a break from my hormonal 'tween daughter and I imagine she needs a break from me. Sometimes that means we don't do formal school and I need to give her something to do that helps us both unwind. I've found that having readily available educational games work to give us a break from each other without stalling the forward educational progress. One of my favorite places is Learning Games for Kids (http://www.learninggamesforkids.com) which has lots of educational games. Keyboarding games is our focus right now, she can work independently and let me step out of the teacher role into the mom role for a little while!

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing Linda!
      I have found from talking to other homeschooling moms in the area that we're all experiencing similar results: we all have our 'successful' days, and then there are our 'not so much successful' days ;)
      Thanks for the game link as my kids do like educational stuff online. My computer has been an immense help in many of our projects actually.
      Thanks for stopping by :)

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  7. Schooling year round means that if you have to take days out for sick days, it won't really matter. -Katie Gillet

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