This post is from contributor, Judy Hoch.
It seems that the new homeschool year often starts out so well, promising a wonderful year of learning ahead. New books, exciting projects, freshly-sharpened pencils, even a field trip or two–everything seems just perfect.
But then things change. Homeschooling suddenly gets . . . tough.
Maybe it’s bad attitudes that arise, filling the day with stress and discipline issues. Or maybe a learning disability is causing seemingly insurmountable difficulties. Or perhaps the myriad responsibilities of a busy homeschool mom just become too much to handle.
It happens to all of us. The circumstances may be different for each of us, but we all face seasons when homeschooling is just plain hard.
3 Things to Do When Homeschooling Gets Tough
1. Identify the problem.
When homeschooling gets tough, it’s time to step back and assess the situation. What exactly is causing the stress in your homeschool?
If you are feeling completely overwhelmed or burned out, it may be helpful to ask someone else–your spouse, a friend, another homeschool mom–to help you look at the situation with fresh eyes.
Some issues you may want to consider:
- Do you have younger children who need to be occupied during school time?
- Are you struggling with curriculum or materials that just aren’t a good fit?
- Would more organization reduce your frustration?
- Is your child showing any indications of a learning difficulty?
- Is your schedule too full?
- Are you overwhelmed by bad attitudes or sloppy work habits?
- Are you struggling to teach advanced courses?
2. Look at your options.
After you have determined which issues are causing the most difficulty, you can work toward a solution. If you find multiple areas that are challenging, consider choosing the top two or three areas to address first.
Depending on what your personal struggles are, you may benefit from:
- Getting outside help for difficult subjects or learning challenges
- Enlisting extra help from your spouse, a family member, or even a babysitter
- Changing your schedule to use baby’s naptime for homeschooling
- Reducing extracurricular activities
- Investing time in resolving discipline issues
- Letting go of homeschool perfection
3. Seek support.
Many stressful issues don’t have a quick and easy solution. Bad attitudes take some time to eradicate. Learning disabilities don’t just disappear. And feeling overwhelmed doesn’t go away overnight.
Try to find a homeschool group–either an official support group or a friendly group of homeschool moms–where you can benefit from the experience and wisdom of others who have faced similar challenges. A regular dose of encouragement from another mom in the homeschool trenches is good medicine for all of us.
What issues are making homeschooling tough for you?
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