I remember wanting three specific things when I first started homeschooling: a "cute" classroom, the "perfect" curriculum, and a foolproof checklist of tips for successful homeschooling. I actually thought that there was a "right" way to homeschool-- that I could somehow forgo the challenges, curriculum changes, and discouragement that sometimes accompanied stories of honest homeschooling moms.I laugh, now, looking back at those naive and immature beginnings. Some days in homeschooling is simply stressful. We teach our children in the context of real life, real pressures, and real every day challenges. Through days of chaos with little ones, manipulative malfunctions, and unwilling attitudes...we become well aware of how non-formulaic teaching our children truly is. While there are no shortcuts to learning, no perfect programs, and no absolute way to avoid discouragement and weariness in teaching our children, there are simple things we can do to anticipate and create the context for an encouraging homeschool day.
10 Simple Tips That Encourage (But Don't Ensure) Stress-Free Homeschool Days
1. Be prepared by reviewing the lesson plans beforehand.
2. Follow a daily routine.
3. Sharpen pencils and gather supplies before starting.
4. Schedule snack times and pre-determine the menu.
5. Prioritize character forming, not content acquiring.
6. Stay off the phone and internet while teaching.
7. Treat/speak to your child the way you’d want a school teacher to.
8. Pick creative times to do memorization and review. (Preparing dinner, running errands, and driving together in the car are great times to practice and review.)
9. Moms: Get dressed and ready as for an important job; because it is.
10. Teach your child out of the overflow of your heart. Begin each day filling ourselves up with the Word of God, that we might overflow with Him when stressful and challenging circumstances do inevitably arise.
These are just some things that work at our house. What ideas do you have? What are ways in which you plan and prepare for less stress and more joy in your homeschool day?
Because of Grace,
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