Worry. Guilt. Self-doubt.
Are these negative thoughts and feelings that prevent you from enjoying your homeschool adventures?
Too often, I experience these negatives in my homeschool process.
And I talk with other homeschool moms who struggle with the same stuff.
Personally, I put on a good act. Pretend that all is well and just roll with the punches. “Look at me! I’m smiling! I’m a fun homeschool mom!”
But, if I am being completely honest, I struggle with maintaining trust in the homeschool process.
Homeschool mamas, we are fighting an uphill battle. One that is noble and worthwhile, for sure. We have invaluable time with our kids as we witness precious moments of learning, inspiration, and creativity. Glimpses of our children growing and reaching their potentials.
Yet, we have battles, don’t we? External expectations rain down upon our homeschool parade. Concerned family and friends pelt us with questions about our kids and their socialization, keeping up with peers, and academic progress. Public school mentality is omnipresent, permeating into even the smallest cracks of doubt.
Internal struggles abound with questions like, “Am I doing enough?” and “Are my kids doing enough?”. It’s like a fill-in-the-blank response: Am I/are we _____ enough? We fill in the blank with words like smart, patient, fun, and organized. We don’t even always fill in the blank, asking ourselves if we are enough-period!
I want you to know that you are not alone in your struggles in trusting the homeschool process. Moms deal with a lot of stress and guilt. By nature, we want to do all that we can for our kids. Homeschooling adds to these mom struggles.
My intention is not one of doom and gloom. Never fear! You have what it takes to homeschool your kids. Sometimes, you just need a reminder. And a big virtual hug to help you know everything is okay:)
The right tools and support will also help you establish and maintain trust in the homeschool process.
Homeschool Process Defined
What do I mean by the “homeschool process”? According to Amy of Rock Your Homeschool (that’s me!), it means:
The overall homeschool journey. All that your child learns while in your home, from birth to adult. The steps you take to teach your kids. Learning that takes place during officical homeschool time, as well as education that naturally occurs due to the establishment of a positive learning environment. Concerns academic, life skills, character education, extracurricular, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and family.
The homeschool process is basically your child’s cumulative experiences while being educated in your home. It is the big picture. The whole enchilada.
How often do you find yourself worrying on a daily (even hourly) basis about the status of your homeschool? Looking back on your homeschool week and fretting that it doesn’t feel like much was accomplished?
It’s so easy to get caught up in the minutia, isn’t it? To stress over small facts and figures that you can’t seem to get your child to memorize? Or lessons skipped because, well, life happened?Conquer #homeschoolmom struggles with these 7 helpful tips to trust the #homeschool process. #ihsnet Click To Tweet
I want you to do me a favor now, will you?
Look back on your own education-homeschool or public. How often do you use those little facts, figures, or lessons that were fussed over when you were in school?
What do you remember about your own education?
Do you recall all those tiny details? Or are you more likely to think about how you felt when you mastered a new concept or skill? Do you remember those amazing teachers who were supportive and understanding?
You started homeschooling for a reason.
You wanted something different for your kids. You wanted a certain kind of learning environment or experience. A love of learning. Freedom to think outside the box. Flexibility in learning concepts.
You can beat back those homeschool fears and doubts. You can establish and maintain trust in the homeschool process. You are doing something incredibly powerful and loving for your kids by homeschooling. Use these tips to help you maintain your focus and rock your homeschool!
I chatted on Facebook Live during my weekday Homeschool Pep Talks with homeschool moms about this topic. I have included those videos at the end of this post so you can discover their tips and ideas.
7 Helpful Tips to Trust in the Homeschool Process
1. Daily Journal
Starting and maintaining a daily journal is an excellent practice for homeschool moms. Use your journal, planner, or notebook to record exactly what happened in your homeschool that day or week. Seeing in black and white the activities and accomplishments can be very powerful and therapeutic. (Thanks to Nadine of Up Above the Rowan Tree for this fabulous reminder!)
2. Reality Check
Take a step back and look at the big picture. Look at what you and your kids have been working on in your homeschool and family life. Remember, chores and errands count as life skills!
Learning can take place at any time on any day of the week. Don’t limit your reality check to “homeschool hours”. Adjust your lens for a clear picture of all the awesome learning that’s going on all the time.
3. Talk with Your Kids
Your kids probably have tremendous insights into your homeschool life. Sit down and have a chat about your concerns. Ask them if there are areas that require more attention. Find out what is working and not working.
For example, I was having one of “those” days when nothing I tried seemed to work. The clincher came when the boys didn’t seem to be paying attention as I was reading our history out loud. I released a big sigh of despair as I allowed the boys to go outside and play.
Just as I was going to cry into my warmed-over coffee mug, Smiley (9) dashed up to me and gave me a big squeeze. “Thanks, mom, for teaching us about all that Egypt stuff today! We’re going to build a pyramid out of rocks and I’m going to be a pharaoh!”
Huh. They were paying attention. And they did get it. Just not the way I had envisioned it 😉
4. Accountability Partner
Find someone you trust and explain your approach to homeschooling. Tell them your reasons and goals for homeschooling. Your significant other or another homeschooling mom who understands your approach can be wonderful sounding boards for when you are struggling with trusting the homeschool process.
5. Trust in Quality Resources
When you fill your homeschool with quality resources, you can trust that your kids are getting all that they need. For example, our family uses Brave Writer Language Arts & Writing Curriculum. By following a Brave Writer Lifestyle, I know that my boys will have a well-rounded, solid home education.
You are enough. Now, it’s time truly believe in those words. How do you transform your negative thoughts into positive habits? Homeschool affirmations! Customize these free printable homeschool affirmations to help you practice and maintain trust in yourself-and the homeschool process.
If part of your struggle is dealing with kids who are struggling, use these affirmations for homeschool kids. These printable cards will help your kids learn positive habits in thinking and doing. And that can help you feel more secure in the homeschool process.
7. Relaxation Techniques
Fill your cup, homeschool mama! Select a few self-care practices to help you nurture and nourish your mind, body, and soul.
Self-guided relaxation is a fabulous way to release stress and anxiety. Some moms find quite time for reading a good book or taking a bath to be restorative. Others love to go out and about, shopping with friends or chilling out over coffee. Making time for self-care will help you remember who you are and how you can rock your homeschool adventures.
Take these tools and add them to your homeschool toolbox. Consider each tip and how it could benefit your trust in the homeschool process. Use these positive habits to help you and your kids grow in your homeschool journeys.