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Extra Tips for Parents Wanting to Homeschool
If you have made the choice to homeschool, found out the legalities of it, created a schedule, purchased supplies, and basically did all that you felt was necessary to homeschool your child, do not forget about yourself in the mix.
It is easy to become overzealous and want to be the best teacher you can be for your child and to make it an awesome experience for them, as well. However, you need to remember to take time out for yourself. There is such a thing as homeschooling burnout if you are not careful. There are many ways to make this an easier and more enjoyable task, as well.
Take Time Outs
A time out is not only for a child who has lost his or her way and needs to think about their actions. A time out is a great way for both you and your child to take a break. If you feel it necessary to, schedule a short naptime in between for both yourself and your younger child.
Taking time out for a healthy snack or a brisk walk around the corner or a 30-minute adventure to the park are all great ways to break up the monotony and to provide a much-needed release for both you and your child.
Take it Outdoors
A superb bonus for homeschooling is that you may school your child outdoors in your very own garden. This brings some much-needed healthy sunshine and fresh air to you both while providing a relaxing backdrop for studies.
Let Yourself off the Hook
It is okay to go into homeschooling full of enthusiasm and zest; however, it is also perfectly all right to know and accept that there will be challenging days. Sometimes it is okay to let yourself off the hook and say that you are both having a rough day and tackle the problem with a fresh mind tomorrow.
Trying to persist because you are concerned about whether or not you are failing only puts added pressure on your child. Know when to take a step back and know when something is simply not working. It is okay to try different things if one is not working.
Eat, Drink, Sleep, and Be Well
Keep in mind that the beauty of homeschooling really is that you get to set your own schedule and your own pace. Take time out to eat healthy snacks and nutritious meals, not just for your children, but for yourself, as well. If naptime is necessary either for you or your child, take a 15 minute siesta break. Remember to stay hydrated all day long. Most traditional schools frown upon bottles of water or fresh-brewed iced tea alongside a desk while a child is learning.
Setting the Bar from the Outset
Before beginning to homeschool your child, decide who and what you are going to be to them while educating them. If you are going to wear the friend hat, then know what comes along with that; if you are going to assume the role of professional teacher, then be prepared to follow through and act accordingly. Talk to other parents about how to balance wearing the parent/teacher hat at the same time.
If you are going to have a loose-fitting schedule that is subject to change, let your children know that there is room for growth. However, on the other hand, if you choose to attempt to stick to and adhere to a set schedule, let them know in no uncertain terms what your expectations of them are for that schedule.
Setting up Meetings
It might be a good idea to set up a meeting time and place during a set time every week. In this manner, you have an outlet to discuss what you feel you need and your children will have the same opportunity.
Letting your children know that they have a voice and a say in the matter, especially when it comes to their own education, is imperative to the success of homeschooling. Feel free to discuss ideas, problems, solutions, and creatively work them out according to each individual. Remember, although it is your responsibility to educate your children, it is, after all, their responsibility to learn.
Making the Grade
This is a tough nut to crack when it comes to our children. How many times has your child come home only to say that it is the teacher and not them causing the inability to learn? Sometimes, it is true that a child/teacher fit is not a good one indeed.
While we all love and adore our children, handing out a grade that they did not earn is something that you have to keep in perspective. Not wanting to hurt a child’s self-esteem is one of the key downfalls in grading your child’s work. When an educator grades a paper, there is a detachment from the child and simply an interest in the material as to whether or not they have grasped it.
In wanting our children to succeed, it might be all too easy to think with our hearts instead of with our academic minds. The desire to give a little curve may come into play, and do not be surprised if it does.
Try to be objective when it comes to matters of grading; keep in mind that you harm your child more than you help when you try to let them slide when it comes to their academic grades.