posts in homeschool encouragement

How to Strike a Homeschool Balance (Without Losing Your Mind!)

Striking a balance isn't always easy when you're homeschooling. Here are six tips to help you find that balance.

How to Strike a Homeschool Balance without Losing Your Mind

Striking a balance in life can be a real challenge.

When you're homeschooling your kids this is especially true. It's very easy to get off track or let one aspect of life take over to the exclusion of all else.

Recently I faced this problem. 

I had been without a vehicle for a couple of months, so when I finally got one I needed to catch up on everything. Before I knew it, I was on the road all day, every day. 

Eye doctor, neurologist, cheerleading practice, go-go-go! We were so busy, we didn't eat one single meal at home for weeks! 

I had to slow down and get my act together.

How Much Time Does Homeschooling Really Take?

mom and child homeschooling

"I could never homeschool. I don't have enough time."

  • Maybe you're a single mom.
  • Maybe you have to work outside the home.
  • Maybe you have a large family.
Not having enough time is a common reason for not homeschooling. 

Does homeschooling really take a lot of time? Is it necessary to school the children for 6 or 7 hours each day? How does that work?

What to Do When Your Homeschool Year Has Been Derailed


The 2015-16 homeschool year did not go as planned. 

Usually, I get our curriculum laid out and purchased in February/March and begin our year on April 1.

That's not what happened this year. 

The short version of this story is that bipolar depression plagued my youngest for many months, making it nearly impossible for her to function. 

In addition to that, my year was a financial flop. I had no money for curriculum.

So what does one do when the school year feels like a complete wash?

10 Things You Need to Do Before You Begin Homeschooling

Homeschooling mother and child

You've decided to homeschool, but where do you begin?

Buy textbooks? Choosing curriculum? Transforming a room into a classroom?

Maybe you'll do those things, but there are a few important things you need to do before diving into those activities.

I wish someone had told me these ten things. So I'm telling you.

The 4 Worst Homeschool Mistakes (and How to Fix Them)

boy at desk

Every homeschool parent makes mistakes.

We all do it. I did. Chances are you have (or are). I'm sharing some of the more common homeschool mistakes and how you can fix them.

Worst Homeschool Mistakes and How to Fix Them

{This post may contain affiliate links.}

Comparing Your Homeschool to Public School

It's common for new homeschool parents to worry if their child is 'keeping up' with his public school peers. The result can be that you pressure your child to move along before he has mastered a skill. It can also keep you stressed out.

The Fix:
Understand that homeschooling is not a competition. 

Your child doesn't need to 'keep up' with what his public school peers (or homeschooling peers, for that matter) are doing. Homeschooling means freedom. Guide your child according to his abilities. Take advantage of that freedom.

Relax and know that your child will progress at a pace just right for him

Becoming a Slave to Your Curriculum (or schedule)

What does this look like? It looks like a stressed out mom with stressed out children. You spend each day fretting over how much is getting done and when.

The Fix:
View your curriculum and schedule as guidelines. 

Your schedule should be more of a routine than a schedule. With a routine, you can start and finish at any time of day, regardless of what else is happening in your life. 

Your curriculum is not your master. Allow your child to move at his own pace. Set short lesson times and when the timer goes off, he's done. 

Of course, if he is engrossed in something at the moment, allow him to continue. Following his interests is a step toward self-education. Encourage that!

Setting Unrealistic Expectations (or no expectations)

This can go hand-in-hand with the previous two mistakes. 

When you're expectations are unrealistic, your child will be under undue stress and you, quite likely, will feel like a failure as a homeschool parent. 

Just because your child isn't reading at 5, doesn't mean he's behind. Just because your friend's 3-year-old already reads, doesn't reflect on your homeschool either.

It's also easy to slip into a too-relaxed state. It starts off as a simple break and before you know it, you haven't done anything all year. 

Yes, that can happen.

The Fix:
Get to know your child well. Set some realistic goals, then put together a curriculum that addresses his unique abilities, weaknesses, and interests.

Take breaks, yes, but don't let that get control of you either. If it does, don't beat yourself up. Pull out the books and start moving forward!

Ignoring Your Child's Ideas and Opinions

Yes, you're the parent. Yes, you know your child very well. Still, you can't know everything he thinks and feels unless he tells you, right?

If you press forward with all sorts of ideas and projects without consulting with him, he's going to lose interest. School will be a drudgery for him. 

That, my friend, defeats the goal of creating self-educators. You don't want him to hate learning.

The Fix:
Listen to him. Value his input. 

If something isn't working, make a change. 
If he's struggling, find out why. Then make a change. 

There are plenty of mistakes to be made, but these are the top four I see in my consulting business.

What other mistakes would you add to the list?

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The Ups and Downs of My Homeschool Life

Homeschooling has it's ups and downs. Here are some great things about our homeschool and some not-so-great things.

Let's talk about what I love about homeschooling. 


So that was a little short, I'll admit. The truth is I enjoy homeschooling. Except for one thing, I actually do enjoy every aspect of this lifestyle.

There is only one thing about homeschooling I don't like. really dislike writing our curriculum. And that's it. That's my one and only dislike.

But no one wants to hear about my perfect homeschool, right? That's great, because I don't have one!

My homeschool may not be full of likes and dislikes, but it is full of ups and downs.

Changes in Our Homeschool Journey through the Years

One mom shares the many detours in her homeschool journey.

I don't know if you've ever noticed, but I always refer to our homeschool experience as a journey. That's how I picture it.

I picture it as a road, winding through beautiful, scenic landscapes. What we will see or do along the way remains to be seen.

Just like any journey, homeschooling consists of smooth riding, bumps in the road, and plenty of detours. Sometimes, we just stop to take a rest and learn from the world around us.

100 Reasons to Homeschool

When I decided to write this post for the 100 Things series, I went to my Facebook community for input. I asked their reasons for homeschooling. Between them and me, we have a list of 100 things!

  1. Children can learn in a style and at a pace that fits them.
  2. Freedom to learn in the real world.
  3. Freedom to live in a natural way rather than quietly sitting all day.
  4. Children are free to explore their own interests and talents.
  5. We can take field trips or travel whenever we want to.

  6. We can evaluate our children rather than test them.
  7. We don't have to teach to the test. 
  8. No state mandated curriculum.
  9. We can choose to teach religious studies or not.
 10. We can use our time efficiently. No busy work. 

I May Be a Single Homeschooling Mama, But I'm No Supermom

I'm no super mom

"I'm in awe of all you do!"

"Wow! I don't know how you do it all. You're awesome!"

People say things like this to me all the time. Because I work, homeschool and am a single mom of special needs kids, people are impressed. 

Now, I'm not saying I don't enjoy the boost of confidence from compliments. I do. Feel free to keep them coming.;-) But I also want you to know I'm not a Supermom. 

I want you to know that because I don't want you to doubt yourself.

It's easy for readers to look at mom bloggers and formulate conclusions based on our blogs. We can look so put together. 

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