HOMESCHOOL Q & A: ANSWERING MOMS #1 QUESTIONS
Hello homeschool moms,
Future homeschool moms,
or moms exploring homeschool!
I am a homeschool mom of four little ones 8, 5, 4 and 1 years old. I currently homeschool my 8 year old who is in 2nd grade and my 5 year old who slowly started Kindergarten this year. I am by no means an expert in homeschooling and have almost 2 years under my belt as a homeschooler. I have learned through mistakes, trial and error, and from other wonderful homeschool moms. In my almost 2 years of homeschooling I have had a few “perfect” homeschools day where everything goes as planned. However, life happens and as a mom and a homeschooler we have to develop the skill of going with the flow. Sometimes school happens at night and sometimes school doesn’t happen at all that day. Thats ok. We are not trying to imitate public school and that’s a hard concept to flush out. Homeschooling is a calling that not all mothers are led to but don’t let confidence hinder you from the greatest calling of educating your own children!
Let’s start with the questions!!
I didn’t just pull these questions out of thin air. I really wanted to reach moms out there needing answers. So I decided to turn to social media and I polled Facebook and Instagram asking for questions that homeschoolers or possible homeschoolers had and these are the questions that were asked by people who replied to my post!
1. How do you homeschool and have time to write a blog?
The answer is quite simple. Homeschooling only takes 1-3 hours during the younger years and a little longer for older kids but we’re not there yet. So we start our day of school in the morning roughly around 9 am and we are done by 11 or 12. This leaves us time to take care of things around the house or work on the blog. This does not mean my kids aren’t learning after 12 pm. They are constantly learning how to cook, clean, science experiments, reading and I could go on for days! However, I have struggled with time management and have recently been utilizing my phone’s alarms to tell me to stop or start something. I generally set aside 1-2 hours a day to sit down and write or promote the blog. Time management is something I have to work on still but I’m getting better at it each day. If any moms have any insight I would love to hear it!
2. How are you intentional about socialization with your kids?
That’s the #1 question moms are concerned about when it comes to homeschooling and I really don’t see it as an issue in my family. The truth is that every homeschool family is different! Some homeschool families do not involve their children in as many activities as others. Some families are apart of sports, theatre, co-ops, play dates, music lessons and the list goes on. But some just decide to limit the time spent outside the home. Totally understandable. There is only so much you can handle. Honestly, we can’t do every activity our homeschool co-op provides because we are just simply too busy with other responsibilities.
We are apart of a co-op group called Classical Conversations that meets once a week and we learn the new material for this specific curriculum. My kids love seeing their friends and I pray their friendships grow into something long-lasting and fruitful. We are also involved in local sports, Trail Life, and church activities. That is it for now and I know as the kids get older they will become more active in what they are interested in. But let’s not forget that their family comes first and that should be their primary influence. We want our kids to be mentored primarily by their parents and elders, not each other.
3. How to decide on a curriculum?
This is probably the hardest thing to do. I recently listened to a podcast A Delectable Education about curriculum choices. They were talking about how a particular homeschool mom felt like she was in a paddle boat with only one paddle and going in no direction. This feeling is what many moms have felt at one point or another. I truly believe you will find relief if you figure out your homeschool philosophy. I just recently figured out my homeschool philosophy and will be making several changes to our homeschool day going forward and things will start to fall into place. The homeschool curriculum world has grown exponentially and the resources are at our fingertips in each direction. However, The curriculum choices are astronomical and there is way too many to pick and choose from. So I just sought out other like-minded homeschool moms and asked what they were using. Some of the curriculum I liked and some I didn’t see working well for my family. There has been times where I purchased a curriculum and saw it was not a good fit for our schooling philosophy. Thankfully, Facebook has a homeschool marketplace groups where you can buy or sell used curriculum and not invest as much as a new curriculum. We will be switching curriculums this fall and I am super excited!
4. What curriculum do you use?
We are currently using Classical Conversations as our main curriculum which covers the subjects Math, Science, History, Art, Music Appreciation, Geography, Latin, and English. With Classical Conversations you have to add in a math and reading curriculum.
Math: we are going through Singapore for my 2nd grader and Abeka K for my kindergartner.
Reading: My Kindergartner is going through the book Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. My 2nd grader is going through Abeka Phonics, Reading and Spelling.
We have not added any other supplemental materials to our homeschool as of now, but I am making a transition to include Charlotte Mason’s methods in our homeschooling. We will be switching from Abeka to The Good and the Beautiful. A nature study will be added to our day along with narration and read alouds!
5. Why Did you decide to homeschool?
God has placed in me a desire to homeschool my children. He has equipped me and my family with the means of being able to stay at home and educate my kids. I myself had a Christ centered education growing up and I know personally the benefits of the kind of education that makes God a priority. My husband and I want to provide our kids with an education that will challenge them and allow them to grow at their own pace. We want our kids to love learning and learn how to think and discern on their own. At Homegrown Learners she says, “We have to fight for our child’s hearts and minds. If we don’t win, our culture will.”
6. Where do I fit in “me time” when choosing the path of education?
Me time is SO important. We can’t forget that as educators of our children we must allow ourselves “me time”. We are responsible for their education and that can be stressful carrying that huge burden, but we must take time for ourselves. I have discovered that after lunch when our bellies are full we all go to our beds or a quiet place and rest. I usually take the couch or my bed and read a good book. My kids will go to their beds most of the time and read or color or even take a nap. We usually take about 30 minutes to an hour of rest time and then we are getting up and taking care of things around the house. Sometimes I don’t rest time due to piles and piles of laundry but I try to let those things go most days and set aside time for rest.
Also, as home educators we are around little ones all day and we are in desperate need of adult interaction. I make it a point to schedule time out with my girlfriends or a moms bible study that gets me out of the house and allows me time for personal growth and growing relationships with other women.