I spoke with friend and homeschool veteran, Shelley, to gather tips for parents who will have to teach their kids from home for the first time this semester. Not only has she homeschooled her four kids for the last 10 years, she has extensive education in Child Development and Education and a master’s degree in Educational Therapy. After reading her tips, please be sure to follow her on Facebook @kidsfirstedtherapy for more education wisdom.
Homeschool Tips from a Veteran
#1 – Consider strengths and styles
Know your child’s learning style, strengths, and weaknesses. Know your comfort with teaching the various learning styles, your preferences, and goals for your kids. This is essential to knowing which type of curriculum will be the best fit for both you and your child. If you choose activities based on arts and crafts projects but your child (or you) don’t learn best that way, you will not have harmony in your homeschool.
#2 – Plan your day with extra time built in
Plan out your homeschool day to encompass enough time to meet studying for subjects with some leniency for days that are not the most effective. Know (and expect) that you and your children will not work at 100% efficiency and build in time into your schedule to accommodate for that.
#3 – Flexibility is your friend
After you have your ideal plan for homeschool, know that you will have to be flexible. Some days are harder than others, some curricula will be discovered to not be a good fit for your family, interests may change, etc. Your ideal plan will not be followed perfectly. Be ready to flex and move with whatever life throws at you.
#4 – Work with other families
Connect with other homeschooling families to share learning (ie pods), field trips, etc. Consider which subjects could be easily done with another family. P.E. is always a good candidate for this structure. Homeschool is best in community rather than just at home by yourselves.
#5 – Think outside the box
Homeschool is not public school. All learning does not occur at the kitchen table. Think outside of the box for other activities that encompass and enhance learning. Those all count as minutes toward school.