The following post is from contributing writer Jen @ Forever, For Always, No Matter What
Homeschooling is a wonderful blessing, but homeschooling is not an easy road. There have been plenty of people who have started and stopped for a variety of reasons. Here are some reasons that homeschooling can fail and how you can avoid them.
1. No Support – Homeschooling is not easy. Perhaps you are trying to homeschool without the support of your spouse, perhaps it’s your parents or your in-laws, swimming upstream is tough and frankly it can wear you out!
2. Isolated – Not knowing another “IRL” (In Real Life) homeschooling family or at least another homeschooling mom can make life challenging. On-line connections are wonderful and have been such a blessing to me, but never getting to hang out face to face with another friend who shares your same lifestyle can be tough.
3. Too Busy – Having the days and the weeks filled up for every child doesn’t leave much time for much book learning, or much time down time for mom or the child. That can lead to burn out quick. It’s okay for kids to have “nothing” to do once in a while.
4. Trying to do School at Home – Trying to recreate public school at home not only isn’t going to work very well, frankly it’s not that much fun. So, leave your hair net for the real lunch ladies and carve your own course.
5. No Structure, No Organization – Just because you don’t have bells ringing every 45 minutes and your kids don’t have to raise your hands to go to the bathroom, doesn’t mean that structure and organization aren’t necessary. Particularly if you are a mom of many, having a routine is essential.
6. Not Paying Attention to How A Child Learns – Trying to fit a square peg in a round hole is going to leave you banging your head on the table. Take some time to figure out how your child best learns and proceed accordingly, it will make all the difference.
7. Unrealistic Expectations – Homeschooling has gotten some good and well deserved attention over the years for some of the students who have done exceptionally well. We all aren’t homeschooling little Einsteins. That’s okay. Our goal should be to help educate our children to their fullest potential, whatever that may be.
8. Not Giving it Enough Time – Bailing too early. A semester, perhaps even one year may not be enough time to see if homeschooling is a good fit or not. Most likely it will take longer for your family to find a good rhythm.
9. Switching Curriculum Constantly – Purchasing new curriculum constantly is not only a financial drain, it’s a drain to the teacher and the students. It takes extra brain power to get the feeling of a new curriculum. If you are constantly stopping and starting, you are never giving yourself or your students the opportunity to really dig in. Here’s a little secret: there is no perfect curriculum!
10. It’s Run it’s Course – This is definitely not a “failure.” Life holds different seasons for all of us, and maybe at some point homeschooling has run it’s course for one or more of our children. Life circumstance change, children change, we change. It’s okay to acknowledge that what was once working well is no longer working. Homeschooling allows for so much flexibility, that means starting and stopping as well.
Jen blogs at Forever, For Always, No Matter What. She has one amazing husband and six eclectic kids. Stop in for a visit as she blogs about their Catholic faith, homeschooling and adoption, all while trying to fit in exercise and healthy eating. Jen can also be found on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, and Pinterest.