I’m very new to homeschooling, first of all. I homeschooled one of my daughters for kindergarten a couple of years ago, but this is my first year homeschooling all of my school-age children. I have one in 6th grade, one in 2nd, a kindergartener, and a preschooler taking Coloring/Scribbling 101.
Now I told myself I wouldn’t blog about homeschooling until I had at least a few weeks of experience under my belt. Seven weeks have passed and while I know that hardly makes me an expert in the field of homeschooling, I do feel I can give an opinion of it if nothing else.
So here it is! At this point I can tell you two things about homeschooling:
1. It is one of the most difficult, most involved, most mentally challenging and exhausting things I have ever tried to do in my life. And…
2. I absolutely love it.
Now let me make it clear that I don’t absolutely love it absolutely every day! There are times I am incredibly overwhelmed and days when I am unbelievably tired and mentally drained by the time our school day is over. It’s not easy juggling my brain between 3 different children in 3 different grades and trying to occupy a fourth little guy who sometimes seems bent on disturbing school as much as possible.
Add to it that one of my children has what would be labeled a learning disability, but what I prefer to call a learning challenge. That’s a subject I plan to talk about at a later date, but I can tell you it often requires serious prayer and some major rethinking when it comes to my teaching approach. Lest the entire thing be too easy for me, of course….
Probably the greatest frustration homeschooling has presented to me overall is the readjusting of my routine. We do school at the kitchen table and most days I can’t wander far from there for several hours, so, needless to say, not much gets done in the rest of the house during that time. I do feel I’m able to accomplish more in my evenings than I used to, perhaps only because I have to, but on weeks when I surrender more than one of my precious evenings to some activity or another, things seem to start falling apart quickly. The laundry piles up and the clutter does, too, and before I know it I am far, far behind on the housework. This has been at the heart of my biggest “homeschooling meltdowns” thus far. I hope to get in the better swing of things as time goes on.
Someday I may write about what led me to homeschool in the first place. It was far more than our circumstances, let me tell you, because I was one of those who for years said I would never, ever homeschool. And I meant it!
But that’s not a subject for today. In closing, I’ll just tell you that in the past seven weeks I have had homeschooling days that did not go well, days when I questioned whether I was really able to tackle this job after all.
But I can also tell you there have been many, many times when we wrapped up our school day and I was more convinced than ever that this is what I was meant to do. I don’t know for how long; maybe until all of my kids graduate school, maybe not. But for now, I know this is what God wants me to do.
And I couldn’t be happier about it.