I always tell people that homeschool has its seasons, and some seasons are easier than others.
Some homeschool seasons are filled with joy and exploration and ease and satisfaction. Other seasons are riddled with power struggles, tears, and utter exhaustion.
The good news is, seasons change. So, if you find yourself in an icky homeschool season right now, rest assured things will get easier. They always do!
No matter which season you find yourself in right now, I am sharing three bold moves that can shake up your homeschool today.
3 Bold Moves to Shake Up Your Homeschool Today!
Do you need a change in your homeschool?
Do you feel like your routine is stuck in a rut? Are you looking for less overwhelm? Would you like to imbue a little more joy and a lot more connection?
Keep reading, my friend!
Shake up your homeschool today by starting with the fun stuff
Do you know those homeschool must-dos that you wake up to every morning, day after day? I’m talking about those items that you feel you must complete in order to have a successful homeschool day:
These must-dos are different for each homeschooler, but I am willing to bet most of us have them. And, if we are being honest with ourselves, most of the power struggles we have with our children center around these pressing items.
Would you like more cooperation?
More connection with your kiddos?
I know this may seem counterintuitive, but I want to suggest that you put the fun first.
Yes, even before the math.
When we prioritize play in our homeschool, we are speaking the language of children.
Play is crucial for children (and research shows it’s good for adults, too!).
Not only that, but by playing with your children you are building that connection. You are sparking joy.
Do you know what happens when kiddos are connected and content?
They return the favor. Your kiddos will listen a little more carefully to your words. They will cooperate. Your kiddos will work to make you smile because you made them smile.
It’s a win-win, homeschool mama!
Related: Do you want to play more in your homeschool, but you don’t know where to begin? Check out our gameschooling resource page for oodles of tips, tricks, and resources.
Shake up your homeschool today by letting your child take the reigns
I know this might sound scary, but it works like a charm.
Sometimes, as parents, we can get stuck in a “NO” frame of mind. I don’t know why it happens. Maybe it’s because we are peppered with questions all day long, but we start to auto-respond.
“Hey, mum! Can I…?”
And before the words are even out of that sweet little mouth, we have a “no” at the ready. I am guilty of this, too, especially when we are in a difficult homeschool season.
But here’s the thing…
By saying “yes”, we can imbue joy and boost connection with our kiddos. I am not suggesting anything crazy here, but sometimes it’s okay to relax and say yes. It feels good!
Related: Have you ever heard of the book “Yes Day”? It’s so good. Click here to see what happened when we had a Yes Day of our own!
So, how can we apply this to our homeschool routine? It’s simple!
Why not ask your kiddos what they’d like to learn about?
Hold a family meeting and brainstorm some wild ideas. If there were no rules, what would they like to learn about?
What rabbit holes would they like to dive down? Get a piece of butcher paper, tape it to the wall, leave markers out, and let your kids brainstorm ideas throughout the day!
Do you know what happens when you let the kids take the homeschool wheel now and then?
Learning abounds! When children are “allowed” to learn about what they are passionate about, it sticks!
And you don’t need to feel like you’ve lost your homeschool way here, homeschool mama.
Simply put together a lazy unit study around a current passion.
With a little creativity, you can easily whip up a lazy unit study that will tick off all those all-important homeschool boxes!
Shake up your homeschool today by foregoing the plans and writing an after-plan instead
Okay, I am about to suggest another scary idea.
Are you ready?
Sometimes, in order to really shake things up and create change in our homeschool, we need to stop planning all the things.
At least for a little while.
Because those plans put place pressure to perform on our shoulders. They weigh us down and take up much-needed and already too crowded brain space.
I know it might sound scary. And it might even seem a little crazy, but I want you to put that planner away for a week and see what happens.
The reality is, children are really good at learning and exploring and being incredibly creative.
In fact, they are waaaaay better at this than we are!
Do you see that collage above? It has photos of children being active, building, creating, exploring. Not a single one of those activities was my idea!
Do you know what I see when I look at those photos? I see:
These are all images of my children learning on their own… and, sometimes, with trash or recycling, if we are being completely honest!
Do you know what else I see when I look at those photos?
I see joy.
Those kiddos are happily engaged and learning and smiling. And they are doing it on their own, in their own way.
Related: Would you like to learn how to ditch that schedule and embrace a homeschool lifestyle? Read more here!
I am not suggesting that you stop recording what you accomplished in your homeschool.
Instead, I am suggesting that maybe you write it down after it happens. Stop planning an entire week on Sunday night. Put the planner away… until the kids are in bed. And then, write down what happened that day.
Yes, after it happened. I’m talking about after-planning.
This after-planning may open your eyes to a world of learning that you didn’t see happening!
Do you need help getting started? You might want to incorporate a free app called Seesaw, or even your Instagram account!
Read more here:
- How to Make a Digital Portfolio with the Seesaw App
- How to Make a Homeschool Portfolio with Instagram
Shake up your homeschool by relaxing…
As homeschool moms, we can get lots in the must-dos, to-dos, and what-should-we-dos.
Sometimes, we just need to relax.
We need to breathe, shut the computer, put the planner aside, and look at the amazing kiddos standing right before us. And then we need to be with them. To chat with them about their great ideas. We need to say yes more. We need to explore and play and have fun.
So much learning happens when we just relax and let it!
Are you looking for more homeschool inspiration and resources?
Now, it’s your turn. Tell me: What would you add to this list? Share here!
Cait co-hosts The Homeschool Sisters Podcast and is co-founder of Raising Poppies, a community for parents of gifted and twice-exceptional children. Cait is also founder of the Family Book Club at My Little Poppies, a fantastic community of book-loving parents and the Gameschool Community at My Little Poppies, a vibrant community of gameschoolers.
Cait is a contributing writer for Simple Homeschool. Her work has also appeared on The Huffington Post, The Mighty, Scary Mommy, GeekMom, and many others. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram
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