With the start of the holiday season, the school semester is coming to a close. If this is your first year of homeschooling your own children, your head is probably still spinning, and you are wondering if this was a wise choice. Never fear, you did make a wise choice in schooling your own children. Here are some insightful tips that will alleviate what might be known to many as "homeschool burnout." So if you are feeling overwhelmed, irritable and depressed at the start of the day, take to heart these three suggestions.
1. Remember, this is not public school
. Public school is the biggest hurdle parents face in homeschooling their children. It is surprising how parents remember attending public school themselves, so they think they have to fashion their homeschooling experience the same way. Not true. Homeschool is about pacing education to fit the needs of the child. If your children are not getting a concept, don't pull your hair out. Instead, slow down, take a break and try again. We don't have to keep up with anyone but ourselves. This is a huge change from what most parents are used to. Learning is supposed to be fun and enjoyable. Not all days are great, but better days lie ahead if we take it down a notch and not get stressed that we are not keeping up with the public school system.
2. Decompress once in a while
What does that mean? Decompressing is doing nothing school related which pressures you or your children. Take a break from the schedule and do something fun. Schedule in more field trips like visits to the library, museums, art galleries and Exploriums. These trips help children learn without even knowing it. Reading together or on their own also provides some down time. There are so many chapter book series which send children to adventures in their mind. Leisure reading is restful from a day's load of school assignments, and mom can take a break.
3. Inspire yourself
As the full-time teacher and mother to your children, you need to keep your spirits up and fill your own needs. Feeling the emotional "empty bucket" can only make homeschooling more difficult. Find some time during the days of homeschooling to fill your needs. Whether it's painting, sewing, reading, Pinterest or cooking; whatever it is you love to do - just do it. Homeschooling children is stressful at times, and moms need time to collect their thoughts and rest from the everyday schedule.
You know you love your children, but there is a time and place for everything. Don't put the guilt trip on yourself. This is greatly needed for a happy, healthy homeschool mom. Get your children used to the idea that Mom needs to rest and take a break. They need breaks, too, and will completely understand.
So don't fear or dread the days ahead. Parents homeschooling their children is the greatest accomplishment by far. Just do a little at a time. As you feel the pressure to get work done, pull back and avoid the burnout before it gets out of hand. Thoughts to quit or give up will disappear, and everyone in the family will be much happier.