D is for Different

Recently, on a homeschool group I’m in, a Mom considering homeschooling asked a question that generated a lot of discussion.

“What’s a typical homeschool day look like?”

The responses all varied, but every experienced homeschool mom agreed that there’s truly no “typical” day.

You may homeschool with a strict schedule or you maybe be super flexible. It’s all about how your kids learn best and what works best for your family.

So, it made me ponder how homeschooling is different. Every day is different. Every child is different. And how you as the parent teach is different. One key part of successfully homeschooling is embracing the “different” and helping each child truly succeed.

For example. Here’s my schedule last week.

Monday: Homeschool co-op – leave house at 8. After co-op meet a potential renter over at our rental property. Home around 5:30.

Tuesday: Show house at 10. Run errands. Home at noon. Eat lunch. Do school.

Wednesday: Start school. Offer 2nd grader choice of staying home with Dad and doing her school or bringing it in the car. She opts for the car. Show house at 11. Run errands. Eat lunch out. Show house again at 1. Home around 2. Back out for piano lessons at 3. Finish school around 5.

Thursday: Morning meeting at 9. Home and start school at 11. Husband is hungry. Eat lunch, paint airplanes, take baths (to wash off paint). Finish school. Leave at 3 for ballet lessons.

Friday: Home all day, school done by noon.

Is my child learning? Yes! In fact, she learns more with all these interruptions. Sitting her down for 2 hrs straight and doing bookwork is tiring. But you do it in 30 minute sprints and she does better work and remembers more of what she’s learning.

Is any day typical? No, not really. But, that’s life. If she learned better by sitting down and doing it all at once, I would make more of an effort to do that. But since long sessions seems frustrating, I take the opportunities to break it up and keep her interested.

And I take advantage of something unique that homeschooling offers to my family. It lets my children live life with me. I’ve explained the concept of a rental property so many times this past few weeks – we have a rental that I’m finding new tenants for – and answered questions like, why would we let someone live in our house? If we own the house why don’t we live there? How do we own a house that we don’t live in? People pay us money to live in our house? I could just tell them about the concept of renting, but to see it in action, it’s more real to them.

So, if your homeschooling, embrace the different. Because every family is different. Every parent is different. Every child is different. And homeschooling lets you enjoy those differences.

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