As I entered my fourth homeschool year, I switched things up a little bit. This year is my first year schooling all of my children and adding in a few more subjects. Once I had all of our new curricula in my hands and the thought of adding a preschooler into the mix I knew that I couldn’t do it all. I knew that we were going to have to reevaluate our routine.
That’s one of the best things about homeschooling, we have the opportunity to change things whenever we want. Homeschooling is so flexible and can be changed to meet your current season’s needs.
Some of these changes were practical changes that fit this season we are in and others happened because I grew in my skills and confidence and felt they weren’t as needed.
Things I’m Doing Differently This School Year
The teacher’s books don’t own you, they are there for support and guidance. They’re there to help you teach a hard concept, to inspire your creativity with projects and to keep you going forward. But they are not there to be a slave master. You are the boss of your homeschool. Once I stopped worrying about getting everything in that my teacher’s manual suggested or in their time frame our school year went much more smoothly and I was much calmer.
I did this for 3 solid years. Each year I decreased how much of it we actually accomplished. So much of it was taking up ridiculous amounts of time that we just didn’t have. I didn’t want to spend so much time on morning time so I nixed the whole idea. I may start it, more lightly, with our preschooler but I am enjoying my time without it for now.
Now this one was a hard choice to make but it just flowed best for our family. I do like to start our school day off in God’s Word but for our family dynamics, all of our morning time stuff works best to close out our school day. I stopped feeling so bad about this because my husband reads Proverbs with the boys in the morning before he heads out the door for work so technically our day is still starting in the Word.
Within 20 minutes or so of finishing breakfast, our boys are starting their school work. No longer am I giving them an hour or more to get their wiggles out before we start school. We did start that way at the beginning of the school year but I was finding I had 2 very unmotivated boys and therefore we were doing school all day sometimes until 4,5,7pm. It was outrageous. Once I started making them launch right into their work they got it done much more timely.
When they were younger they needed that time to get their energy out. It was beneficial and we didn’t do school all day long. This year it wasn’t going the same. Once we made the switch they were motivated to get their work done so that they could play! It was the best decision and change we made this year!
We are thriving this school year, it started out rocky but I really feel like we got into a new groove much more quickly and we are having fewer behavior issues, we are all enjoying our days and we’ve let go of what wasn’t working for us. It’s freeing to know that you don’t have to do it all or keep up with the Joneses. It’s okay to change things that don’t work for you. Do what works for your family, relax and enjoy the journey!