"When you're feeling discouraged,..."
No matter how committed you are to homeschooling,....no matter how much you ENJOY your children, there are bound to be days when you feel discouraged and want to give up. It's no different than being a parent. When the work is hard, day-in and day-out, we can easily get discouraged. It's NOT the end of the world,....we just need a break!
To Renew You Heart and Soul:
- List your reasons for homeschooling. Think back to when you first began and any new reasons since then.
2. List any "possible" reasons for discouragement:
are you pre-menstral?
is family life extremely busy?
is your husband working late, or gone for days or weeks at a time?
do you have unrealistic expectations of yourself, and/or children?
3. Choose a topic of interest to all of you, then try a simple unit study.
- ENJOY EXPLORING a topic of interest, instead of doing workbooks!
4. Have a GAME DAY!
REMEMBER, the object of school is to LEARN,
but GAMES make learning FUN!
If your children enjoy games, incorporate them into each school day.
To play games with math facts, start with flash cards, have a quick quiz, play games for one hour, and you're finished with math! Children have FUN and won't dread flashcard review.
Triangle Flashcards make it easy to review addition and subtraction, or multiplication & division at the same time. It also shows the relationship between the two facts.
6. Go to the library and check out ALL the books you can find pertaining to one topic of interest, then have a Reading Day (or week).
7. Call to talk to a friend who's been homeschooling longer, or read a book of encouragement.
8. Gather the children and go for a WALK.
- If older children (12yrs. or older) are responsible to watch the younger ones, and you need a chance to sort your thoughts, or clear the cobwebs,....go for a walk, alone.
- Take the children to the park, and let them run off while you relax in the sun. When you feel rested, get up, laugh and play with them! Play together for exercise!
9. Go to the video store and rent some comedies!
Pick out side-splitters and LAUGH yourself SILLY!
10. Still can't shake The Blues? Cancel school for the day and work on what's bothering you, but make the day count. Try to think of what you "need", and do it!
- Ask God to show you everything that's making you feel overwhelmed
- Write down what is revealed AND the feelings involved with each one.
- Is there anything you can do about it? Write it down, do it, and let it go!
- If you're frustrated with someone else: write, turn it over, and try to forgive.
- You don't need to carry your own burdens. God will do it all for you!
11. Still can't shake The Blues?
Have a Teacher-In-Service Day
Cancel school, or have the kids do projects that will keep them occupied, not needing to interupt you.
Work on what's bothering you, but MAKE THE DAY COUNT.
Realize that you're only human. Your "on duty 24-7", and need some time off. Be good to yourself!
12. If the family's been busy and the house is a mess, have a Clean-Up Day.
- Everyone works together to get it done, and have a fresh start the next day.
- When the work is done, children can work independently on schoolwork, or projects, watch videos, or play QUIETLY.)
13. Do SOMETHING SPECIAL for yourself.
Mom deserves a break every once in a while, so find a sitter and...
- go to lunch with a friend
- window shop
- sit in a comfortable coffee shop and read a book
- journal your thoughts
- Sometimes, it doesn't take much to feel refreshed.
13. Continue journaling every day.
We often don't know what's wrong until we start writing about it:
"It's often darkest, just before dawn."
Homeschooling is an ENDURANCE RACE...NOT the 50 yard DASH!
Remember the story of the tortoise and the hare...
rushing doesn't always get us there "faster".
If these suggestions have encouraged you,
I hope you'll share them with others.