Thursday, September 8, 2011

Back To School

As we launch into a fresh school year  I am reminded of some of the things that I had forgotten over the summer.

 We've been homeschooling a little over three years now, and by no means am I an expert, but I have figured out a few little strategies that work for us. 

Before I started homeschooling I talked to all the homeschooling moms that I knew.  I picked their brains and asked them questions, and followed them around looking for tips and pointers.  This is some of the wisdom I gleaned.

Mom should get an early start.  Even if your official school day doesn't start till ten o'clock it helps so much if you are up and dressed and have a handle on your day before you expect your children to start school.  Take it from someone who has tried to do school in her pajamas--it's not conducive to good learning.

Plan ahead for lunch.  Even if you just make sure there are ingredients for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on hand.  If you are distracted by trying to figure out what to feed your children as they are finishing up their last subject before lunch it doesn't make you a very helpful teacher.

Relax.  I know this seems silly, but sometimes I panic over my children not remembering something they learned yesterday.  Teaching is like building a brick wall you lay a brick, and spread some mortar, and then you lay another get the idea.

Don't compare yourselves to other homeschooling mom's.  What works for you might look totally different than what works for someone else.  I have a good friend who home schools in the afternoon, and although that would never work at my house she is very successful.  ( This also applies to curriculum by the way.)

Plan for some easier days.  You might do this by working extra a couple days a week, or just by including some days off on your calender.  It always amazes me how much more I feel like working after we have had a fun day.

Begin every day with prayer.  This year we have been taking turns praying before we start our school day.  I've been amazed at the things my boys pray about--asking God to help them remember their addition facts, and to help them concentrate.  Every day goes better if it's covered in prayer!