Having confidence in homeschooling doesn’t always come easy. In fact, most veteran homeschooling moms agree that confidence is something that developed over time. The question then becomes …
“How can parents find confidence in their homeschool journey?”
Whether you’re a new homeschooler or have been educating your kids at home for a while, here are some tried and true tips you can begin implementing today.
5 Ways to Boost Your Confidence in Homeschooling
#1: Yes, you are doing enough.
Although this is an encouragement statement, it is also a tip to remind you to not do too much. Traditional schools will make you think you need to homeschool 8 hours a day, using 5 or more textbooks, tests, quizzes, and so on. For the majority of families that choose home education, that rigorous schedule simply does not work.
What does that rigorous schedule really do?
It actually steals the fun out of learning. One important thing to keep in mind here is your ability to accommodate your children’s unique developmental needs (and their journey).
Sometimes it can be hard to stay clear of the “new shiny thing,” so ask yourself if “the shiny thing” will benefit you and your children’s homeschooling experience, or harm it. If all you use are living books, a notebook journal, and educational documentaries, that is fantastic. And while you’re gaining confidence in how you want to home educate your children and what to use, remember the next tip…
#2: Don’t worry about doing everything perfect.
Perfection often leaves out the need for personal experience and individualized education. It focuses more on academic competence and checking off the boxes. That checklist mentality and conveyor belt system of schools.
The truth of the matter is, there is no perfect way to homeschool. One huge mistake I see homeschooling parents make (especially newer moms) is trying to mold their homeschool to a public school education. It’s almost like second nature, and rightfully so.
When you’ve spent 12+ years in a traditional school system and setting, the idea of what education looks like becomes ingrained in you. Then, you attempt to mold your children’s education after that conveyor belt system.
One great idea to help you navigate perfectionism is to set educational and homeschool goals for your children. Celebrate each milestone reached and focus on building confident homeschoolers.
#3: Focus on doing the right things.
You’ll encounter tons of ups and downs along your homeschooling journey, but in doing so, all you can do is make the best decision for your family. Sometimes doing the right thing involves joining a home school group. In other seasons, your children may thrive from taking more field trips. Finding a virtual homeschooling community could also be something beneficial.
The biggest goals here are building your own family relationships. That’s what will last a lifetime. Also, consider proper child development while making the best choice for your children. Making the best choice for your family and not comparing to others will lead to a love for learning and raising leaders who can critically think for themselves.
#4: Reduce the anxiety.
Both parents and children alike can have a lack of confidence when it comes to homeschooling. This is especially true if your child spends any time in public (or private) school. It’s safe to say that a lack of confidence branches from a low self-esteem regarding your ability to educate your children at home. I hear this over and over again. It is one of the top things a homeschool mom battles with and, often times, battles alone.
Yes, it can be hard work trying to come up with a homeschool schedule, pick the right curriculum, and ensure you aren’t doing your children a disservice. However, the first step is this. Embrace your own abilities to teach your children. Next, make it a daily practice to release the self doubt and welcome in all the amazing things that come with homeschooling.
Speaking of which, my last tip is…
#5: Remember the benefits of homeschooling.
At the end of the day, it is a privilege to teach your own children. There are many parents who do not have the opportunity, nor do they even want it. Although homeschooling wasn’t always popular, it has continued to be one of the best forms of education for a child. Some of the most popular people that have walked this earth were homeschooled. Did you realize it’s a concept that dates back to biblical times?
In the moments when you’re feeling overwhelmed or not less confident, jot down a few reasons why you homeschool. Or, grab your gratitude journal and read all the good things God has done for you and your family.
The biggest difference between a confident homeschooling mom and one who struggles is seeing the worth and value you are giving to your children. Always keep in mind that your homeschooling journey will NOT look like the next family and how you choose to do it is totally up to you. As you continue in educating your children at home, your confidence level will grow.
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