Now more than ever, parents find themselves managing their child’s home-based education. While homeschooling has a wide range of benefits, it can be quite challenging not only for the parents but for students as well. Especially for students who are used to the traditional physical class setup.
What to read in this article:
Story of a homeschooling mama
Homeschooling tips for beginners
The Unprepared Homeschooling Momma – What now?
I never imagined myself to be homeschooling. But, here I am, about to finish one school year of homeschooling my 5-year old.
Homeschooling tips for beginners | Image from Mommy Lady
Pia had more than a year of traditional classroom exposure. She went to play school for two months and a whole school year of face-to-face learning for Level 1. Who would’ve thought that this pandemic would turn most (if not all) mothers to homeschooling mommas?
I, for one, was not really prepared to go through homeschooling. I thought to myself, “Maybe this won’t be so difficult. I’ll just follow the guide.” But who was I kidding? From printing the worksheets, preparing resources, doing arts and crafts projects down to keeping a toddler focused and interested, it was a circus parade.
It was a good thing that I was not working in a regular job anymore. I was at home 24/7 but my hands weren’t completely free because I had a full-time online job as a content writer. So technically, I’m a stay-at-home mom trying to juggle homeschooling, working, keeping the little humans alive, cleaning the house, doing the laundry and so on… you know the drill!
Homeschooling tips for beginners
Question is, how did I manage to do all these (and actually do more than just survive)? I’m sharing this piece to help mommas like me who have absolutely no idea how to start homeschooling.
1. Dedicate a learning space
Let’s be real here, learning and playing under the same roof can quickly escalate into chaos. I can easily say “been there, done that” as I casually pick up the paper cuttings from our lesson for the day. But seriously, the first thing you need to do is to find or create a dedicated space to facilitate effective learning.
A dedicated “learning hub” can also help keep things organized. Let your kids keep their books, art materials and other learning paraphernalia in one space.
2. Follow a daily schedule
This has helped me immensely. And I believe the routine will also help our kids feel that they are following a schedule.
While homeschooling opens a wonderful dose of flexibility and spontaneity to a child’s education, it’s easy to get distracted and be off-tracked without routine and a clear structure.
It’s a known fact that children thrive when they have routine and structure. Although I’m not really a stickler with time, I see to it that we start or finish our lesson between 10am-12nn.
3. Take learning beyond the modules
As much as possible, try to incorporate the child’s lesson for the day into conversations or real life applications. For example, if we learned about fractions (halves and wholes this morning), I can try and let her see actual halves and wholes by showing her how fruits are sliced. A great segue to her afternoon snacks!
I really believe that homeschooling is all about meaningful segues. This is one of the techniques that helps Pia retain the lessons and makes it easier for her to relate what she learned in real life.
4. Take your patience to whole new level
Trying to teach a toddler needs a lot of love and patience. There are times when I find myself repeating myself again and again and again…
My inner dragon is waiting to spew fire but I need to smile, grit my teeth and carry on with the lesson.
Getting mad at your kid for not being able to understand or grasp the lesson right away is a big no-no. As a BS Psychology graduate, I know how important and fragile the learning process is.
As much as possible, let’s try to keep homeschooling sessions a fun and interesting time. Children need to feel that learning is a safe space and not a source of stress or fear.
5. Find support from fellow homeschoolers
You don’t have to go through the anxiety or worries of homeschooling alone. Talk to your husband, your friends or fellow homeschoolers to get the load off your shoulders or get some useful tips and tricks.
Finding a reliable support group will not only make you feel at ease but you will also learn a lot of valuable tips and strategies to make homeschooling more fun and easy.
At the end of the day, there’s no actual right or wrong way to teach a child. The important thing is that you and your child both put in an effort to learn. Be flexible, be supportive, have room for imperfections and mistakes. Life is not perfect and homeschooling doesn’t need to be.
Ease up, mommas! We got this!
About the author
Mom of Pia, juggling motherhood, work and my endless food cravings. Work-at-home momma, foodie, oilbularya \| needs hibernation once in a while.