No matter how long you’re homeschooling, it is only natural to want to go back to change something done in the beginning or readjust your strategy after struggling a year or two.
By sharing some of the common mistakes I made in my journey, hopefully, I can prepare you and spare you some of the stress, fatigue, and feelings of guilt I encountered.
5 Top Mistakes of New or Struggling Homeschoolers
Mistake 1. Setting Unrealistic Goals and Standards.
To best explain what unrealistic goals are, it’s better to explain what is the definition of realistic. It means to see things or be aware of the way they really are. Not the way we imagine they should be.
After having a newborn, it’s not realistic to believe we are going to hop right back into a normal schedule no matter how much we feel our children are behind.
It is it realistic to believe in one year of homeschooling we will accomplish all that we set out to accomplish? No.
Goals are a must, but measure your circumstances realistically and you will not be deterred when things don’t go as planned.
Mistake 2. No Written Plan.
It does not matter if you lesson plan by writing out your plans, track lesson plans on a computer program, check off activities done in your boxed curriculum or journal after your day, write it down.
Why? Because if we can’t see what we have done, then how can you see what has been achieved?
How can you measure and see where adjustments need to be made? How clear can it be in your mind what your goals are?
See it written and follow it!
Mistake 3. Modeling our school after the school we left.
It sounds crazy, uh? Fear is a gripping force. At times, it can make us set up our educational system by following one that has failed because we are afraid of failure.
I won’t bash the public school system because there are many caring compassionate teachers.
However, if the system was not working for us – why do we want to pattern our day after it?
Get off the public school treadmill and feel homeschool freedom.
Mistake 4. Comparisons.
If we are not careful, our whole homeschool journey is filled with comparing our child to another child. Sometimes it can even be siblings.
If we are not comparing our children to each other, then we might be comparing ourselves to other mothers. If we can’t find some problem there, then we even examine our husbands. Does Suzy Homeschooler have a better or more supportive husband of homeschooling than I do? After all he does teach the kids sometimes.
Those types of negative emotions robs of the true enjoyment of being satisfied. We need to be content with the circumstance we have been given and not fall victim to the competitive spirit of this world.
Education is as UNIQUE as each family.
Mistake 5. No education for the Educator.
Many times I’ve heard and have seen parents will go to great lengths and great costs to make sacrifices for their children’s education. But the greatest gift besides life we can give our children, is OURSELVES.
From the smallest piece of knowledge like tying a shoe to the most significant issues like the existence of a magnificent Creator, we have the privilege of teaching our children.
Do not underestimate or cheat yourself of the time, knowledge, and resources you need to do this. We can’t pass on to our children what we do not know.
Strive to become a better educator, better teacher, and better student. Use some of the resources you have each year to empower yourself with education, information, and knowledge.
You’ll also find these articles empowering:
- 8 Colossal Pitfalls of Homeschooling in the WHAT IF World
- 7 Homeschool Lies I Want to Tell My Younger Self
- Public School is NOT Free! (but neither is homeschool)