There are hundreds maybe even thousands of options when it comes to homeschooling. If you talk with a homeschooling parent, they will tell you all about the many different books, classes, and activities their family loves. How can you narrow things down if you are just starting out? How can you make changes throughout your own homeschool journey without feeling guilty? Is homeschooling taking over every aspect of your life? Time to be true to yourself.
A Curriculum that Interests YOU
When you walk into your favorite restaurant you know exactly what you like. You probably won’t order raw squid if just the sight of it makes your skin crawl. You know this about yourself. Finding a curriculum that interests you as the teacher will make it that much easier to facilitate for your kids. Hands-on learning is engaging but I know that for me I can’t handle projects on a daily basis. I feel out of control and overwhelmed within minutes. So, I have chosen a more traditional path for our curriculum. That’s what works for me.
What Draws Your Attention
I am a visual person. Colors, fonts, spacing, and layout on a page make a difference to me. A curriculum might be great but if you don’t like to look at it or if just looking at it feels confusing, how are you going to use it every day with your kids? Think of what might capture your attention when it comes to curriculums and Co-Ops for you as the teacher. Are you more tech-savvy? An online program like GSN might be a great fit. Check out GSN: https://globalstudentnetwork.com. What is comfortable for you?
Stop, Think, Evaluate
We love to shop! Used curriculum sales are fun! Homeschool convention sales are exciting! Before you invest in new books and materials stop, think, and evaluate if those items work for you. Ask yourself if you will be able to facilitate that new curriculum before you buy it. If you aren’t sure, write down the info or take a picture of the books with your phone and later on evaluate for yourself if those new items are a good fit for you before purchasing. The same goes for listening to well-meaning advice from other homeschool parents. What might work for them does not mean it will be a good fit for you. Evaluate first!
Homeschooling requires motivation. Your child will not magically become educated. Your motivation or lack of motivation in providing an education for your kids is going to directly impact them. So, what motivates you? Do you need accountability? Would being a part of a homeschool community encourage you? Do your kids need the structure of an online classroom or a weekly program to motivate them to complete assignments? Not sure what motivates you? Take an online quiz: https://quiz.gretchinrubin.com.
YOU as a Person
Starting homeschooling does not change who you really are. There are relationships, hobbies, passion projects, and goals that are still important to you as a person. I’ve seen moms drop everything for their families. They homeschool and drive their kids to activities but rarely feel fulfilled on a more personal level. YOU are still a person who is valuable and who needs to be nurtured and who needs to grow. But guess what? If you want to be nurtured or grow you are the one who has to make that happen. What does that look like to you?
Staying true to yourself has to be an intentional pursuit. Your homeschooling needs to work first for you, then for your kids. Take time to make a few lists. Get your ideas in front of you so you can actually see what tweaking your homeschooling might look like or what top three personal interests you would like more of in your life. Stay true to yourself!
Global Student Network is a leading provider of a variety of online homeschool curriculum to fit any learning style. Click here to learn more about the curriculum offered through Global Student Network.
Sarah Brutovski is a homeschool mom of three children. She grew up just down the street from where she and her husband are raising their family now in rural Upstate New York. When she is not teaching her kids, grocery shopping, or drinking coffee you might find her training for a half marathon, escaping for a morning at the beach, or chatting on the phone with one of her four siblings. Sarah loves writing on her blog sarahswritingcafe.blogspot.com and currently teaches creative writing at her kids’ weekly co-op.