“Me-time” and the homeschooling mom

Written by Purva Brown of The Classical Unschooler

The concept of “me-time” gets a bad rap these days.

Many associate it with a “spoilt generation” asking for more, more, more. Some consider it selfish.

But I contend that every homeschooling mom needs time for and to herself.

The why of me-time

I remember the first time I mentioned the concept on my Facebook page. The idea got a torrent of criticism. I couldn’t help but wonder if the reaction was more for the actual term “me-time” than for the idea of it.

Perhaps we need a different label.

Maybe we should rename it “down time.” And we should emphasize that this is not time for ourselves in a selfish, me-first kind of way but in a “I’m still available, but I’m recharging my batteries” manner.

Motherhood takes a lot out of a woman. Add homeschooling to that and it’s no wonder we’re tired all the time.

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Balance and flexibility for homeschooling parents

Written by Kara S. Anderson

Growing up, I was a competitive figure skater, which meant I spent hours each day on ¼-inch thin blades, tracing intricate figures, spinning in neat circles or landing jumps after multiple rotations in the air.

In addition to our time spent on the ice, my fellow skaters and I took other classes, including ballet. The idea was that jumps and spins were fine, but without grace and artistry, they were simple perfunctory.

Skaters needed to hold their hands in a pleasing way. They needed to tilt their heads just so.

And they needed to be flexible.

What I learned spending 12 years of my life freezing my toes off is that balance is good, but it’s nothing without its partner in crime, flexibility.

I think about this sometimes as a homeschooling mom.

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For a happier homeschool, stop saying these 7 things

Written by Melissa Camara Wilkins

Right now, I am staring at my computer screen, thinking about all the reasons I can’t write these words to you. I’m too tired. My thoughts won’t come together, they keep shimmying away when I’m not looking (not unlike my preschooler at bedtime).

My ideas might not even be important enough to share with you. I just can’t do it.

That is what I am thinking. I just can’t. That’s my story.

But some stories are true, and others are just stories.

We read a lot of Mo Willems books around here, and lately Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs has been on read-and-repeat mode.

Do you know what the moral of that story is? The marvelous Mo writes: “If you ever find yourself in the wrong story, leave.”

That story about me not being able to write to you right now? That is the wrong story.

Are you living in the wrong story?

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Homeschooling like it’s my job

Written by Shawna Wingert of Not the Former Things.

The past few months have been a little rocky around here.

Because, you know, life.

This has been doubly true for our homeschool.  Two months after starting our new school year, we still are trying to get into some semblance of a routine.

These difficulties have challenged me to not only look at what I am expecting of my boys, but what I am expecting of myself.

Over the past few weeks, I have been trying something that has completely changed my perspective on helping my kiddos learn.

I am homeschooling like it’s my job.

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The ABCs of homeschooling older kids (and ourselves)

Written by Hannah Vanderpool of Praying with One Eye Open

I’ve homeschooled my three kids from the beginning of their little lives, and I treasure the memories we share from our years at home together.

It wasn’t all delight-led learning, of course. I look back with regret on impatient words I’ve spoken; times when my expectations for my kids weren’t reasonable.

Overall, though, homeschooling is one of the best decisions we ever made.

But my kids are teenagers now, and, if I’m honest, I’m not having a lot of fun these days. Oh, we still enjoy one another (most of the time), and we don’t fantasize about going to brick and mortar school (usually).

We eat dinner together and take walks in the park. But the things that made homeschooling enjoyable for me in earlier days have largely fallen by the wayside.

For instance, my teens don’t want me to read to them anymore. They’ll sit patiently if I insist on doing it, but while they used to delight in read-alouds, now they forbear them.

Also? They don’t want me to sit beside them and help solve problems except once-in-a-while. They don’t ask my opinion as often as they used to, and when they do, they sometimes ignore it.

Increasingly, they need me in the same way I need a plumber or firefighter–in case of emergency.

And I don’t like it.

What’s a mom like me to do when my current role looks more like a springboard and less like a teacher? And what if I loved being a teacher? What if it feels like everyone in the house is moving up and moving on except me?

I’ve decided what I need most, right now, is to homeschool myself. I need to remember my ABCs.

[Read more…]

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