How decision fatigue is wearing down your homeschool (and 4 things you can do about it)

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Written by Sarah Mackenzie of Amongst Lovely Things.

It’s 11am. The twins are emptying the tea cupboard onto the floor, the 2 year-old is fussing, and I’m standing at the fridge, trying to decide what to make for lunch. Just then my 11 year-old walks into the room. “What should I be doing right now?”

As the volume of the din steadily rises, the 9 year-old whizzes past me, flinging his math book onto the kitchen counter and tossing a comment about making a break for the basement. Somebody pulls on my pant leg and I rub my head.

“Mom? What am I supposed to be doing?” She’s getting more persistent.

“I… don’t know,” I sigh, exasperated, “Just… we’ll figure it out later.”

Sound familiar? It’s a classic case of homeschooling mama decision fatigue, and I can predict it’s arrival in my house (and yours!) like clockwork every day of the week.

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Share your homeschool day in the life

dayinlifephotopicmo Written by Jamie Martin of Simple Homeschool and Steady Mom

Homeschooling doesn’t look the same for each family. But that’s one of the things that makes it great — it doesn’t have to!

During the past several weeks, we’ve been proud to share our fifth annual homeschool day in the life series — our largest ever!

We’ve heard from homeschool mom (and dads!) schooling between 1 and 7 kids, those who love unschooling, classical education, Waldorf, Leadership Education, or their very own styles that work for their families.

Those parents have given us a peek into their days, and we’ve been continuously reminded of the many different ways that people make homeschooling work.
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Diana’s homeschool day in the life (with a 5-year-old)


Written by Diana Stone of Diana Wrote

All homeschool days are unique – but ours are perhaps even more so than most. My daughter Bella is 5, and an unexpected only child. While so many of us (with good reason) scoff at the constant mention of socialization and homeschool, that issue bears a little more weight around here.

As a military family, we’ve watched many good friends move, while sharing memories with our families hundreds of miles away. I do think about my daughter’s relationships, both close and fleeting.


This fall, I struggled with the decision to homeschool just Bella.

In my mind, I’d always planned to homeschool with little ones underfoot, a baby strapped to me, laundry piling up. I work really well under pressure; even as a teacher I loved being busy and having a large classroom. Faced with a very independent learner, I felt helpless to know how to go about focusing all my effort on one.

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Anne’s homeschool day in the life (with a 4-, 7-, 9- and 11-year-old)


Written by Anne Bogel of Modern Mrs. Darcy.

None of our days look the same, but they all share a similar rhythm.

At 6:00 a.m., I’m usually the only one awake. (I’m thankful to finally be in a season where I’m up before my kids: it wasn’t always like that!) The first thing I do is head to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee.


I enjoy the quiet time and get an hour of writing in, then head out the door for a quick run.

The kids are just waking up when I get back. I hit the shower while Will gets breakfast started.

math is boring

After we say goodbye to Will, we finish getting ready, and then dive in to our schoolwork.

We call our brand of home education classical unschooling. Our curriculum is classical, but we’re pretty free-wheeling in our implementation. We also leave lots of room for self-directed learning and independent projects.

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Tsh’s worldschool day in the life (with a 4-, 7-, and 9-year-old)

Written by Tsh Oxenreider of The Art of Simple

Right now, I’m at a cafe with my almost ten-year-old, where she’s writing a blog post as her next writing project (topic: things for kids to do in Queensland, Australia). I’ve been furiously working on finishing my e-course while we have decent Internet, before we head to our next location: Sri Lanka.

There’s a certain irony to me contributing a post to Simple Homeschool’s day in the life series, because since we left the States on September 15, not one day has been the same.

We’re on a round-the-world trip that we’d planned for about five years, and at the time of this writing, we’re a few weeks shy of halfway through.

beijing family

Everything changed when we crammed our backpacks full of the gear we’d need for the next nine months, from our food to housing to day-to-day activities. (Thankfully, we didn’t need to adjust to schooling as a way of everyday, all day family life. We were already used to that.)


What has thrown me for a loop, however, is my need to adjust my expectations. My dear friend worldschooled and traveled with her family not too long ago, and she warned me that even though our kids will learn more than they ever could in a classroom setting, there will be days (weeks, months) when it won’t feel like it.

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