Now that the school year is wrapping up and we’ve been homeschooling now since December, I have a lot of people who have asked, “How’s homeschooling going?”
Well, I love it and sometimes I hate it as well.
Thankfully, I hate it less than the times that I love it. The lack of personal time and personal space sometimes get to me. The kids get on each other nerves because they are always in each other’s personal space as well. Funny story…One of the children had a doctor’s appointment and I showed up with all the children. The receptionist shot me a very annoyed look and said, “We usually prefer for parents to find alternate care for children who are not being seen.” I replied, “Ohhhhh, I usually prefer that as well.” Seriously? Did she honestly think that I wanted to stuff all of the children in an 8’ X 8’ exam room? I can’t exactly leave the others at home, or out in the hot car (like one mother recently did for a job interview out West where she was arrested for it). There are not often sitters available at the drop of a hat in the middle of the day when the kids need to go to the doctor’s office. We do what we do out of necessity and we make it work.
Something else I hate about homeschooling is being the bad-guy-disciplinarian. I liked it so much better when the teacher or principal at the school was the “bad guy.” I’d rather just play with the kids and love on them. However, sometimes in homeschooling you have to step up and be tough or no work would be accomplished because the kids would be out of control.
Other than no personal space and being the bad guy, there is so much I love about homeschooling! I love having a shorter school day. We generally work 9am-2pm and during that time I set the children free from 12pm-1pm for lunch/recess!! They can eat, play or check their email during that time. I love that the kids can play and be kids. I love not piling in the car each day for a commute. I love the money saved on gas! I love that their grades have gone up. I love that all the children’s standardized testing scores went up this year as well. Our ADHD child can do his/her homework upside down, on the floor, outside, in his/her bedroom, by the cat, or anywhere, as long as it gets done and as long as he/she circles his/her answers so I know what to grade. The ADHD child is actually an A-student and quite brilliant and I had no idea until I homeschooled the child just how brilliant the child is! He/she just needs to do things in his/her own way. We love the freedom of taking our vacation breaks whenever we want. For example, we had scheduled our Spring Break on a certain week, but when we saw the weather forecast said rainy and 50 degrees we were able to reschedule it for the following week when it was in the 80’s and sunny. It was nice because hardly anyone was at the beach because everyone else had Spring Break at a different time. The kids report that they enjoy wearing whatever they want each day. Most of the time they prefer to wear shorts, t-shirts and flip flops. I like choosing their curriculum to meet their individual needs. For example, I am using 3 different curriculums with Matthew right now and it’s working out perfectly for him. I like spending one-on-one time with the kids because I feel like I know exactly what they’re learning and also exactly what their strengths and weaknesses are. I like getting to know each one of my kids’ unique personalities. I really am blessed to have the most delightful children on the planet!
Though there are smidgens of days that I don’t enjoy with homeschooling, overall it’s a rewarding and positive experience. I’m doing my best to cherish these days with my babies. All too soon they’ll all be grown and gone from the nest and then I can have all the personal space I want. Besides, I’m hoping that they’ll remember all the good times we’ve had together and forget the times I had to be the “bad guy.”