I’m certainly not an expert on homeschooling so this page is mostly intended to point you to the websites and resources that have helped me. I will also add “tips” as they come to me.
“The worst day of homeschooling is still better than the best day at public school.”
A friend, who was a former public school teacher, shared this with me. It’s not meant as a slam on teachers. I think most teachers do a tremendous job in often challenging situations. There is something to be said for private tutoring though, and that’s essentially what homeschooling is. Unlike a teacher who is forced to use the curriculum and textbooks issued to her, a homeschooler can choose the curriculum and resources that best met each individual child. Who wouldn’t excel in that environment?
You do not have to do everything in the book. Say it again…
If your child has mastered a skill, move on. You don’t need to finish every page of the workbook.
You can change curriculum in the middle of the school year or anytime you notice it isn’t working for you or your child.
If the curriculum that everyone was raving about is making you want to pull out your hair, switch. If your child isn’t getting it, switch. If you aren’t getting it, switch.
Just because everyone else is doing it, doesn’t mean you have to.
Yes, I’m talking to you. That new co-op or extracurricular activity that EVERYONE is joining—- It’s okay if you don’t. There is a season for everything. Maybe this isn’t your season. You can pass. One of the blessings of homeschooling today is all of the fantastic opportunities and programs available to us. One of the problems with homeschooling today is all of the fantastic opportunities and programs available to us. Your time is limited. You will not be able to do everything. I repeat, you will not be able to do everything. Choose wisely and remember, there is a season for everything.
To teach a lifelong love of learning you have to model a lifelong love of learning. Stay educated on homeschooling issues. Stay educated about education. Stay educated about anything that matters to you or your children.
Be a joiner. Join your local, state and national homeschool support group.
They will help you stay educated through their newsletters and conferences, plus, you will have networking opportunities with like-minded families. One of your first stops should be HSLDA. Join.
My favorite answer to the “what about socialization question”:
Our children are socializing daily with people of various ages and backgrounds so they know how to behave in modern society, which is the true definition of socialization. School isn’t really meant to be a place of socializing. In an 8 hour school day, recess and lunch only make up about 45 minutes of the day where children can socialize; In our homeschool day we complete our studies in 3 hours so our children actually have more time and opportunities for socializing with others and we take advantage of that. Thanks for asking!
The best thing you can do for your homeschool is to stay educated and current. There are so many wonderful resources today for homeschoolers that we not only have a great selection, but a lot to be thankful for. I personally subscribe to each publications I list below. I encourage you to subscribe to your favorites whenever possible so that these resources will continue to be available. If you are unable to subscribe perhaps you can encourage your local library or homeschool support group to. You can also stretch your homeschool dollar by sharing a subscription with a friend.
Updated November 2008
Useful Math Websites:
Graphs & Grid Paper PDF’s