Getting Kids On Board With Your New Homeschool – MBFLP 252

New to homeschooling, and maybe your kid's not thrilled yet?

Are you starting homeschooling this fall? Was it always your plan, or did the pandemic make this an unexpected “best option”? Either way, are your kids on board with the decision?

Parents have the responsibility and the perspective to make this choice for their family, but sometimes the children aren’t thrilled. Even if it’s the best thing for them, it’s always more pleasant if everyone’s in accord about the plan. What can you do to help your kids understand and accept the lifestyle change you’re making? How is it different for young kids, middle schoolers, and teens? This episode, we’re talking about working toward harmony with your new homeschooling project!

An Avalanche of New Homeschoolers

The sudden shutdown of practically all public education in March, and the prospects of very restricted school reopening this fall, have prompted a lot of families to reconsider homeschooling as an option. How many? Several states are reporting double-digit increases in new homeschools, and when North Carolina opened its website for new homeschool filings in July, the rush crashed the site for an entire week. In June, researchers at the University of Michigan surveyed 1200 families in Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio, and found 12% already planned to keep at least one child at home this fall. Another survey of 2000 families by OnePoll found that 43% are “seriously considering the option of homeschooling” this year. Vermont had a 75% increase already!

With so many new families beginning homeschooling, a large percentage are taking children out of classroom schools. Their kids have already had some experience of school culture, developed friendships at school, and formed relationships with teachers. The change in school approach is going to be more disruptive for them than their pre-school and kindergarten-age siblings. That means you’ll need to approach the idea differently with the older kids. Even elementary school kids may complain, “I haven’t seen my friends in for-e-ver,” — though to be honest, that’s been heard in homeschooling families, too, during the lockdown!

So it’s important to acknowledge that your kids’ fears, concerns, preferences, and objections do matter, even if the decision has been made already. Take the time to listen and engage them on their levels–you’ll be glad you invested in the relationship. This episode, we’re talking about practical ways to address some of those concerns. Not incidentally, we’re also addressing some concerns you might be having as an unexpected homeschool parent, yourself–like socialization, your qualification to teach, and college prospects at the end! So join us —

Skeptical young girl thinking about her parents' idea

Articles Dealing With This Explosive Growth

[Side note: Many of the news reports on this subject have misread or misrepresented the actual findings; for once, they tend to overestimate how many people are choosing homeschooling. Some media reported the UofM findings, for instance, as “A third of parents may homeschool,” but the actual study says 12% plan to homeschool, and 21% were undecided. That’s a different picture. Still, 12% is a huge increase over the 3-to-4% homeschooling rate nationwide last year.]

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If WE Could Turn Back Time

If We Turn Back Time - Things We'd Tell Our Younger Selves about HomeschoolingTHSC in The Woodlands is always a fun conference. One of the reasons I love it so much is that I get to hang out with two of my favorite ladies on the planet, Arlene and Jamie. We even wore the same NAME on our nametags all weekend and enjoyed the confused looks we received.

We decided it would be fun to chat about the things we would tell our young selves (if we could) about this homeschooling gig. We definitely had some laughs and shared some pretty cool stuff. Here are the highlights:

  1. Lighten up.
  2. Don’t try and do everything.
  3. Only plan for the next year.
  4. Don’t compare.
  5. Trust your gut.

Homeschooling is a journey. It is a marathon. Some days will be great. Some days will be disastrous. Hang in there. We all agreed that we are thankful we did and think our kids would say the same.

If you aren’t a part of a co-op or moms group, start one. We all need likeminded people around us to encourage us on the tough days. Contact your state or local homeschooling organization if you aren’t sure where the cool homeschool kids hang out in your area.

 

You’ve got this!

 

Find a way to #sayyes today.

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Thank you to The Homegrown Preschooler for sponsoring this Podcast! Check out the blog post Kathy mentioned, Farmhouse Schoolhouse, to read more about A Year of Playing Skillfully.

Also, to thank you for listening, you can receive a 10% discount on any purchase at

The Homegrown Preschooler by using the code, THEREALKATHYLEE.

 

Easy Start Guide to Homeschooling – MBFLP 137

MBFLP - Quick Start Plan for Homeschooling
Labor Day is approaching and the decision to start homeschooling, that decision that was so exciting and sparkly back in May, suddenly looms like a late summer thundercloud. Relax! This episode, we talk about some key things we learned about starting homeschooling – whether you’re beginning with a 5-year-old who’s never seen a schoolroom, or bringing home an eight-grader from the local public school. The first year offers some great opportunities – and some great challenges – that will make the difference in your home education experience. And even if you’re already a veteran homeschooler, you might find a principle or two that you haven’t considered before!

 

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MBFLP - Easy Start to Homeschooling