This morning, as part of Blogathon 2011, I am honored to be swapping posts with my new friend Jan Udlock, a homeschooling mom and author on parenting and the family. I’ll be posting on her blog (you can find that here). In the meantime, enjoy this very encouraging and challenging post from a wise homeschool mom.
Hints from a Veteran Homeschooling Mom
1. Each child is different
As mothers it’s easy to say that each child is different but we have to remember that when we are teaching them. Find what works for a specific child and run with it. It may be hands on learning. Another child may need absolute quiet to work. Provide the needed environment. Don’t compare the siblings with each other.
If you have a disruptive child, I have learned that misbehavior is not necessarily the problem. Your child may have a learning disability, and she has learned to hid it with behaving inappropriately. If you have any concern, have your child tested.
2. There is a difference between boys and girls.
When I was younger, a lot, younger I thought that nurture was more important than nature. But I was wrong. Children are born with a specific bent and my boys wiggled more, had poor eye/hand coordination initially and couldn’t walk through a room without touching something or someone.
I remind mamas to relax more and enjoy their “wiggly worms.”
3. Education and academics can become an idol.
With my five children, I have a wide range of academic abilities. It’s far easier to teach a student that can grasp a term or concept within the first 20 mins. Homeschooling can be come an idol in your household like it did for me. Watch out that you don’t begin to think you are a better mom or Christian woman because you homeschool. Or if you have a very smart child, be careful with your words around other homeschooling friends. Trust me, it’s not very pretty.
4. Find support.
If you have a supportive spouse of homeschooling and/or immediate family member, please realize how blessed you are. There are moms out there that don’t have the support that they need. If you don’t, then find another mom that can help you through the hard days or hard subjects. You need to feel supported.
5. Have eyes and ears tested.
We have terrific insurance so it doesn’t cost us much. However I would still suggest to have your kid’s eyes and ears tested just to rule out any type of concern. Then follow whatever your doctor recommends for future appointments.
6. Know your limits.
You need to learn your limits. I always suggest to moms to speak with their spouses when it comes to important family decisions. Teaching kids through junior high is relatively doable but I had to enroll my kids in some outside classes for high school subjects.
I have to say that I am proud of the healthy relationship I have with my two big kids who are at George Fox University in Oregon. Now that they are almost out of the house, I’m so thankful that I homeschooled them. I’d love to hear your comments or questions.
Jan Udlock is a mom of five, homeschooling her last three, and a freelance writer. She can be contacted at her website: http://janudlock.com/