So the homeschool year is not even half over, yet you’ve hit a wall. Your homeschool spirit has dropped its pompons and left the field.. Don’t worry, this feeling is common to new homeschoolers and veteran homeschoolers alike. Everyone is so pumped up at the beginning of the school year and then a creeping fatigue begins to set in.
Don’t panic. There are ways you can regain your enthusiasm and rekindle your homeschooling momentum. And best of all, you can use these tips year-after-year. They can put the pep back into your handspring and the roar back into your megaphone. Don’t get down on yourself or think you are failing somehow. Just take a deep breath and keep reading.
Eat, Sleep, and Drink — be Merry, Too!
Every human mind and body relies on nutritious meals, adequate sleep, and hydration if they’re expected to perform at their optimal levels. You may have, during the rush of the new homeschool year, ignored some or all of these factors. Make sure you’re eating fruits and vegetables — and don’t forget about your protein intake. The occasional treat, baking cookies, pies or other goodies, is fine; but it won’t replace the good stuff your body needs.
Are you having problems sleeping? Are you staying up at night worrying about your teaching methods, the curriculum you’re using, or wondering about how your children are progressing? Relax your mind. You can adjust your schedule, change your curriculum, or sit down with your children and talk with them about homeschooling. But first, get a good night’s sleep.
Doctors and fitness experts harp on proper hydration. If you don’t think you’re getting enough water, keep a water bottle with you during the day. This doesn’t mean you have to buy bottled water. Most tap water is fine, especially if you invest in a filter.
And one last thing — have fun. Yes, homeschool really can be fun! Inject some laughter and silliness into every homeschool day It’s such a great remedy, especially when you’re enthusiasm starts lagging behind.
Go on an Adventure!
Remember the hobbit, Bilbo Baggins? He stuck to a rigid schedule, preferred being a homebody (actually, he lived in a hole), and rarely let an exciting thought enter his brain. Then, one day, he found himself on an adventure. The boring hobbit became an exhilarated hobbit!
So, go on an adventure. Get out of the house and visit a museum, or a park where you can draw pictures of ducks, trees, clouds or anything else the natural world offers. Call another homeschooling friend and plan a play date or social event. Let your imagination get crazy. You probably won’t meet giants spiders, wood elves, or a fire breathing dragon like Bilbo — but you can always pretend. (If you aren’t familiar with Bilbo, look him up. He really is a merry little fellow, and makes a great subject for a unit study!)
Change your Curriculum
One of the key factors in a demotivated homeschool is often curriculum choice. Have your kids started complaining about the program you are using? This happens. You can’t really know if a curriculum is a good fit until your children start thoroughly using it. Plus, children change from year to year. So what worked last year might not hold their attention this year.
If you or your children aren’t content, start investigating new curriculum options. Explore your curriculum options via websites, homeschool conventions, and word-of-mouth. Talk with other homeschool parents, and you might find that one unique way to break the homeschool monotony is with a web-based curriculum.
Online programs can deliver really exciting tools for your children and for you, too. In fact, they may feel more like video games than curricula. They include characters and lessons that your children interact with — it’s like having a buddy learning along with them. And they can learn at their own pace and use the programs wherever the internet is available.
You benefit because web-based options offer scheduling, record keeping, and automatically save detailed progress reports on your children, which your state may require. This obviously cuts down on the administrative duties that come along with homeschooling your children.
Homeschooling is a journey where you not only discover things about learning and education, you also learn things about yourself and your children. You’ll find out what you’re capable of, what your limits are, and how to recognize when you need a change. But with some rest, some adventure, and a new approach, you’ll be back on top of that homeschool pyramid in no time!