I have been so encouraged by the book Organized Ramblings by Catherine Jaime. She speaks right to the day-to-day grind that we homeschool moms face with a wisdom and humor that truly lightens the load. Today she shares with us all some perspective on how to finish well this school year.
Encouragement Mid School Year
from Author and 30-year Homeschool Veteran,
Catherine McGrew Jaime
Do you feel like your homeschooling journey is getting rocky? Are you suffering from mid-year blues? Do the bad days seem to outnumber the good ones?
You are in good company…I meet homeschool moms regularly who are barely holding on, who are second guessing their decision to teach their own children. But so many of the times, I find that they are suffering from one of two maladies: They are playing “the lone ranger of homeschooling” or they are stuck in the mode of “school at home”. Both of those problems will suck the joy out of your education journey faster than you might imagine.
But let’s start with the former, the lone ranger syndrome. Too many homeschoolers I’ve met are caught up in their own independence. By our very nature, we are an independent bunch. Most of us homeschool, at least in part, because we want to do things our way. But, that independent streak can sometimes cause problems.
We are reluctant to ask for help. We are resistant to the idea that our “home school” might need to involve any others.
But that attitude steals the support system we need right out from under us. We are not designed to deal with our problems alone – we are meant to lift up each other and our burdens. I believe that translates into things like Moms’ Meetings and Park Day and the like. Families that don’t participate in those or other such activities often feel like they are alone in the world of homeschooling.
The other issue that I see so often is families trying to replicate school at home. When we make the decision to take on the education of our children – is our objective schooling our children or educating them? To many people there is no difference between school and education. But I contend there is a big difference. And that difference can often mean the difference between a successful home education experience and a dreadful one.
When we are focused on school, we start to stress over tests and schedules and grade levels and…But what happens to real education in the process of all of that? Does education really occur when the focus is on school?
These are questions we should all consider, especially in the middle of the year if we are struggling to get through the remainder of our academic year.
If your family is struggling with school at home, I strongly suggest you consider changing your focus to education, maybe adding more hands on, games, unit studies, etc.
And don’t try to do it all yourself. Give your family and yourself a gift of less stress in the coming year.
And may this next semester be the best semester your family has had yet.
Catherine Jaime is the mother of 12, 9 of those being homeschool graduates. She is founder of Creative Learning Connection and has written numerous books and materials to support the homeschool community (some of which have been featured here on Whatever State!). Be sure to enter her current Organized Ramblings special offer and giveaway.