You want to quit.
You never expected homeschool to “look” like this.
Perhaps you and your child have conflicting personalities? Or maybe you’re frustrated because you can’t seem to teach a particular concept? Maybe you’ve had too many days that end in tears?
Guaranteed, you are not alone.
Every homeschooling family at one time or another will contemplate quitting. Homeschooling can be simultaneously invigorating and exhausting… inspiring and discouraging… freeing and suffocating. It’s not easy.
Before you decide to quit, there are a few things you should do first.Feel like quitting #homeschooling? Maybe you should read this first. #hs Click To Tweet
Sounds easy doesn’t it?! But how often, in the midst of a challenging lesson, or when dealing with a frustrated child, do we stop and take a few minutes to breathe? Take some deep breaths and move on.
Remember your mission.
When we’re ready to quit, it’s important to reflect and remember why we decided to embark on this educational journey in the first place. Spend some time writing about your decision to homeschool. Reflect on this mission. Is it still your purpose?
Assess your schedule.
Sometimes we feel short-tempered and worn out because we’ve been stretched thin. Take some time to assess your schedule. Perhaps your children are in too many extra-curricular activities? Maybe you’re trying to cram too much curriculum into your days?
It also helps to look at your schedule and see if you can build in some flex-time and breaks. This year, we switched to a very intensive, fully-aligned program for two of our core subjects. The extra effort and work that goes into these subjects led me to a change from a five-day week to a four-day week. It’s made a tremendous difference to my family. We use the mid-week day off to rest, reconnect, and prep ourselves for the remainder of the week.
Assess your curriculum.
Sometimes our struggles come from a curriculum that our children don’t like or have outgrown. For instance, if your child is an auditory learner, then look for audio books or read-aloud materials, rather than fill-in-the-blank textbooks.
It’s also important to evaluate if you’re compatible with the curriculum. If you’re required to do a few hours of prep for a particular lesson, and you don’t have that kind of time, then maybe look for a less time-consuming resource to use. Never try to teach with a curriculum that you dislike.
Connect with your children.
As I’ve shared before, the key to homeschooling is relationship. Take a break and focus on connecting with your children. The obstacle to their learning may be that you’ve become more of a teacher than a parent. If you need ideas and inspiration, check out these suggestions for how to connect with your child.
Reach out to others.
Friendship is born at the moment when one person says to another, “What, you too? I thought I was the only one.”
I just love this quote. I’ve had so many occasions when I felt like I was “the only one.” What a difference it makes when you discover that you’re not alone!
When you’re burdened and you feel like quitting, call on a supportive homeschooler and share your frustrations. I’m certain they will be able to tell you that they’ve encountered obstacles as well and may be able to offer you the encouragement that you need to go on.
Be thankful & seek joy.
The quickest remedy for an unhappy heart is thankfulness. I’ve shared before how I keep a homeschooling “joy journal”. By reading some entries from my joy journal, I’m often able to switch gears from miserable, to thankful. Try it out! It may surprise you!
Last, but certainly not least, pray. God is waiting for you to call on Him. Spend some time in prayer and ask the Lord to give you clarity and strength to continue your homeschool journey.
Have you ever contemplated quitting homeschooling? What changed your attitude? What kept you from quitting? Please tell us your thoughts and then take a moment to share this post in your homeschool communities.
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Jennifer Bly is the creator of My Kitchen, My Classroom: An Introduction to Homeschool. Connect with her on Facebook and Instagram for homeschooling updates and inspiration.