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I love homeschooling my children. It’s a beautiful lifestyle and I absolutely love being able to adapt to each of my children’s individual learning needs. It’s wonderful, but it’s also really hard. Here are my 5 best tips to have a productive, amazing and fun homeschool year. Happy homeschooling!
My planner is one of my favorite tools for planning. I usually print out a yearly calendar for what our home school year will look like and then I just fill in a week at a time in my planner. I usually add appointments to my phone as well because I need the reminder, but there is just something so satisfying about checking off something in my planner with a good old fashioned pen.
Learn about Looping
Most homeschoolers are aware of the Morning basket. I’m new to this concept, but I love it so far. I put all of our morning essentials in a tin or basket and set it in our living room. We read our chapter book, devotional, history book and our bible each day and I just love the simplicity of this system, before we move on to our other work. I’ve also implemented a looping aspect to it, where we do a few of the many morning activities on our list, and each day alternate between various subjects. To learn more about looping check out Pam Barnhill’s blog, she explains it perfectly.
Stay Organized, But Not Obsessed
My biggest home school essential is my cube organizer bookcase. I love it and I’m able to organize all the books, bins and manipulatives by each child. It’s been an essential item in our house, but I don’t obsess over keeping it perfectly organized. I have multiple canvas bins on about half of the shelves so when it gets messy, it’s contained to bins and it doesn’t drive me bananas.
Customize Your Curriculum
Curriculum choices are going to be all over the map for most families and we are no different. There is no perfect curriculum, but there are a ton of amazing options out there. Choose one that works well for your child and then add in the things it lacks. My youngest is just starting a preschool workbook from Amazon that we like, along with puzzles and fun coloring books. My middle child is using Master Books, and my oldest has decided to try a computer based curriculum this year called Switched on Schoolhouse. We are excited to see how it goes. My boys are pretty visual learners, so I also like to add in manipulatives, like math cubes for counting, flashcards and a clock to learn time. I also adore this math DVD we bought for my oldest to memorize his upper math facts.
Comment below and let me know your favorites choices for curriculum, or your thoughts if you’ve used any of the above curriculums.
Enjoy Each Day
The most important thing to remember about homeschooling, and motherhood in general is to learn to enjoy each day. As a special needs mom this is something that is very dear to my heart. I’ve recently been blessed with a different perspective on life, since my sons’ diagnosis. It’s been difficult, but it’s also given me at “cherish each day” mindset. This doesn’t mean you need to be a perfect parent, just focus more on being present and less on getting everything done.
What are your favorite home school tips and tricks? Share your knowledge with this newbie home school mama in the comments below.