Picture of a chalk board with the words What you need to know your first year homeschooling

What you need to know your first year homeschooling

So, you have decided to homeschool now what? What you need to know your first year homeschooling. Your mind is overflowing with what if’s. Mine was filled with all the what if questions. I started homeschooling long before it was considered an option and long before the internet. 

I had so many questions Is there a homeschool method that I should be using? Should I set my school up to look like public school? Who can I ask? 

I don’t know any other homeschooling parents.  Well, YOU have come to the right place. In this blog post I will answer some of your questions and give an idea because there isn’t a best way for your first year it’s what way works best for your entire family.

 Because I want you to be the NEW BEST HOMESCHOOL MOM THAT YOU CAN BE!!!! 

Picture of a chalk board with the words What you need to know your first year homeschooling

There are a so many factors that go into the first year of homeschooling. With so many options out there, it is so hard to choose which one will work for you. New homeschool moms are often confused by all the different ways to teach your children. Especially if you have several children at different ages. So, I have listed the top 6 pondering questions to think about.

 First year homeschooling Worries

Here are my top 6 questions to ask yourself

1. Ask yourself why you want to home school. Do feel that the Holy Spirit is nudging you to homeschool? Be diligent in prayer about your decision!!  Remember our children are God’s we are just borrowing them. Be very honest and really consider this question carefully. Do you want to home school because you don’t like governmental regulations? Do you feel that God is leading you to homeschooling your child (ren)? These are all legitimate reasons, and you may have some others of your own. 

2. Can you take the criticism and misunderstanding that will come your way if you home school? If you choose to educate your children at home, you are likely to hear all kinds of lectures about “socialization” and so forth. Some people will suggest public school any time your child is less than perfect in his or her academic performance. Are you prepared to defend your choice to home school, and/or let such criticism roll off?

3. Consider how much time you have. Home schooling is not necessarily an all day, every day kind of thing, but it does take some time. You will have to factor in the time it takes to plan lessons as well as actual teaching time. You will need to have a daily schedule of how you’d like your day to go.

4. Think about how much money you have. Homeschooling does not have to be expensive, but it nearly always involves some kind of expenditure. School supplies and the curriculum itself will cost money anywhere from $100 to $1000 per year. You don’t have to spend a lot – the internet and your local library can do a great job of providing literature, worksheets, hands-on science experiments, and so forth.

Just determine your budget and plan your curriculum accordingly.

5. Are there other groups and events in your community in which your home schooled child will participate? In some areas, public schools may offer or even be the only group activity available. If your community has activities like Little League, a home school co-op, and so forth, then you may feel more confident in home schooling knowing that your child will have opportunities to make friends. A co-op is a great because a lot of the times the entire family can participate. 

6. Is your child unusually advanced or behind academically? These are understandable reasons to want to home school. In the case of the advanced student, you may not want your child to be held back in a traditional school setting because he is so far ahead of everyone. Or if your student is behind (by public school standards) and you want to give him individualized attention, then home schooling may be right for you.

18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Ephesians%206%3A18-19&version=NKJV;KJV#:~:text=Ephesians%206%3A18-19%20New%20King%20James%20Version%2018%20praying,to%20make%20known%20the%20mystery%20of%20the%20gospel%2C

Homeschooling Style is there such a thing

I had absolutely no idea about homeschooling style. When I started homeschooling fifteen years ago the internet was not a thing and homeschooling wasn’t the norm! I didn’t know anyone else who was homeschooling.  We just felt the Lord calling us to homeschool and we thought that this was a great way for us to instill Godly character into our children. And give them a Christian World view.

I thought you just schooled at home in a traditional school way.  You lessoned planned, set the timer for an hour and moved on if a subject wasn’t completed than that become homework and I needed to school from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.. 

This was a train wreck waiting to happen and it finally did derail!! The kids didn’t like this style and truth be told I didn’t either. 

  • Traditional (public school setting)
  • Charlotte Mason 
  • Montessori
  • Eclectic
  • Unschooling

I am not going to explain the various types of homeschool approaches in this post but you can read about the various styles here https://everydaychaosandcalm.com/homeschool-styles/

 I look at each year of our homeschool journey as many lessons taught and many lessons learned.

Kimberly the purposefulhomelife.com

Learning Style

I had never heard of different learning styles when I started homeschooling fifteen years ago. Knowing this would have saved my sanity and a huge chunk of money. 

To find your child’s learning style takes time.  You may not know it right from the start but as you go it should become more obvious. Don’t be afraid to design your own curriculum. Sometimes, we as homeschooling  parents can get stressed and worried over whether or not they have the “perfect” curriculum for their kids. But sometimes that stress and worry can translate into a rigid curriculum that is not a good fit for your children.

 It is important to know what style of learning our child(ren) are. 

  1. Visual learning
  2. Auditory learning
  3. Kinesthetic learning

I will go over the four different learning styles briefly. Keep in mind that a child’s learning style will vary with age, stage of development. There are a lot of factors that go into what learning style your child is. 

  • Visual learning means that your child learns and absorbs information by seeing it. This could be charts, picture books, photos.
  • Auditory Learning means that your child learns better when they can listen to a lesson either through music, or even reading outload to themselves.
  • Kinesthetic learning is learning with lots of hands-activities. Studying while moving in some way. I had a child that would read to me while doing head stands on the couch! 

I feel that most kids start out in the kinesthetic learning stage until they are more developed. Just by observing you will be able to notice the different learning styles.

 Don’t get hung up on trying to put your child into one of the learning styles. We all are probably in more than one. 

When I finally figured out that all eleven of my kids learn in a different way our homeschool was a much happier place for learning.

You will need to try different things during your first-year homeschooling to figure out what is going to work and not going to work. 

 I look at each year of our homeschool journey as many lessons taught and many lessons learned.

Choosing homeschool Curriculum

Now that we sort of figured out how a child learns the best, it’s time for the choosing of curriculum.

Curriculum Choices almost makes my head spin dizzy!!! 

Here are a few questions to ponder:

  • Do I want an all in curriculum-everything is included- each child has there own grade level – lots of parent involvement
  • Do I want to have all my children learning the same thing such everyone doing the same history, science, art, hands-on-activities?
  • What kind of learning experience do I want my kids have? 
  • How much time and effort do I want to put into creating my own curriculum, and teaching?

I home school six children and I have found that by having them together for the core subjects is a SANITY SAVER!!

 My top pick and this is a really great option if you are teaching multiple ages My Fathers World click here https://www.mfwbooks.com/ to find out more. 

We have been using this for the past 7 years and really love it.

When ever you can combine more than one subject this is really ideal for the new homeschooling parent. It lessons your planning and teaching time!! WIN WIN!!!

There are so many math curriculums available!! This is one I’ve gone back and forth on. It depends if you want to teach math or have somebody else teach it!

Here is a list of a few:

  • Saxon Math homeschool https://mymathassistant.com/  the program comes with a free trial, a family membership, lesson explanation, grading
  • Teaching textbook-video based
  • Lots of workbook kinds. You really just need to decide what would be best for your current situation.
  • Many home schoolers find something to like in the various approaches.

Other home schoolers just prefer to design their own curriculum for their own reasons. And still others “mix and match” among the various types of curricula and philosophies. If you are not sure whether you should design your own approach or how to go about customizing your homeschool here are some blogs that you can check out

https://www.happyteachermama.com/ Jennifer’s website is full insight and great ideas on how to educate at home and other ideas! Make sure you go check her out!

http://createyourhomeschool.com Shela offers practical help for homeschoolers at all stages of the journey.

Here are some simple ideas.

* Determine how your child learns. This is probably the most important step in deciding what approach to take to customizing your home school. There are actually tests available online that allow you to discover your child’s learning style. Teaching according to your student’s style of learning can make the difference between success and struggle.

* Familiarize yourself with the various home school philosophies. Do some research into the types of home-schooling approaches out there – you may be surprised to find out there are so many! 

Look at the mainstream ones first, and then look into some of the “offshoots” of the main approaches.

* Talk to other home-schooling families. This is so important when customizing your home school and discovering what approach is right for you. Not only will you meet and develop relationships with other home-schooling families, but you will also glean ideas for all sorts of lessons and approaches. 

* Multiple children require a different approach than just one child. This is something to remember as you do your research – would this work with three, four, six, or eight different ages?

If a certain home school approach involves a lot of field trips, for example, and you have a lot of children that approach could be impractical. 

* Don’t be afraid to design your own curriculum. Sometimes, home schooling parents can get stressed and worried over whether or not they have the “perfect” curriculum for their kids.

But sometimes that stress and worry can translate into a rigid curriculum that is not a good fit for your children. 

  • Don’t be afraid to experiment. 
  • Does your child(ren) love machines? 
  • Design a unit study that covers the core subjects through the subject of machines.
  •  Explore the topic of machines through the core subjects. 

You could do the same thing with a student who loves art, science, music, dance, math, or reading. 

A nature study is a great one to do either in the spring or fall. You can contrast what happens in the each of the seasons that doesn’t happen in the other.

* Take advantage of free resources. Look at various lessons and how they are laid out to get ideas for your student. You can look at these as springboards for your own customized approach.

* Probably the most important aspect of customizing your home school is to observe and know your kids.

  •  What works for them?
  • What makes them tick?
  •  How can you work with, not against, your child’s interests and style of learning?
  •  When you embrace this approach, it sets your child up for a lifetime of learning. 

The main idea here is to set your homeschool up so it fits your own pace! Add in lots of hands-on activities and let the learning be child led.

Your children are must more eager to learn if they are interested.

REMEBER: Your family’s needs come first make sure that the way you want to educate your children is going to serve them. NOT push them away!!! The best homeschool curriculum may be just outside in your yard or park!!

In conclusion what you need to know your first year of homeschooling is know your why. That each one of your children will learn differently in different ways. Homeschooling needs to be budgeted.

Please leave a comment or question I’d love to know what you think and answer any questions you might have

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