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Homeschooling doesn't always start smoothly. I have some homeschooling regrets that I want to improve if I could turn back my homeschooling time.
Homeschooling has changed my life completely. I was very busy with my multi level marketing business while my children attended the private school. I enjoyed going to the gym regularly in the morning when they went to school. But now, I have to stay and work completely at home. I cannot dig my network as fast as it was. I cannot go to the gym as it was before. I am still lucky that I can work out at home. There are more things to sacrifice after I homeschool children. It seemed nothing better than sending kids to school.
However, as the time is going on, I start to get used to this condition and there are a lot of lessons to reflect. I wish none has done some mistakes I made. Here are my 10 biggest mistakes I have ever made and might be still inside there. To see how it looked like, you might read my disturbance in homeschooling. I should have been able to deal with those at the moment.
Having been able to distinguish homeschooling from schooling at home
The first time I “start my day in homeschooling” was so horrible. I still remembered that we sat nicely in a table in the middle of the living room while my mom was spying us around. It was really not comfortable. I should never thought about what others would think about us. We were very stressful I can say.
Although I was a teacher, I should not think that homeschooling is similar with school at home. I should not ever compare them at all like my mom does. At school we sat nicely in the chair with a text book on the desk, listening to the teacher. Everyone has the same lesson at once. In our homeschooling I have a couple of different levelled students that need similar attention. What a mistake when I put them together at the same standard. I should have seen their specific needs personally and have a more comfortable way.
Joining both virtual and real homeschooling communities
I have never joined any homeschooling communities in any social media before. I was very poor in any social media use. This is a terrible mistakes of me that I am very sure nobody reading this would like to make the same one. I could use the internet when I started homeschooling but I could not use any social media and even I thought that social media are fools. I have been very sorry about that now. It is social media that can connect me other homeschooling parents around the world. They are my buddies to whom I have been learning a lot. We have shared morn and encouragement together. Getting together with both virtual and real homeschooling buddies gives me positive atmosphere of homeschooling that makes me feel not being alone and lonely.
Having the vision and mission of homeschooling
When people ask me why do you homeschool and what kind of abnormalities my children have so that I homeschool them, I used to be very annoyed a lot. I should not be so annoyed if I had a prepared and simple answer for the questions, should I? Even, I often think by myself why I homeschool them if everything is getting worst. I am just aware that I have forgot all the motivation, vision, and mission of our homeschooling that I had at the first time we started it. Therefore, having a written vision and mission of homeschooling is very important to confirm ourselves whenever we make a deadlock. Having non written answers and statement will make us forget easily every intention or motives of our homeschooling so that we will easily give up.
Purchasing too much in curriculum
I think it often happens to most new homeschooling mom even for myself right now when we are either too excited or to worried about our homeschooling. It was very hard for me to stop my “homeschooling shopaholic” when I started it, but now I have learnt a lot about it. I think it is not about purchasing with money, but it is about collecting the free resources until we forget if we have got them. Collecting won't spend your money, but it spends your time. The best way for this challenge is to have priorities based on the reality of your children ability to grab the curriculum, your vision and mission of your homeschooling. It is great to do some evaluation to check the recent achievement and to think further what to add. Keeping the requirement list will be also helpful.
Focusing in the religion and character education is crucial
As a homeschooling mom, getting worried to much about the children's achievement is not really strange. I often try to catch up the planning until I forget the religious and character education. When I think further, i have lost the greatest time of homeschooling. The missed out lessons are changeable, but the right time to build up the children's religious side, well developed morality, and character won't be able to return. There are many genious, clever, and smart people. However, to get the trusted and reliable people is very difficult. That is a great plus of people's qualification.
Getting wider perspective of planning choice
In the beginning of my homeschooling, I spent a lot of time in doing written planning for kids so that I have less time to get close relationship with my husband and children. After I change into online planner, I found more time to spend. I still can blog regularly and seriously beside doing some business at home. I should have opened my mind for huge rangest of planning choice before I started one.
Focusing on the best ways of learning for my children rather than exam
Honestly, until right now, I am still worried if my children can pass the exam. Therefore, we spend more time to prepare for the exam. Here I learn a lot that I should not spend a lot of time in testing or more exam preparation memorization. Exam preparation can be done in certain serious time before. It is useless to prepare for it a long time ago. It is better to get to know kids by doing observation of the best way for them to learn so that they will have more time to learn more enjoyable things.
Getting too worried about socialization
I was too worried about socialization before I read The Well-Adjusted Child: The Social Benefits of Homeschooling. You might read the review here. I was too busy looking for any chance for kids to get socialized. I think it was just a waste of time. We can use the time for doing something else more useful. Even kids didn't enjoy it either. What I can see from them right now is that they just enjoy their life. The most important for them is character education so that they can adapt themselves in the real social life in the society. The socialization process is a natural process that I should not have worried too much about.
Comparing my children to others
Because of my worry of being left out or lost from other parents' children, I often compared my children with others. Although it is not in front of them directly, I believe that they feel it. What a shame of myself. A child is a gift from God that is completely unique. I should not put my own children face down. It also happens sometimes with other people who always try to test my children to compare with others. It is not because I am worried that my children will lose from others or the competition, but I would like to try to say that it is a shame to compare my own children from others in certain aspects like their intelligence and appearance. It will just make them broken hearted.
Giving them time to move
Well, you should know that I have three sons which is completely different from my mom who has three daughters. Boys and girls are completely different. It also makes me different from my mom in terms of giving them discipline. What I did previously was very stressful as I tried to apply how my mom get her daughter discipline. Running, shouting, wrestling (joke one), etc were forbidden. I got so stressful by myself. Even for sleeping kids try moving.
This mistake is not only for homeschoolers but also for most parents. However, as I started homeschooling, the move of boys was very distracting a lot as I meet them every single minute. What I am doing right now is that to give them time to move, but without any destructive action. Get them tired and play then they will start to “get tame” when their energy is almost finished. I love this book a lot: Boys Should Be Boys: 7 Secrets to Raising Healthy Sons
Adelien Tan is a mother of three awesome boys and a wife of a great husband. They are a home education family who live in Surabaya, Indonesia, where home education is still very rare. English is her foreign language, but She tries to use it in blogging.