8 Tips from a Homeschooling Entrepreneur
With public & private school closures being announced around the country due to coronavirus, I know a lot of parents are panicking right now. If you are asking yourself how in the world you are going to manage the next few weeks home with your kids, I have some tips based on 8 years of homeschooling and running a business at the same time. We are more than capable of getting through the COVID-19 outbreak and I’d like to think that we are going to come out of this as stronger families.
I built my online business while my son was doing 3.5 years of chemotherapy for leukemia. We have been homeschooling for 8 years now. So whatever voice in your head is telling you that this is an impossible situation… tell it to shut up because you are more than capable of handling this. I have no special skills or training. I’m a massive introvert who would rather be by herself most of the time. I was the mom who said “I could never homeschool my kids.”
YOU GOT THIS!
- Don’t Try to Replicate Public School at Home
No complicated schedules or class periods are necessary. You can get it done in half the time if you just work from a checklist. Set daily goals together. Have a flexible plan and don’t expect yourself to maintain a rigid schedule.
- Don’t Try to Conform to a Subject List
Take the thing your kid is most interested in and build a topic study. Go deep into their passion. You can touch language arts, history, math and science just by studying a single interest like cars or horses. They will love it and do more if they are interested in the topic.
- Encourage Kids to Direct Their Own Play
Magic happens when kids get bored and you don’t give them an out. A lot of public schooled kids are so scheduled they’ve lost their creativity. It’s still there. Let them find it. You don’t have to be their playmate either. Playing alone lets kids imaginations thrive.
- Kids Are Better at Manual Labor Than We Expect
Show them how to do practical tasks. Teach them how to properly mop a floor, wash a car, weed a garden bed, change sheets, do laundry. Get them outside as much as possible. Hold them to high expectations and standards for the work. They will surprise you.
- Ditch Academics to Focus on the Arts & PE
Remember those underfunded and under appreciated subjects like PE, art, music and drama? What if you only focused on those? It’s a brilliant time to nurture these experiences for your kids. Research shows that kids who practice art, perform better in math and reading.
- Leverage Online Classes & Pre-Made Curriculum
You don’t have to be the teacher if you don’t want to. If you need paid resources, the two I’ve had good experiences with are Outschool and Teachers Pay Teachers. There are lots of great curricula for your kids on both those platforms. If you have a skill you can teach, then why not monetize it and get it launched ASAP?!
- Set the Right Intentions for This Season
Consider that maybe, just maybe, this will be an amazing bonding experience for your family. Don’t overcomplicate it. Deep down all kids crave time and attention from their parents. Whatever that looks like for you, let yourself lean in to that a little bit. You are more than capable.
- Neighbor Helping Neighbor is How We Survive This
Do you have bored teenagers at home? There are a ton of working parents who need childcare right now. Make it affordable. Especially for parents who are working long hours in the medical field. Another idea is to swap kids for the day with your neighbors so that everyone gets a change of pace.