Homeschooling Through Life

We have been homeschooling for 6 years and consider ourselves in “it” for the long haul. I love homeschooling, and feel that it is the BEST option for our children’s education.

However, it has not always been the easiest option. We have homeschooled through a house fire, deaths in the family, job losses, illnesses and many other things that life has thrown our way. I can’t even begin to count the number of times I have heard the words, “It would be much easier if you just put the kids in school”. Yet, we have stayed faithful to homeschooling. We have our minds made up that for now, and for the foreseeable future we are a homeschooling family

But, how does one homeschool through life? How have we hung on through the ups and downs through the years?

homeschooling through life

We made the decision that we were all in. At this time in our lives we are dedicated to homeschooling. We had made this decision BEFORE life got in the way. Deciding that homeschooling was important to our family no matter what happens has helped us stay faithful to homeschooling.

We have learned to relax. Life happens, and our children will inevitably understand that. Sometimes, LIFE is more important than a textbook. When my grandfather was dying, we didn’t worry about hitting the books. We spent time with him and my family. When my husband lost his job, we rearranged our schedules to accommodate him being home during the day. When we had a house fire, we learned to “camper school”.  Homeschooling doesn’t have to be “one way”. It can come in many forms, and sometimes just living life can be an education of its own.

We have opted for independent work. Sometimes, our kids just have to learn to work independently. This is the case when I am sick, or am dealing with other obligations. Independent work can happen through a textbook, an online class, a documentary or by reading books. School still happens, I am just not as involved. This works well when I have been sick, on bed rest, or caring for a sick child.

When you homeschool you will deal with many “life” scenarios. This does not mean that you have to throw in the towel. Our children learn so much through life happening. They learn how to handle stress, how to care for other children and a home, how to appreciate and care for the elderly, and how to show others love. These are all things that a textbook CANNOT teach!

I encourage you that when “life” gets in the way of homeschooling that you can keep going. Take a break from the books for a  short while, turn on a documentary, or let your children learn from their surroundings. Homeschooling through life can be done, and you can keep faithfully homeschooling.

Have you had to homeschool through “life”? How did you handle it?

Misty (6 Posts)

Misty Bailey is a wife to Roger and a homeschool mom to three beautiful blessings. She resides with her family in Southern Ohio. She loves helping new homeschoolers and has a free Homeschool 101 eBook for those getting started. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey.


***See the Light Christmas special for HOMESCHOOL POST readers: 25% off BIBLE STORIES 5 DVD Boxed set + FREE SHIPPING. Over 17 hours of content including 15 stories and 15 complete step-by-step art lessons. Code to use: HSP http://www.seethelightshine.com/store/bible-stories.html
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To Keep On… Or Not

Homeschooling is an endeavor that some feel called to, while others see it as a necessary option at a specific time in their lives based entirely on circumstances. Either way, homeschooling is not always easy. Those who feel the strong pull of a ‘call’  will put up with the hardships much longer than those who do not see it as something they are committed to for the long haul. And that makes sense.

While I really am glad that we homeschool, and both my kids have said to me and others that they feel very blessed to have been homeschooled, if things were different, I may not have taken the step in the first place. Now, unless something drastic happens, they are in it till the end. But I didn’t feel ‘called’ to homeschool when we started. It was something I wanted to do- just because.

tough times

It isn’t always going to be easy, whichever reason one homeschools. There will be times (days, weeks, and forgive me, but even months sometimes) where it is a constant struggle. The agenda won’t be even close to completed, nerves will be shot, relationships will be strained. It will happen. And if it has never happened to some who homeschool and read this- I am so happy for you. Truly. That is not sarcasm.

Homeschooling should be a joyous journey. I am realistic; it won’t happen all the time. But it isn’t all about the book learning, the test scores, or how well a checklist can be checked off (how many books can be finished, how many papers written, how well one is able to create a science experiment). Those all have their place (sort of), but it is not what homeschooling is about. Well, it isn’t for our family.

We started out because the atmosphere at the schools our kids went to were less than pleasant and our kids were coming home crying, angry, sullen, rebellious, and not very pleasant people. These were not the kids we sent to school; these are the kids we got back. We homeschool not because the academic standards are low, but because the relationship standards are.

When we think, individually in our own homeschooling families, why we started homeschooling, what drove us to make that choice, we will be better able to see if we will be able to keep on or not when things get tough. A family doesn’t have to have a religious calling to homeschooling, they don’t necessarily have to be dissatisfied with the public schools, nor do they have to think that it will be a now  or never, or always thing. For our family it is about family.

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That is why we homeschool. Ultimately is about the larger family of society. That is why we homeschool now.  We have been able to forge bonds that would not have been so strong; make connections that would have been overlooked. We enjoy each other’s company and take care to include each other in our days; in our learning, our joys, our sorrows, everything.

This will help us all with our relationships with others outside of our own family.

Homeschooling isn’t for everyone, although I truly believe that anyone can do it. But those who do and stick with it, reap rewards I believe others miss out on.

North Laurel (14 Posts)

Blossom- "North Laurel" to the online world- lives in Ohio with her husband and two teens, homeschooling the Charlotte Mason way with Ambleside Online. She is graciously allowed to be a moderator for the Ambleside Online Forum. North Laurel loves to read, be on the computer, and learn. You can read her blogging about homeschooling, book reviews and life in general at North Laurel Home & School.


***See the Light Christmas special for HOMESCHOOL POST readers: 25% off BIBLE STORIES 5 DVD Boxed set + FREE SHIPPING. Over 17 hours of content including 15 stories and 15 complete step-by-step art lessons. Code to use: HSP http://www.seethelightshine.com/store/bible-stories.html
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Faithfully Homeschooling an Only Child

Faithfully Homeschooling an Only Child

As I write this we are sitting on the couch. Little Man is sitting with a laptop doing his math. About 20 minutes ago he was doing his German lesson for the day. At my feet is a basket of freshly folded laundry and a stack of toddler toys left over from when I babysat a couple of weeks ago. This is what faithfully homeschooling an only child looks like. I imagine it’s what faithfully homeschooling in a home with multiple children looks like as well.

While doing his German language assignment today he was to practice having a conversation with another student. So he turned to me since there are no other students in our homeschool.

He said,

“Guten Tag, Wie heissen sie?”

I responded,

“Guten Tag, Ich heisse Renée, und wie …”

That’s when I forgot the lesson and messed up. He giggled and we tried again. I kept messing up. He finally in a fit of laughter said,

“Why do you keep making errors?’

Ha. Well because I don’t speak German, even though I try.

Faithfully homeschooling an only child means that I, as his teacher, am learning right along with him. As his only other class mate I’m right there with him in case he needs a partner. I’m his daily companion. There is no older sibling teaching the younger sibling it’s me and him. Occasionally, depending on the topic, dad steps in to offer help, but the day in and day out of faithfully homeschooling means me, the mom/teacher and he the son/student working through lessons, ideas and learning.

This morning he was learning at the dining room table as he worked through his history unit study. He completed reading his lesson, reading his literature companion book, vocabulary, mapping and timelining. Next up he’ll be doing a music appreciation assignment  which also has a companion reader and I suspect he’ll head to his bed to read his chapter.

Sometimes faithfully homeschooling means doing math on the cell phone app while driving to grandma’s, or finishing up a literature reading in the car while waiting for piano class to begin. Other times it’s standing beside mom serving lunch following a funeral.

You see, there isn’t some magic formula for teaching homeschool. Every home has a different method, approach and set up. But the results are the same. Learning. That’s the goal of education, for a child to learn. So in our homeschool of one child, he learns wherever we happen to land.

Faithfully homeschooling an only child only looks different because there is one child as opposed to 2, 3, 4 or more. Tweet this

Homeschooling an only child is very possible, you simply have to think of school differently. You don’t need a group of children for one child to learn. You need learning tools, you need resources, you need a teacher. The child will learn.

Oh sure, a mom of an only child who is faithfully homeschooling is also going to reach out to others and provide social opportunities for her child. She’ll sign him up for gyms, co-ops, clubs, play dates and classes so that she ensures her child isn’t living/learning in a cave. She’ll seek out groups of individuals who have similar interests and at the drop of a hat alter her educational plans to allow social time with others. She understands that it’s easier to be flexible with one child than it is with multiple children so when an opportunity arises she will jump at the chance of allowing her only child to learn in a larger group.

Are you a mom who is faithfully homeschooling an only child? Know that you are not alone. We may be the minority among the homeschooling crowd but there are plenty of homeschooling only children around.

Resources for Faithfully Homeschooling an Only Child

Resources for Faithfully Homeschooling an Only Child

Follow Great Peace Academy’s board My Only Child on Pinterest.

Only Child Pinterest Board

Only Children Pinterest Board

  •  Bloggers to Subscribe to Who are Faithfully Homeschooling an Only Child (Just a few, I’m sure there are more.)

Renée at Great Peace Academy (That’s me, I have a middle school boy)

Amy at Milk and Cookies Blog (Homeschooling a Middle School Boy)

Jimmie at Jimmie’s Collage (Homeschooling a Teen Girl)

Sallie at Sallie Borrink Learning (Homeshcooling an Elementary Girl )

Joan at Unschool Rules (Homeschooling a Teen Girl )

Angela at Joy Focused Learning (Homeschooling an Elementary Girl )

Natalie at Planet Smarty Pants (Homeschooling an Elementary Girl )

Tree Valley Academy (Homeschooling a Preschool Girl)

Rebekah at There will be a $5 Charge for Whining (Homeschooling an Elementary Boy)

Marcy at Ben and Me (Homeschooling a Middle School Boy)

Whatever age your only child is, know that you can faithfully homeschool all the way through graduation. There are great rewards and you will develop a close bond with your child unlike any other.

Renée (20 Posts)

Renée Brown is author at her personal blog, Great Peace Academy. She is a homeschooling mom to her one amazing son, Jonathan and has been the wife of her Beloved Michael for 21 years. On her blog you will find discussions about her work as a homeschooling mom, her family and her faith.


***See the Light Christmas special for HOMESCHOOL POST readers: 25% off BIBLE STORIES 5 DVD Boxed set + FREE SHIPPING. Over 17 hours of content including 15 stories and 15 complete step-by-step art lessons. Code to use: HSP http://www.seethelightshine.com/store/bible-stories.html
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