How Letting Go of Homeschool Expectations will Set You Free
Letting go of homeschool expectations is, in my opinion, one of the most important ways to have a successful ‘learn at home’ experience. But it is NOT easy.
There is so much pressure on parents and children to be the best. And if you’re taking on the responsibility of educating your kids, by choice or not, then this pressure lands squarely in your lap.
It doesn’t have to be like this!
Teaching your kids is much more meaningful when you let go of what is expected and focus on what is useful, enjoyable and most importantly…manageable.
What’s with all the Expectations?
As parents, we obviously want what’s best for our kids. But who decides what ‘best’ is? Do we or does society?
I always thought that a happy life was a financially successful one. This success would come from doing well at school, going to university, getting a good job, earning a lot of money and then buying expensive things and going on lots of holidays. My children would naturally and effortlessly follow this path.
Luckily, I have had a very different life to this. And my children have also helped me to see that ‘best’ can be decided by us.
Don’t get me wrong. I do still crave these ‘successes’. It is ingrained in me from years and years of exposure. And now social media very strongly reinforces these desires by constantly bombarding us with images of what perfect lives should be like.
But I have been blessed with children who are ‘different’ and it has allowed me to see that a different path is possible. This path can be as fulfilling and meaningful, even if less traveled.
We are concentrating on raising decent human beings, who care for themselves and those around them. They may not have fancy jobs when they grow up, but they will have been given the chance to find their niche.
Bye Bye Homeschool Expectations!
I have written countless times about why homeschooling is fantastic. I love the flexibility, the opportunity to really engage my kids and to be able to allow them to learn at their own pace.
But there can also be loads and loads of homeschool expectations, based on what we see on social media. If you look at Pinterest you see gorgeous homeschool rooms, filled with brightly coloured items to delight and inspire children. If you go on Instagram, you see fresh homeschool moms, surrounded by laughing homeschool kids and heaps and heaps of beautiful, engaging resources.
These kinds of images can pile on the expectations! This is not reality for many of us. Homeschooling is exhausting, frustrating, messy and unique. But just because my homeschool doesn’t look like yours, doesn’t make it any better or worse. We are all different.
We may not all have the energy, finances, space or experience to offer our kids this kind of homeschool. But it doesn’t mean that our kids are learning less or are being denied the ‘best’.
The fact that they are at home, having one-on-one time with their parents and are able to learn at a speed that suits them, means that they are getting more than they would typically get at a regular school. And they can achieve whatever kind of success they want to.
This also means that spending a day or even a week, watching TV or playing games will NOT mean your child is not a success. It will mean that everyone has the time to regroup and to tackle homeschooling with more energy.
This post might be useful if you’re having a really bad homeschooling day.
Once you lean into this and embrace it, the anxiety magically disappears. And this is where letting go of homeschool expectations can be liberating. By designing a learning experience that suits you and your family, that’s realistic and sustainable, you will get the very best of what homeschooling can offer.