If you are a homeschool mom, chances are this time of year you are getting the itch to finish things for this school year. It’s sunny outside which means the kiddos are not as focused as they were a month ago and let’s be honest, we homeschooling mamas are ready for a break too. Summer is so close we can smell it and after a long winter who doesn’t want to get some sunshine therapy! However, you probably have a bit more schooling that needs to be completed before you can officially wrap things up which can be grueling to do at times.
Never fear fellow homeschoolers, I have learned a few tips over my last 5 years of homeschooling on how to finish your homeschool year strong and to keep you from pooping out.
1. Do more hands on learning
Those experiments you skipped during winter when your days were packed, now is a great time to do them! Not only will it be fun for the kiddos and a great change of pace for them and you but you’ll also be reviewing previous material at the same time. What homeschooler doesn’t love that!
2. Get outside
Now that the weather is warmer take the lessons outside. Pack up the books and move the learning outdoors. Hearing the birds singing, getting some Vitamin D and lots a fresh air can be very energizing. Spread a blanket out on your lawn or at a local park. Pack some water and snacks and enjoy learning in a natural setting. (Just don’t forget the sunblock!)
3. Get moving
Play learning games that involve moving. For example, if your kids are learning addition write the numbers in chalk on a sidewalk and give them a problem and then have them jump to the correct answer. We are currently doing this with multiplication and division facts. Don’t forget to move with them. It’s a great way to get some physical activity for yourself too!
4. Take some me time for yourself
This time of year I start to feel burnt out and my child picks up on that quickly. She then starts to feel burnt out as well so over the years I have learned that the best thing that I can do as a mom and a homeschooler is to take a little time and do something I enjoy. You have to fill yourself up before you can pour into others. I take an hour and read on the deck or watch an inspirational sermon. I grab my camera and go for a ride looking for great scenery. Whatever fills your love tank, do that! It will help you to feel better so that you can finish those last few weeks strong.
5. Field Trips
Now is the perfect time to take a few field trips. Visit the zoo, the aquarium, local museums… whatever you like. It will give the kids and you a much needed break from your routine but still allow for lots of fun learning that your children will remember forever.
6. Offer the Kids Extra Motivation
This is the time of year that I like to offer a little extra motivation. Extra screen time, video game time, the promise of a lunch date at a restaurant, extra art time… whatever your child loves. Use those as incentives when it seems that your kiddos are being sluggish and watch them work!
7. Remember that you don’t have to finish everything
I taught public school for 10 years and we never finished an entire text book. Many times the material is reviewed at the start of the next school year so don’t put extra pressure on yourself to finish every single lesson. Do what you can and when it’s time for summer break, pat yourself on the back for what your homeschool did get accomplished.
8. Give Yourself Grace
It’s all OK mama. I promise. You and your children have worked hard all year and they have learned more than you probably realize. Forgive yourself for the mistakes you made this year or what might not have gotten covered as much as you wanted it to. Be proud of what you did and take some time to recharge as a family.
Summer is almost here and the school year is almost over so have a little fun, get outside, get moving, get creative with your lessons, do those lost experiments and most importantly celebrate what you got accomplished this year.