How to Use the New Year to Give Your Homeschool a Fresh StartApril Elstrom
We need a fresh start in our homeschool. We’re dragging our feet, and we’ve lost our joy. Some subjects were temporarily abandoned and the kids are taking full advantage of the “school can happen at any time” idea. In other words, they’re wasting a lot of the day away and quickly finishing up the necessary subjects before Dad gets home. Some of the blame falls squarely on my shoulders, and some of it is the result of unexpected situations this fall.
But if there’s one thing I love more than the start of a new school year, it’s the start of a calendar. It seems that every school year, we’re dragging by the time we get to December and we need our Christmas break. We also need a fresh, re-structured start in January. Am I the only one, or are you needing a fresh start, too?
So how do you revitalize your homeschool for the new year?
Evaluate the Curriculum Plan
Look at what you originally hoped to cover. What was abandoned? Is it something you need to add back in, or is it really better left abandoned? Can you group certain subjects or children together to simplify your lesson planning and teaching?
Examine Your Family Calendar
Have new commitments found their way onto your calendar that change what you can handle? Are there commitments that you need to say no to so you can better focus on homeschool? Do you need to change your weekly school schedule to fit around new commitments?
Create a Plan
What will your school week look like? If you’re adding poetry study back in (or even something more basic like spelling), where will it fit? Will you tackle certain topics on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and others on Tuesday and Thursday?
Reorganize the School Area
Clean up your school area. Make it fresh and new as a signal to the children that school is starting over! Invest in some new supplies. (Hopefully you stocked up during the back to school sales and can pull those goodies out now mid-year!)
Have a Family Meeting
It’s time to let the children know about any changes you’re making. Apologize for areas where you’ve dropped the ball, and point out areas that they need to improve. Explain that it’s a new year and encourage them to view it as a fresh start.
It doesn’t have to be January 1 to implement this plan. You can take a few days and refocus your school year at any point. The sooner you recognize you’re off track and fix it, the easier it is to affect change!
Don’t forget to find encouragement for yourself, whether it’s in the form of a book or coffee with another homeschool mom. If you are re-energized and encouraged, it will have a positive impact on your homeschool students, as well. Excitement is contagious!