Back to school for homeschool is different than what many think of when they think back to school. Because homeschools have unique routines and schedules, homeschoolers don’t have set days that school is in or set days that they are off. However, back to school can apply to homeschoolers just as much as it does for public school, private school, or any other school. For parents it may mean getting new curriculum for the upcoming school year, new supplies, and setting up a lesson plan. Parents and students alike can use back to school time to organize the house, school space, set a schedule, and discuss plans for what they would like to accomplish during the school year. This may include discussing ideas for field trips and activities and setting up a schedule to see what needs to be arranged ahead of time, what time of year will be the best to do each, and make a schedule for what will be coming.
Back to school can be stressful, even back to school for homeschoolers, but just like any other back to school activities, making a list of what needs to be done and setting out a schedule and list of responsibilities can help ease stress and make sure that everyone is equally involved in the planning. When each member of the family knows what his/her responsibilities are and when they need to be accomplished, it will be easy to make sure that everyone is involved and that everything gets done. Everyone will be able to enjoy the sense of accomplishment and no one person will have to be overly stressed trying to do everything alone. Back to school time can be a great time to get the house cleaned top to bottom, take inventory, and get everything organized.
Back to school activities for homeschool can be very different in every household and can be very flexible, but once a plan is made everyone needs to stick to it in order to accomplish everything and to teach responsibility and accountability. One of the best things about homeschooling is that practical life skills are used every day to help teach our children all the things they need to know to be responsible, successful adults. For those that have a hard time sticking to a plan or remembering the exact plan, consider a form of parent contract that will keep everyone organized and let each individual know what is expected of them. If your homeschool has a method for rewards or positive reinforcement, be sure and include that in the contract so that everyone can see what they are working towards. Rewards could be anything from a special treat or favorite dinner, to a fun family outing. If possible, involve everyone in the planning so that everyone has a say in what they would like to be in charge of and the type of reward they would like to see. Being involved in the planning stage helps ensure that each person is committed to the plan.
Even though back to school can be a lot of work, coming up with some back to school activities can make it fun for everyone. A little bit of planning and organizing can go a long way in easing stress and getting a lot done. Visit Let’s Homeschool for a lot of great resources for homeschool curriculum, homeschool subjects, curriculum reviews, homeschool support groups, and much more.