We are homeschooling 7 kids ages 3-13 and while that may sound overwhelming, just remember that public school teachers have 20+ students in their classes and they are all roughly the same age! As the mom of our “students”, we have the advantage of knowing each child deeply and truly, and so our teaching methods can be adjusted and tweaked to better fit all of the needs in our “classroom”.
Of course, that doesn’t mean our job is easy, but the positives outweigh the negatives in my experience. As I was pondering what has gleaned successful results in our large family homeschooling journey, I outlined these seven tips.
7 Tips For Successful Large Family Homeschooling
- Define your purpose for homeschooling and revisit it often when you feel overwhelmed or discouraged. Remember your why when you are wondering how you can succeed. Read our personal homeschool mission statement, vision, and prayer for inspiration.
- Keep it simple on chaotic days. There will be days when everything seems to be whirling out of your control. On those days, remember your most important subject and let the rest slide. It will all be there tomorrow, next week, or next month.
- Remember that you are raising little humans and their souls are the most important part of them to nurture. Heart issues, relationships, grace, and forgiveness are more important than math or writing lessons. It all comes down to parenting while homeschooling.
- Choose routines over strict schedules. This applies to every part of your large family life, not just homeschooling. I am not saying you should ditch planning, but I am suggesting you try a new way of planning that works with your family’s life.
- Combine studies whenever possible. Teach multiple children using the same curriculum. For core subjects, it works best when the children are close in age, but often science, history, art, and more can be taught across several grade levels.
- Embrace a lifestyle of learning or delight-directed learning for some (or all) subjects. Surrounding your children with tools that fuel their love of learning, imagination, and talents will go a long way in them being independent learners. Children who are given a little freedom over their education will grab hold of the responsibility and thrive in most cases. Teach them, guide them, encourage them, and support them. Before you know it, your oldest will be choosing to complete assignments in science, creating videos on historical events, and inspiring their younger siblings to learn new things, too!
- Take care of yourself, mama! Desiring to be a Christ-like servant to your family does not mean that you neglect yourself in the process. I don’t encourage selfishness at all, but there are some essential things that you can do to stay healthy in mind, body, and spirit. You have been called to an amazing career, mission, and task… start and end each day by counting your blessings, seeking joy, and finding strength in Jesus!
These 7 tips for successful large family homeschooling may not be what you expected to find here. After all, isn’t homeschooling just about academics?
While it often starts out being all about “schooling at home”, we soon realize that it takes a lifestyle and attitude change to make homeschooling work. Living real life, learning, working, and playing together is really what homeschooling is all about!
Clarissa is a Christian, Wife, Homeschool Mom to 7 Children with Medical & Special Needs, Grieving Mom to 1 Child in Heaven, Homemaker, and Writer. You can find her at www.ClarissaRWest.com sharing practical tips & encouraging others to count blessings, seek joy, and find strength in Jesus.