So you’ve decided to homeschool!
You’re excited to begin, and immediately purchase a planner/calendar, curriculum, supplies, and map out your days with your children.
All is going well. Your days and your heart are full to the brim.
Your children are happy and thriving.
Life is great!
But slowly, you begin to realize something.
That one thing that no one told you about homeschooling………
The truth is homeschooling can be very lonely.
Yes, our days are packed with activity, lessons, nature walks, field trips and sometimes our daily errands.
We are busy caring for our children in the midst of teaching them, maintaining a household, and perhaps even working.
Our days are centered around our family.
And while this is so fantastically wonderful, it can also be very isolating.
Grabbing a quick lunch with friends, or chatting over coffee in the middle of the afternoon isn’t always an option.
With kids most always in tow and lessons to be completed, our time and time management is precious.
And yet, we need our tribe.
We need those friends who come alongside, who listen, laugh, who offer a word of encouragement when needed, and who support us.
So how do we accomplish all that goes along with homeschooling and mothering, plus make new friends and maintain the ones we already had?
How do we avoid isolation?
Here are 5 tips that I have discovered during our own homeschooling journey :
- Join a homeschool group or co-op. We have homeschooled independently, we have joined small groups, and we have participated in a large co-op. Each of these has its benefits, however being surrounded with like-minded families is our favorite by far. Yes, our days are busier with the added co-op classes, but our family thrives in that environment. We have met many wonderful kids and moms. Each with their own way of homeschooling. Each with their own knowledge and expertise. Each with their own struggles. Each with their own stories. We are able to bond over this huge commonality. We are able to link arms, so to speak, and offer encouragement through our own experience. And our kids make valuable friendships as well.
- Start a book club. Co-ops not your thing? Grab a couple of mom friends and start a small book club. Your kids can participate with age appropriate books, and the moms can join in with books of their choice. Meet once a week, once a month, or whenever suits your schedule. You get that much coveted “me” time and your kids can hang out with their friends. Its a win-win!
- Join a Facebook homeschooling group. Facebook has a plethora of wonderful homeschool groups. The moms on these groups are so full of knowledge and most are willing to share and help however they can. These groups offer a small break from the daily routine and can easily be checked from your phone or device.
- Plan a night out. Whether it be a date night with your spouse, or a night out with a good friend, time away is important. Time to reconnect, refresh, at times unload, let your hair down, and just have fun. Taking time for yourself relieves stress and makes for a happier mama. Sometimes getting away is difficult. I get it. And I have been on both sides of it. I can say with confidence that time away, (even for just an hour), is so important. So, plan ahead. If finances are tight, find free or low cost activities in your area. Sometimes a simple walk through our local botanical garden is just what I need. It doesn’t have to be a huge event. A short amount of time where you can reconnect with your spouse or a good friend will make a world of difference.
- Join a women’s group at your local church. I have made many wonderful, lifelong friends through the women’s group at our church. One of the best things about it is that most of them offer childcare! Your kiddos get to have fun in their own classes while you connect with other mothers. I have loved my time in these groups!
There are many other ways to connect with others and avoid impending isolation.
What are some ways you have discovered in your own homeschooling journey?
I would love to hear! Comment below and share!