How Can Homeschool Moms Do It All?

This guest post is written by Melissa Batai.

“How can homeschool moms do it all?” That was a question a mom asked me a few years after we started homeschooling. The answer is simple. Homeschool moms can’t do it all. However, you can take steps to make your life and your family’s run more smoothly.

Lower Your Expectations

The first thing you have to do is lower your expectations. I find that I can do a good job cooking homemade meals and homeschooling my children. However, cleaning the house often falls by the wayside. Sure, I would prefer a cleaner house, but there’s only so much I can get done. Over the years, I’ve lowered my expectations. You’ll be happier if you do the same.

Set Priorities

The best way to lower your expectations is to set your priorities. What are the things on which you can’t compromise? Maybe you want to provide your children with a good education, and you need a clean house. Perhaps meals aren’t as important to you, so you eat sandwiches every lunch and the same handful of easy dinners every week. That’s fine. If you establish what is most important to you and get those items done each week, you’ll be happier, even when other tasks and responsibilities have to slide.

Don’t Compare Your Family to Other Families

C.S. Lewis said, “Comparison is the thief of joy,” which is such an important, powerful piece of advice. Focus on your own family and what works for you. Sure, the homeschool family down the street may have their kids involved in competitive sports, music classes, and scouts. However, they may not homeschool the way you do. Maybe their home is a mess, or they pick up fast food every night.

Honestly, who cares what other families do? Focus on your own family and your standards and priorities. You’ll be much happier that way.

Multi-Task When You Can

Look closely at your schedule, and you may find you have more time than you imagine. I love to read, but I struggle to find the time. Now, when I take my kids to circus class, I read for the entire hour they’re engaged. Sure, I watch them, but there’s no reason to sit there for 60 minutes only watching their practice. Likewise, when my girls take piano lessons via Zoom, I use that time to get some of my lighter freelance work done. When I walk on the treadmill, I listen to an audiobook.

Also, multi-task with the kids when you can. When you drive kids to an extracurricular activity, take the time to also listen to an audiobook for your curriculum. Then, you won’t have to find additional time to read it to the kids later in the day.

Have Kids Do Chores

You’re just one person, and you can’t get it all done. You shouldn’t have to. If there are other people in your household, they can all chip in and help with the chores. Maybe you can rotate each child doing dishes one night. One or two children can weed the garden. As your kids get older, they can take turns making dinner one night.

When you delegate basic chores to kids, you’re allowing yourself to allocate time for the responsibilities that only you can do. Anyone in the family can do dishes, but only you can teach your five-year-old to read, for example. More importantly, your kids are learning valuable skills so one day they’ll be able to successfully live on their own.

Don’t Micromanage How They Do Chores

Remember when assigning chores to encourage your children. They likely won’t do chores as well as you would like right away. Learning how to do household chores takes time. Even if they never learn how to do chores the way you would like, be thankful that the chore is getting done. Would you rather wash sheets yourself and fold them meticulously or let your child do it and fold the fitted sheets a bit more sloppily than you would like?

Make Time for Self-Care

Finally, make time for self-care. A homeschooling parent has many responsibilities. Life can get stressful, but you won’t be able to help your family and encourage their growth if you are sick or unhealthy. Take time to read a book, get some exercise, or chat with friends. You’ll come back refreshed and better able to fill your role as a homeschooler and parent.

Final Thoughts

If you wonder, “How can a homeschool mom do it all?” rest assured that she can’t. She’ll need to relax her standards, prioritize her time, seek help from other family members, and make time for herself.

Although your days are busy, know that these homeschool days are fleeting. Before you know it, your kids will be teenagers. They will be leaving home to move out on their own. Then, you’ll have so much time that you won’t know what to do with it all.

Looking for additional tip on homeschooling? Be sure to check out my book Homeschool Hacks, available now wherever books are sold and Amazon!