Deciding to start homeschooling can be scary, exciting, and overwhelming, and the list of emotions goes on and on. I have some homeschool tips for beginners to help you out on your incredible journey. I have three main takeaways for you today as you get ready to begin homeschooling.
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Homeschool Tips for Beginners
Moms, or dads, should first head to your provincial or state education website and formalize themselves with the rules and laws for homeschooling in your province.
Each province has very different laws and regulations and requires something different of you, for example, New Brunswick just needs you to fill out a form at the beginning of the school year, very simple.
Another example is Saskatchewan where each school district is different, and you are required to register, provide educational plans, and an end-of-year report.
Take a deep breath, grab a cup of tea, and some books to read.
Homeschool Books I Recommend for Beginning to Homeschool
Homeschool Books for Homeschool Moms
6 Secular Books for Secular Homeschooling
Do a Facebook search for homeschool groups in your area. This is the first thing I do when we move, I want to join and talk/”meet” other homeschool families right away. This is also a great way to find used curriculum as well.
Homeschool Tips – First Year
Things aren’t going to go perfectly the first year. Use the first year, or even the first two or three years, to find out what works best for you and your kids. There are so many different styles of curriculum and learning styles, that for the first year you might not land on what works for your right away, and that’s OK.
My homeschool advice is to not try to create school at home. Sometimes it’s more relaxing and enjoyable to sit on the couch with a read-aloud or even workbooks than at a desk or table. If you are enjoying it, you are more likely to stick with it long-term. You can find lap desks to make working on the couch easier, and neater, we have them and use them everywhere including in the vehicle.
Homeschool Organization Tips
I like digital homeschool resources that I can print off as needed and re-use for each of my kids. But digital resources do come with their own unique organizational challenges, one is forgetting what you have, and not remembering where you stored it on your computer.
What about lesson plans?
How are you going to keep track of your lessons, what you want to cover each day? Some people, myself included, are paper planners people. I like writing things out by hand. But some prefer online planners that send you email reminders, which I admit can be so very helpful like the Homeschool Planet planner, you can check out my review here.
I try to have a very rough idea of what I want to cover for the year for each of my kids. And then break it down into how many months we’ll homeschool so I know how much of each subject to cover each week.
For example, there are 118 lessons + 17 quizzes in Teaching Textbooks Level 3. That means for 9 months of school Brookland should be doing at least 15 lessons/quizzes a month. I now see she’ll be done very soon doing a lesson or two a day because she enjoys doing it.
There are many other options for keeping track of your plans including using Google tools, the calendar app built into your phone or computer. OR maybe you unschool or are interest-led and just want to keep track of what your kids have done.
FREE DIGITAL PLANNER
I have a Google Slides planner – 2-page layout that you can use and edit in Google Slides to create your own digital planner. CLICK THIS LINK to get a copy of it.