Quick Intro: there are many habits of highly successful homeschoolers that we could apply to ourselves. Flexibility and knowing when to ask for help are examples.
Only 3% of students in the U.S. were homeschooled before 2020, but since then, homeschooling has surged in popularity. More and more parents are seeing the value in having more control over their children's education.
Are you considering joining them?
It's a big step to take, but for many parents, it's also the best step. But how do you become an effective homeschooler?
Let's talk about it. Read on to learn our top six habits of successful homeschoolers that you can start emulating and always be prepared. Read on to learn more.
This is, perhaps, the most valuable habit or trait of successful homeschooling parents. It's also one of the hardest traits to develop, so it's something that you have to commit to working hard on.
When your child is in "traditional" school, they have a set structure for their day. Their teachers are responsible for making any necessary modifications, so they're the ones that have to be flexible. They have to spread that flexibility across an entire classroom of children!
Lucky for you, you only have one child (or a small number, at most) to homeschool. It's far easier for you to be flexible, but it will take some getting used to.
Children need structure in order to thrive, but there will be some days in which the plans will have to change. Your child may feel tired, unwell, or just uninterested in what you had planned for the day.
Instead of being too stuck to your plans, exercise some flexibility. Make room for change and allow it to happen instead of trying to resist it. This will make homeschooling far less stressful for you and your child(ren).
This may also open you up to new ideas and opportunities! When you're flexible, you have to be more creative by default.
2. Knowing When to Ask for Help or Support
Homeschooling can feel lonely and solitary, but it doesn't have to. Remember that behind every successful homeschooler is a strong community and network of other parents, educators, and mentors.
Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel, why not accept a pre-made curriculum made by other experts and homeschoolers? There's no reason that you have to start from scratch.
If you're feeling overwhelmed with too much time spent with your children, or you need a day off, take advantage of babysitting services or other local homeschooling parents who may be willing to help you. It's helpful to have a network like this available so parents can help each other.
If your child is struggling with loneliness, reach out to your community to find socialization opportunities, like community sports teams. You can even create a group for homeschooling parents and children.
Remember: it takes a village to raise a child. When you homeschool, you have the opportunity to craft your own village. When you know when to ask for help and support, or even when to work with a mentor, your job will get so much easier.
When you homeschool a child, you have to be an organization expert. You have what it takes! Even if you consider yourself messy or disorganized now, you'll soon develop the skills and collect the resources that you need to succeed and help your child thrive.
Remember that you're now responsible for planning classes, keeping track of all learning materials, and tracking your child's progress. This is a lot of work, so you're going to need to learn how to organize your day and your teaching room(s).
When it comes to physical organization, we recommend investing in plenty of organization tools. You can also work together with your child to create some DIY organization tools (this is a fun and productive learning activity).
If you've never been one to keep a planner before, now is the time to start. We also recommend having a large visible schedule that both you and your child can refer to during the school day.
4. Always Wanting to Learn and Grow
Many people make the mistake of assuming that they're done learning when they reach adulthood. If you're teaching, you don't still have to learn, right?
Wrong! As soon as you start teaching your child on your own, you'll realize how much you still have to learn, and that's a good thing! Stay open to that growth and learning.
Teaching is all about exploration. Any long-time teacher will tell you that they're always learning new things, sometimes even from their students. Education changes with the times, and information becomes outdated. You need to keep up!
When you maintain a lifestyle of learning, your child will adopt that from you. They'll develop a love of learning and exploration that will follow them for a lifetime.
5. A Willingness to Accept Being Wrong
This one is tough for parents, and it ties into wanting to grow and being flexible. You need to be able to accept when you're wrong and know when something needs to change.
Believe us: you will be wrong a lot. That's okay! That's part of the learning process.
When you accept your mistakes, you'll set a good example for your child. You'll show them what it looks like to try again and to not feel as though you've "failed" because something didn't go to plan.
This will also help you provide a better education for your child. Instead of sticking with what you think you know, recognize when your information might be outdated!
6. The Ability to Let a Child Lead the Way
When you start the Montessori journey with your child, you accept the fact that your child is now at the helm. You're guiding them through their education, but they're leading the way.
One of the most important features of the Montessori curriculum is that it's child-led.
For some parents, this is difficult. You have plans and ideas and you want your child to learn so much every day! Sit back and let your child explore on their own (within reason).
These Are the Habits of Successful Homeschoolers
If you're ready to start teaching your child at home, try to emulate some of these habits of successful homeschoolers. You don't have to be a perfect teacher all the time. You have to stay flexible, learning-oriented, organized, and focused on your child.
At Multisori, we offer a Montessori-style education experience to homeschooling parents. If you're interested in the Montessori method and you think it might be right for your child, check out our free curriculum sample to get started.