It never fails. Life in our homeschool will be rolling along just as planned. The kids will be learning so much, the lesson plans will get conquered each week and we seem to totally rock the science experiments.
Then the holidays come crashing in like a wrecking ball.
I don’t know about you, but it seems like I fall into the same homeschool funk every year after the holidays. After struggling with how to handle the disinterest, I’ve finally figured out how to hit the reset button on our school year.
5 Ways Refresh Your Homeschool When You’re in a Funk
I’m not the kind of person that can have the same exact routine day in and day out. I have to switch things up from time to time so that I don’t get bored. That goes for our homeschool curriculum too.
I’ve learned to expect that every year we will experience a period of time where the days start to seem stale. To prepare for these days, I’ve started to collect different kinds of curriculum to have on hand, just in case.
When I feel the homeschool funk lurking around the corner, one of the first things I’ll try is switching up the curriculum we use. Usually this means putting the textbooks back on the bookshelf for a while and working on unit studies and lapbooks instead. Sometimes making a simple curriculum switch is just enough change to make our school days seem not so monotonous.
There are times when switching the curriculum up still isn’t enough to help cure the homeschool funk. Even with a new set of material to learn from, we often times still feel like there is a lack of excitement or motivation to spend time learning.
This is when we usually ditch the curriculum altogether. Instead of following our typical lesson plans (or even our back up “plan”), we spend our days following our interests.
What does this mean? It means we spend a lot more time playing together, reading aloud as a family, and exploring as much as possible.
With the cold weather making it hard to spend time outdoors, it is the perfect time to hit up our local museums. We ask questions that we are curious about and then spend time researching the answers together.
Even without a curriculum and set lesson plan, we’re still learning everyday. Yes, even while we’re snuggled under our blankets reading stories together as a family.
Change up Your Schedule or Routine
When I say I have to change things up from time to time, that often means my routine or schedule. In fact, I have a hard time sticking to a regular routine, because I get bored with them so easily.
When we’re in a homeschool funk, I like to change up our routine to try to freshen our days up. If we normally do our school work in the morning, I’ll change it up and start things later. There have been times when I haven’t started our school day until after lunch. Other days I have started after dinner.
We are a family full of night owls, so sometimes we do our best school work when the sun has gone down for the day. That also has given my girls a chance to get some playtime in during the day, so they are much less fidgety and bouncy during school time.
Sometimes my kids are still in school mode, but my brain is in off mode. The thought of having to crank out another lesson seems almost unbearable and all I can do is dream about a day full of Netflix binging and naps. These are the days I’m secretly wondering if I should be putting them on the big yellow school bus each day.
Luckily, there are these groups of homeschoolers called co-ops where other homeschool moms band together to teach a group of their kids all at once. These groups can be glorious.
I’m fortunate enough to have a group close by that doesn’t require me to help with the teaching. That means on co-op days I can send my kids off to their respective classes, and I can take a mental break with my homeschool mom friends. Unfortunately, I know this isn’t an option for everyone. If you’re lucky enough to participate in a homeschool co-op like this, I highly recommend you give it a try.
Sometimes I’ve exhausted all of the above options, and still just can’t seem to get out of the homeschool funk. When this is the case, I decide to take a break altogether.
Yep, that’s right. I commit 100% to not worrying about our homeschool for a period of time. Well, maybe only 90%, because you know as a homeschool mom it is impossible to turn off our homeschool brains completely.
What I really mean is I spend more time doing fun things, which almost always turns into a learning experience of some sorts. Sometimes we break out the art supplies to practice our creativity or spend some time learning how to bake new yummy treats in the kitchen.
Taking a break in your homeschool is completely okay and can be a very helpful mental health break. When you feel like you’re ready to tackle the lesson plans again, both you and your homeschool will truly feel refreshed.
Just remember to actually come back from your break.
How do you refresh your homeschool when you are in a funk?
Jenn Roberts is a homeschooling mom to three crazy beautiful girls and a loving wife to her Star Wars obsessed husband. She’s fueled by coffee, photography, Netflix, traveling, and way too much junk food. She’s an open book and likes to keep things real. You can follow along with Jenn as she finds her bliss among the chaos of life at This Chaotic Bliss.