Every homeschooling parent has days when she wonders if it is a good idea to homeschool. There are days when I want to pack up my child and send her off to school. Sometimes, I yearn for a mindless life, where I am not constantly emotionally challenged, where someone tells me what to do and where someone else cares for my kid.
Then I get a peek into her psyche and I realize that I wouldn’t have that glimpse if she was at school.
-I hear her explain to her doll that she has to have long hair to be pretty, so I can mention that there are a lot of ways to be beautiful.
-I see her ignore a friend and I get the chance to remind her that we are kind and attentive to each other.
-Then, I get to see her gently help the same friend wash her hands.
The beauty of homeschooling is that you have a million more opportunities to know your child and make sure that she knows that she is beautiful, smart and so loved.
Then there are the other days
There are nonetheless days, when the profound stuff doesn’t matter, and I just want to be alone. That is when I need an inspirational blog.
Keeping the joy when you homeschool is part of the job. Homeschooling families have to take time (schedule it, even) to remember that they are choosing this life for themselves and their families, and that they are very fortunate to have the opportunity to watch their children grown and learn.
If you have forgotten why you homeschool and are seeking a reminder to live in the moment and enjoy your children, look here. While compiling this list, I sought bloggers that worked to be inclusive to all homeschoolers. I only included blogs where there were a lot of comments and interactions. When you seek a blog, you are not only seeking a blogger, but an entire community. You will enjoy these 5 top homeschooling blogs:
Laura Grace Weldon considers herself “an author, farm wench, and relentless optimist.” She is the author of Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything. She says, “My children are, as I’ve always suspected, the Hope of the World. Everyone else’s are, too.” Weldon’s writing style navigates between introspective and practical, gently encouraging us to look at the big picture, and remember why we are homeschooling. In this piece, she reminds us that:
School-like instruction has been around less than a fraction of one percent of the time we humans have been on earth. Yet humanity has thrived. That’s because we’re all born to be free range learners. We are born motivated to explore, play, emulate role models, challenge ourselves, make mistakes and try again—continually gaining mastery.
Her writing is a lovely reminder to look at homeschooling as an endeavor to live a full, rich and interesting life.
I was distracted from writing this post for more than two hours to read Penelope Trunk’s blog. She went from high-powered business woman to a farmer’s wife. She brought her children with her and continues to generate her income with online startup businesses and by writing. It is fascinating to see a blogger be “honest” without revealing too many annoying and private pieces of information. Whereas the other blogs in this list are much more wholesome, Penelope’s blog has an edge that I really enjoy.
She touches upon subjects like the Public School to Prison Pipeline, the notion that Public School is a Babysitting Service, and how the Best Solution to Balancing Work and Family Life is to Homeschool. As she not only blogs about homeschooling, but about life, she includes articles like, “Choose Sex Over Money,” where she spells out the statistics of what really makes people happy.
Brenda Rufener writes The Homeschool Diaries. She attempts to put “the Humor in Homeschooling.” She warns readers that “Things get REAL around here.” Yet, the reality of the situation (and the hard work that it can be to homeschool children) does not stop her from inspiring and mentoring. In one recent entry, she asked readers to help a mom who was struggling, and over 100 readers helped her with thoughtful comments and suggestions.
She states, “I’m passionate about homeschooling and tend to say what others think. I love to laugh and poke fun of homeschool myths and stereotypes. I’ve offended many, but over 14,000 of you claim to like what you read. God help us all.” Some of her articles include “Do you regret your homeschool decision?” and “Ten Most Awkward Homeschool Moments.” Her first book “Homeschool Diaries” For Better or for Worse” is coming out this year.
The Soule Mama is Amanda Blake-Soule. Amanda raises five little ones. She is an extraordinary crafter and guru of a community of women who seek to create beauty in their lives and the lives of their children. Her blog is the creative mother’s dream. She has pages of beautiful craft ideas and meaningful projects to create with children. While she doesn’t write about homeschooling in a specific way, she writes “about our homeschooling experience in the sense that I write about our everyday lives, and our learning is woven into everything we do.” She chronicles her work with her children, as she teaches them to nurture themselves, be gentle with the world, and create peace and pretty things.
Jamie Martin encourages readers to “Never Let School Interrupt Your Education.” She has two blogs. One is Simple Homeschool, which she edits and creates with several other homeschooling moms. The other is Steady Mom, where she explores her struggles while offering encouragement to all mothers who see to connect with and sustain their families. Her first piece of the new year, for example, talks about how she recently reaffirmed that:
I want to be here this year–to soak every moment up, good and bad.
To not allow future or past to take away from what is. To relish every ounce of joy, even if I have to mine it out of an otherwise pathetic day.
To not mentally run away from the unpleasant–but to stay right there. Surrounded by love, life, and wild imperfection.
The Simple Homeschool blog has contributions from many writers, and it is edited by Jamie. Included are several “Day in the Life” entries, which provide marvelous glimpses into the homeschooling experiences of like-minded families. Jamie has written several books, including “Steady Days” and “The Steady Mom’s Freedom Guide.”
Get your inspiration on!
These blogs are all about helping you see the elegance and wonder in each minute that you get to spend with your children.
Coming Soon: Best Homeschooling Blogs for Math, Science and the Arts
As the homeschool blogosphere is so full of information, I am going to spend the next several weeks outlining the best blogs in each of these categories. I can’t wait to share with you what I find!
Feel free to share your experience, feedback, queries or concerns about homeschooling with me in comments below!