Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Tips for Homeschool Parents of Toddlers

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents
Homeschooling is not for the faint of heart. It is a tough job, but having a toddler thrown in the mix can make that job even harder.  While I homeschool a third grade boy and a kindergarten girl, I have a toddler running around wanting to be in the middle of everything or making trouble in the corner.  Here are some tips I employ to help make our day run smoother.

1. Start school during breakfast.


During breakfast, I am able to cover morning prayers, read alouds, a saint study, as well as some of our memorization work. All the kids are contained and a captive audience usually means a well behaved audience.  The slow eating speed of the toddler helps because the older kids are finished and can get another subject done before the baby brother finishes his breakfast, so it feels like so much work is complete before breakfast is cleaned up off the table!

2. If you have multiple kids, use the bait and switch routine.

This is the most used tactic in my house.  While I work on school with my son, my daughter plays with the toddler. I try to have them in another room of the house or playing with a craft quietly. Another idea is to have special toys that are only brought out during this time.  After I have worked with my son, I switch them around. Now I work with my daughter and my son plays with the baby! This works in the morning and then in the afternoon the kids can work independently on the rest of their school.

3. Snacks!

Toddlers eat often. Snack time contains all the kids (see #1) and they can get some work done while nibbling on an orange.

4. Stickers!

Toddlers love stickers. For Christmas this past year, our toddler received a sticker set. There was a sheet of stickers that went with a background and Miles could go to town putting stickers on everything! He needs help getting the stickers off the sheet, but that is easy to do while reading or just overseeing some work at the table with the older kids.

5. Naptime!

To be honest, I hardly ever do school during the toddler's naptime. I am an introvert and I spend that time recharging. I send the kids outside and I just sit in the sun, read a book, or do some minor cleaning. I try desperately to take care of me during naptime because I am not a good mommy if I am over stimulated and cranky. Lately, I have been joining the naptime with my own naps.

There are some days I try all these techniques and school just crumbles to pieces. That is ok!  Homeschool is not a race, nor is it supposed to be the be all of life. Living as a family together has many natural learning moments that I can relax in my knowledge that things will be ok. Most weeks we only school about four days because we have the flexibility to school throughout the summer. Having a relaxed attitude about school helps everyone enjoy it more, learn more, and be gracious to each other.


Check out more Tips for Homeschool Parents on our Blog Hop:
Dawn @ Double O Farms
Dawn @ Guiding Light Homeschool
Debbie @ Debbie's Homeschool Corner
Desiree @ Our Homeschool Notebook
Diana @ Busy Homeschool Days
Diana @ Homeschool Review
Emilee @ Pea of Sweetness
Erin @ For Him and My Family
Jen @ Chestnut Grove Academy
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