I will be honest with you — this year has been a total fail with teaching my kids. My oldest is graduating, I am working full time online, and we have had to move twice in the last year. Suffice it to say — this year has totally blown, and I can feel the homeschool burnout setting in. It is a time as parents that we focus on our teaching abilities and how well, or in my case, how horrible we have done.
So what does homeschool burnout look like?
Tell me if this sounds anything like you.
- every time you look at a homeschool book, you slam it shut and grumble
- you compare yourself to other families who are homeschooling
- you can’t remember what you are supposed to be studying
- you find it hard to focus when you are teaching
- you dread getting started in the morning
- you find yourself daydreaming about doing anything other than school
It is inevitable — at one point or another the homeschool burnout will set in.
So, how do we get past it and get back on track? Here are a few steps that I do when I feel that all too familiar feeling creeping up on my back door.
1. Take a break
If you find yourself on the verge of homeschool burnout, take a break. It could be that your schedule has been extremely rigorous, or you have just not been creative enough and have pretty much just burned yourself out. Word of warning — if you are burned out, most likely, your children are burned out too. Take a break from the regular routine and do something different: take a walk, go to the park, take the kids out to lunch, go play at the pond, or do something other than sit inside trying to do school.
2. Change up what you are learning
A lot of times, what you are learning is the source and cause of your burnout. If that is the case, switch it up and do something different. Try doing a hands-on unit study that will give you more flexibility and creative ideas. Sometimes, that is all it takes — just a change in what is being learned.
3. Set some subjects aside until the new year
My daughter has struggled a bit with her Science and history this year. We tried really hard to get started and off on the right foot, but with everything that has gone on this year — it just has not worked. So for her sanity and mine, we set those two subjects aside for this year and will pick them back up in the fall. That is totally OK and your child will not falter in their studies. If you look at what is being learned, every 4 years, you go back over what you learned in the previous years — just on a deeper level.
4. Get encouragement from other moms online
When I am discouraged and find myself on the brink of the burnout, I go back to the women online who gave me encouragement early on in my homeschool years, as well as other women who bring out the best in me. If you need that kind of encouragement, find ladies online who are dosing out the daily encouragement and offering you a semblance of peace. You will find out that you are not the only one going through homeschool burnout. We have all been there.
The last tip I am going to share with you is this — when you find yourself on the brink of burnout, lock yourself away and spend some time in prayer and worship before God. There is nothing like being refueled and rejuvenated by the Father. He does what He says He is going to do, and if you come to Him tired and weary, He will remove your burdens and refresh you once again.
What about you? Have you found yourself in burnout mode? What do you do to help get refreshed and moving forward?