Homeschool While I Work? You’ve Got to Be Kidding!
No, I’m not! It’s possible, if you are committed to making it work, that is! I’ve been on all sides of this in my ten year journey as a homeschooler. I get it! You start out at home full time and everything is running like a well oiled machine (or at least it looks that way). Then, Life hits…hard! You’re faced with the biggest decision of all: Do I stop homechooling because I now have to work or do I figure out how I can do both?
You can work from home!
Getting a job outside the home doesn’t have to be your first recourse! There are several things that you can do from home that will bring in the funds that you need to stay home with your family. Aside from selling things through an MLM, you can:
- Give lessons/teach classes
- Have a home daycare
- Get a call center/customer service position
- Start your own business
- Drive for Uber or Lyft
- Data entry jobs
It’s all about what you are comfortable with and what your family dynamic is. What can you do that causes the least amount of disruption in your family routine? One challenge I give to moms facing this dilemma is to make a list of twenty-five things that they know how to do and can make money from. Then I ask them which can they get going in the next twenty-four hours and to start there.
You can work part time!
If you can work outside the home, great! However, working full-time may not be the best. You have to be realistic about what you can do. For me, becoming a substitute teacher was the best thing for my family. Not only did it sharpen my skills at home, but I also had access to some great resources that I could use at home with my girls! So, think about something that you can do a few days a week that will add value to your home life!
Okay, so how would this work?
Now, we’ve gotten to the fun part. I’ve given you tips and now we need to talk about how to make this happen. It is going to take some sacrifice and you will most assuredly have to do the one thing that you hate to do most—ask for help! Here are some things that I can recommend:
- Working opposite schedules—if your spouse is flexible in this area, use it to your advantage. Yes, it will take work to get them to understand things; however, it will help you to understand more of what your family needs. My husband switched from the day shift to the night shift the week our oldest daughter was born and still works that shift some fifteen years later. Not only are we able to continue homeschooling, but I am also free to work if need be.
- Turning your kids into independent learners—we started helping our oldest to work on her own when she was eight years old. This is crucial if you have more than one child! When you have a child who is a self-starter, that makes it easier for the parent or other grown-up who is there with your children.
- Asking for help—if you have a trusted friend or family member who can help you out, use them! Some people will hire a sitter to come in and make sure that their children get their work done. If you have an older teenager in the house, it’s time to train them up to hold down the fort while you’re gone.
- Co-ops and drop off programs—if you know that you don’t have the help that you need, you may want to consider such an option. It is an expense and can be a daunting task; however, there could be something in your local area that will meet your needs.
- Get your family on the same page—everyone in the house needs to know who, what, when, where, why, how, and how much no matter which working option you choose! When your family knows exactly what to do and it becomes a routine, you can leave and know that the house won’t be hanging by the last brick when you come back. Develop chore and responsibility charts, set up a family command and communication center—whatever you need to do!
So, what are YOU doing this year?
Well, I am working, just not outside the home as much as I used to. At the end of the last school year, I removed myself from the substitute teacher list. I currently run a homeschool consulting business and am a business coach. Aside from that, I have penned and published over 20 books on life, faith, family, and business, travel as a speaker for homeschool and women’s conferences and events, work as a virtual assistant, sell lesson plans on TeachersPayTeachers, host an international radio show, and host business expos and events. I stay busy; however, all of these things are income producing activities that allow me to stay home with our three girls—a rising sophomore, third grader, and kindergartener. When I am out, my husband works with the younger two while the oldest works on her own. It’s not always easy to keep things going, yet it is definitely worth it. Yes, mama, you CAN work and homeschool!
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