SAYING NO WHEN HOMESCHOOLING A LARGE FAMILY
is part of the Write 31 2017 Challenge.
Read 31 Days of Life in a Large Homeschooling Family for more posts.
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Saying NO when homeschooling
It all seems so wrong doesn’t it?
But when you homeschool a large family, you will have to say “no” quite a lot. And it brought a lot of peace into our home.
In the beginning, you will tend to say “yes” to all the good things. But we the days go on, you will start to realise that not all of these activities are necessary or best for your child and family.
Being selective in activities
While homeschooling does not necessarily mean schooling only takes place at home, it may mean exactly that for a season when you have a large family.
Nowadays, with homeschooling gaining popularity with lots of younger families, there are lots of outside activities for a homeschooled child to participate in. One therefore needs to be selective in the choice of activities.
Learning to defer to the younger ones’ needs
When there were more littles than big ones the nap times of the little one came first. Because if the baby does not nap he is grumpy which means mama is grumpy too. A grumpy baby most likely means I end up carrying the baby a lot which makes me more tired, which makes me even grumpier.
We tried a few times to join in all those fun activities. Henson even took off from work to help out. But all we ended up with was a whole lot of grumps! Me included.
To make matters worse, the next day was shot too. I was tired. The kids were tired and nothing got done. That meant that one day’s outing was equivalent to 2 days of no work.
Not very productive
Plus there was not a lot of learning happening either. In fact the children were picking up certain behaviours I was not pleased to see being repeated at home with one another.
So. no. For those with only children or just 2 children, these activities are helpful for them. But for us, we have enough children at home for them to play with each other. And honestly? I’d rather focus on teaching the children to get along with each other first.
Is it boring?
Maybe. But Henson and I made it a point to have our own regular homeschool field trips on our own. We used to bring them out a lot to the zoo. We would also visit places like Hay Dairies, Qianhu Fish Farm and Bollywood Veggies and the like. Then there were visits to the beach at Sentosa and the swimming pool at Sengkang and SAFRA Yishun where there were slides and changing rooms with warm water!
Saying NO when homeschooling
Saying “no” has been very helpful for all of us. There was just less stress all around.
But as the children grew up and became more independent, they take public transport to wherever they need to be or I just do a drop off and pick up. Plus there are no more babies or toddlers who need to nap. There are lots of opportunities for us to say “yes” now.
Don’t let FOMO hold you back from saying “no” for a season.