10 Tips Before You Start Homeschooling

Things you may need to know about before you begin your homeschooling journey.

Dr. Camia Jones

1/30/20246 min read

By Dr. Camia Jones


Need help on where exactly to begin your homeschooling journey? These tips should set you and your child up for success for their education.

In the ever-evolving landscape of education, more families are embracing the journey of homeschooling. If you're navigating the world of homeschooling like me, you're already a hero in your child's education. Whether you're considering homeschooling for the first time or looking for ways to enhance your current approach, we'll explore the best tips and resources that will empower you on this homeschooling adventure and set your little learners up for success.

Define Your Educational Goals

You must be willing to consider your child's learning style, interests, and your overall objectives for their education. Outline exactly what you want for your children, what you want them to become. By this time they've been in this world for sometime and you can see their personality and things they like. This may be as simple as your child love building blocks, so you now have set out for them to become a construction engineer. Now that you have defined the educational goal you know exactly how to get them there. By providing them with a road map of how to get to that goal.

For example your child must graduate high school, graduate college with civil or mechanical engineering and maybe even a MBA if they desire having their own company. So before diving into homeschooling, take the time to clearly define your educational goals. Having a clear vision will guide your decisions and help you create a customized curriculum.

Know the Legal Requirements

Familiarize yourself with the homeschooling laws and regulations in your region. Each locality may have specific requirements, so understanding the legal aspects is crucial to ensure you are in compliance. Homeschooling in Texas is governed by relatively flexible laws, granting families the freedom to tailor their educational approach. According to the Texas Education Agency, families can legally homeschool under one of three options: through a state-approved homeschooling curriculum, by joining a private or parochial school, or by filing a home school as a private school.

There are no specific teacher qualifications, standardized testing requirements, or mandatory state assessments for homeschoolers. However, parents must maintain records of attendance and academic progress. This autonomy provides families in Texas the ability to customize their educational experience, emphasizing individualized learning and diverse teaching methods within the state's legal framework.

Design a Flexible Schedule

One of the advantages of homeschooling that I find most rewarding is the flexibility it offers. There will be moments where you will have to break away, to maybe nurse your baby or even fold a load of clothes. During breaks such as these you can have the older child do a chore or take a brain break from work. Even though flexibility is good you still want to be sure to stay consistent in your schedule.

You should always begin and end with the same time, everything in between can be flexible. Create a schedule that works for your family, taking into account your child's natural rhythms, breaks, and extracurricular activities. Flexibility allows for spontaneity and adaptability. This makes way for your child to go at a faster pace than some other students would normally. For example in the public school setting your child can only go as far as the teachers lesson plan for the year. Although, if your child had demonstrated competency in the third grade work and is ready to move on you can do so in the homeschooling setting without any additional testing.

Choose a Curriculum or Educational Approach

Explore different educational philosophies and curricula to find the one that aligns with your goals and values. Whether you prefer a structured curriculum, a more relaxed approach, or a combination of both, there are numerous resources available for homeschoolers. The online program Khan Academy provides a free, world-class education to anyone, anywhere, making it accessible to a broad audience. The plus with this program is that it goes all the way up to college classes.

This platform offers video lessons that break down complex topics into manageable segments, making it easier for students to understand. Khan Academy includes interactive exercises and quizzes to reinforce learning. The downside is that they do not currently have and accredited version for their audience. Other examples of curriculums are Abeka which is faith based which could be a plus for those who are interested in such a platform. Hey, there are many others out there, just do your research and find out which one fits you best. Just to note some of these have trials do it doesn't hurt to try one and cancel if it doesn't fit your style.

Create a Dedicated Learning Space

This is the fun part, because you can actually be anywhere to learn and teach when you are homeschooling. Whether your family is on the road or out of the house at the park. Be sure to take into account how your child's attention span in these different environments to ensure the completion of said assignments. Establishing a designated learning space can help set the tone for focused and productive learning.

This doesn't necessarily mean a separate room; a dedicated corner with necessary supplies can create a conducive learning environment. Remember that changing the environment can help keep child looking forward to the activities of the day. I find that having the school day in different environments keeps the child eager for what the school week holds.

Utilize Online Resources

Take advantage of the wealth of online resources available for homeschooling families. There are plenty of educational websites, virtual field trips, and online communities provide support, inspiration, and additional learning opportunities. Also, there are many different free worksheets from online websites that you can print out to assist in the materials for learning.

Homeschooling parents increasingly leverage online resources to enrich their children's education. The internet provides a vast array of educational materials, interactive lessons, and virtual platforms, catering to diverse learning styles. Parents access websites offering curriculum guides, lesson plans, and printable worksheets, tailoring content to individual needs.

Foster Socialization

Contrary to popular belief, homeschoolers have ample opportunities for socialization. Join local homeschooling groups, participate in community activities, and explore co-op learning opportunities to ensure your child has a well-rounded social experience. Recently we joined Lifetime Fitness, at this gym they have a host of activities for the children in the Kids Academy. The children have access to different sports activities like basketball, pickle ball, gymnastics, and soccer. Also, activities like arts and crafts, yoga that gives them access to new experiences but also cater to new friendships. Another benefit is that they have a Learning Lab and you can request that your child complete homework during there allotted 2 hours at the gym.

We have also developed a community to within a Facebook group called Exploring Motherhood every month they have at least one Mama Meet Up were you can bring the children and hang out with other moms. This gives the child a sense of community, and as a plus for mama she gets out of the house.

Assess Progress and Adjust Accordingly

Regularly assess your child's progress and adjust your approach as needed. Flexibility is key in homeschooling. If a particular method isn't working, be open to trying new approaches until you find what best suits your child's needs. Websites like IXL and MiaAcademy allow you to track and print progress reports.

This gives you access to see directly where your child needs improvement. And the plus about these programs is it allows you to choose multiple different subjects. On IXL specifically, as a child completes exercises and assessments, the system changes accordingly. This offers more challenging questions if the child demonstrates mastery or providing additional practice in areas where they need improvement.

Emphasize Life Skills

Now being at home all day with the little ones cooking breakfast lunch and dinner can cause a lot of thing to be a mess. Instead of always not wanting others to help cause you like things a certain way, teach those children YOUR WAY of cleaning so they can be of service to you. Cleaning is a part of a life skill your children will one day need to have to maintain there lives.

In addition to academic subjects, consider incorporating practical life skills into your curriculum. Life skills such as gardening and sewing are skills that may one day become essential for us to know. Cooking, budgeting, time management, and problem-solving are other valuable skills that extend beyond traditional academics.

Stay Connected with the Homeschooling Community

Connect with other homeschooling families for support, advice, and shared experiences. Attend local events, join online forums, and build a network of like-minded individuals who can provide encouragement and insights.

Approaching homeschooling requires thoughtful planning, a commitment to flexibility, and a willingness to adapt. Remember, homeschooling is a dynamic and rewarding journey that allows you to tailor your child's education to their unique needs and interests. By following these steps and staying connected with the homeschooling community, you can create an enriching educational experience for your family.

This information is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only we do not accept an liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly from any information or advice contained here. Exploring Motherhood may earn compensation from affiliate links in this content.