Giveaway #6: The Imperfect Homeschooler’s Guide to Homeschooling

Do you feel like other people homeschool better than you do?

Do they seem more confident, more accomplished, more patient?

Do their houses look like model homes compared to yours?

No matter how it looks to you, there are no perfect homeschoolers. We all have our challenges as we do our best to teach our kids every day.

What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to raising, educating and loving your kids 24/7? Leave your answer as a comment on this post by midnight on Friday, April 16, and you’ll be automatically entered into a drawing for a brand new copy of The Imperfect Homeschooler’s Guide to Homeschooling, a book packed with information and advice gleaned from my 20+ years of homeschooling.

43 thoughts on “Giveaway #6: The Imperfect Homeschooler’s Guide to Homeschooling

  1. My biggest challenge is achieving balance, particularly on two fronts. The first is balancing the expectations of my husband with home education. The second is balancing our home education between academic development and the development of the child as a person.

    Trying to meet the expectations of my husband to come home to a prepared meal and settled children in a tidy home needs to be planned into my home school routine. At present this is an imperfect balance and something I am sure I can improve.

    However, I find trying to meet the emotional and personal development needs of each individual child so much harder to work into our home school day when there is bookwork and chores to be done and outings to attend. Trying to be mindful of their need to learn good habits, care for others, and care for their emotional well being are no mean feat.

    Any help on these fronts would be appreciated!

  2. My biggest challenge is myself. After 16 years of homeschooling, I sometimes get bored or, worse yet, selfish and want to do my own thing.
    By God’s grace and with much prayer and seeking His face, I manage to keep on the path.

  3. I have such trouble with days when I have to shop or run a quick errand and then try and settle down and do school work. I just can’t focus at all on the task of schooling : (

  4. The biggest problem is making them want to continue to be home schooled and working with peer pressure.

  5. Right now I have to remind myself that at their age (4 and 1) playing is how they learn.

  6. Our biggest challenge is just getting up and moving in the morning. All of us tend to be night owls who like to sleep late, but we also realize that we need to develop better habits than sleeping in until 10 or 11 each day. A constant prayer is that God would grant us “blanket” victory for each new day.

  7. My biggest challenge is to balance the many demands on my time on a normal day, let alone days where things are extra busy because of piano, appointments, grocery shopping, etc.

  8. My biggest challenge is keeping up with the housework and school while suffering from exhaustion and depression. A very close second is homeschooling the teen with two busy preschoolers.

  9. I, too, struggle with balancing home and homeschool. The other issue for me is not looking back in regret at what I haven’t done and haven’t accomplished. Thanks for hosting this – I’ve wanted to get this book for some time – would be great for my two teenage boys.

  10. Biggest Challenge – so many to chose from. I guess the tug between trying to prepare them academically and the desire to see them grow spiritually. We start each day with worship, prayer, bible, but I really want it to be more than just another subject we are trying to get through to finish our school day. Add a very large age span into the mix and a somewhat burned out mom who is “trying so hard” and feeling like a failure many days.

    Thanks for the chance.

  11. I think I share the struggles that others have mentioned, the struggles that many of us face in our fast paced world. I struggle, mostly, though to slow down, raise my children mindfully, and remember that progress, not perfection is the goal. I often feel like the father, the son and the donkey in Aesop’s fable, and I have to remind myself that, at the end of the day my children’s well-being and my family’s happiness is what I need to fulfill, regardless of what others think or do or expect.

    Thank you for a wonderful site, and thank you for hosting these generous giveaways!

  12. I struggle with balance – between academics and spiritual growth, household chores and homeschool time, trying to be a good wife and still being a good mom. I have to continually recheck my priorities to stay on target. Trying to learn to “number my days” because the time is slipping away.

  13. I think my biggest challenge is TIME. I have so much I want to do. I have so many responsibilities that I end up feeling overwhelmed. Sometimes dh will come home during the day and find the house a disaster and things undone and wonder what I’ve been doing all day. I often wonder myself where the time went. Did I get to spend any time one on one with the children??? Did I get any time to myself??? Did we accomplish anything today??? The day is gone and I still have so much to do!

  14. My biggest challenge is being consistent. We’ll start with a routine that should let us cover school work to DH’s satisfaction–he likes a lot more structure than I do, keep up with daily chores–inside and outside, we have a small farmstead, and not feel rushed or overwhelmed while doing it. After a day or two, I either give up altogether, or change things so much we are starting over all the time. I don’t stick with things to completion and this is rubbing off on my children. I know if something isn’t working-routine or curriculum-I can and should change it–ie. not be a slave to a curriculum or schedule. I think I use that as an excuse too much.

  15. My biggest challenge in homeschooling is remembering that academics and testing is second to raising godly children. I find this especially difficult during testing years and with my youngest whose learning style is not the same as everyone elses.

  16. My biggest obstacle as a teacher, so far, has been indecisiveness. I second and third guess every choice I make and then look for something new when it isn’t needed.

    Thanks for sharing your insights,

  17. My biggest challenge is spreading my attention out between my 4 children! As soon as someone asks for help, I have 2 others that clammer for my assistance as well. Also, my selfishness is always an issue, something the Lord is always working on me about.

  18. My biggest challenge seems to be shared among others, it seems. I struggle also with time, indecisiveness, procrastination and my big one is worry. I worry I’m not doing enough and I’m constantly comparing myself to others’ and of course, that’s never bringing me forward (sometimes, yes, but usually not). I feel like I’m alone in my venture, but that’s partially my own doing. On a positive note, the longer I homeschool the more confident I get. As a result, my son’s day is customized to fit he and nobody else. I daily depend on the Lord’s hand at work.

  19. My biggest challenge is with time management. I need to be more consistent with the time school begins and to be flexible when things like appointments or other happenings interupted the school day.

  20. Hi Barb! My biggest challenge is that my new high schooler wants me to be Mom, “a softie” and not teacher. And I struggle with that too knowing that she does really have a hard time with paying attention and remembering. It can be hard to be the teacher and the mom for her. Never experienced trouble with this with any of my children until this year with her.

  21. My biggest challenge this year has been all of the newness. We moved here last August and it seems like our schedule has been under everyone else’s control but ours. I’m already looking to see how we can do things differently in the near future so that appointments, lessons, shopping, etc. fall on the same day and we have larger chunks of work time.

  22. My biggest challenge is figuring out scheduling for my son. He has cerebral palsy, is wheelchair bound and has lots of physical limitations, including handwriting and zero speech. His schedule is always changing because of all the therapies and doctor visits we have to keep up with. I’m thinking I’ll never get this to a point where we know what’s next!

  23. My biggest challenge this year has been managing our activities and our school time. There is just so much that is offered and I find it difficult to either say “no” all the time or run the risk of being over committed. I am struggling to find a happy medium!!

  24. My biggest challenges are 1)keeping my focus in how we’ve chosen to homeschool. It is very easy to compare yourself to others or get caught up in tantalizing (read expensive) curriculum. 2)The other challenge is knowing when to push my children a little to excel and when to back off.

  25. My biggest challenge is trusting in God’s sovereignty when my plans are disrupted by whining, disobedience, quarreling, messes, etc. I tend to panic when these things happen or put off doing what I need to do because I don’t want to deal with interruptions. It sounds silly, but I am thankful that God has revealed this to me so that by His grace I can grow in my faith.

  26. Hello,

    We have many challenges…We are currently homeschooling our 5 Special Needs children… 2 are ADHD and Learning Disabled…1 has a Seizure Disorder, and Memory Deficit..1 is Bi-Polar, Learning Disabled and functions between age 3 to 7 on average…We believe he falls more under the Autism Spectrum..However, I am only his mother, not the specialist…LOL..and the other is Dyslesic, Learning Disabled with a Comprehension Disability…I must keep a tight schedule each and every day in order to maintain an ounce of order…LOL

  27. My biggest challenge is trying to keep my children on task. They would much rather sleep really late and watch cartoons lately. My son has a vision deficit that causes it to be difficult for him to focus and I have to remind myself that much of his frustration can stem from this. I have a friend who tells me,”Just call it unschooling and be done.” I wish I could be that relaxed!

  28. A balance….is there truly one? I’ve not found one. I finally get around to getting one thing down and while I feel I’ve accomplished something with that I loose track of the others. I wish to find a way to bring everything into harmony and balance in my home.

  29. I can always get more encouragement for my homeschool. I have learned so many things the hard way and regret that I cannot start over again from scratch, but I know it isn’t too late to do some things differently and to learn from past and present mistakes. God bless!

  30. Hi Barbara~

    I love your work and would be BLESSED to win this book! We have four children ages 6-14 and I can ALWAYS use so much more help and I know your book will help me or who ever wins.
    THANK you for letting me know about this contest!

    {{{{Love and Hugs}}}}}

    Tammy :o)

  31. Homeschooling is a family’s journey. It goes from preparing for the trip, making it through each day, and looking for the final prize at the end. The wonderful prizes at the end are children who have life skills, a sense of who they are and what they believe so that they can go out have wonderful lives and impact the world, in small and large ways!!!

  32. After reading the other posts, I am having trouble narrowing it down to one – so many of the challenges mentioned are mine, too! Among many others, I would that right now my biggest challenge is know how much to challenge my 9th grader. He’s oftentimes capable of so much more than I realize, and definitely more than he used to be, so I really struggle with knowing what is his best in each area so that I can expect it of him…

  33. I was hopeing this book would be one of your giveaways! My chalenge is homeschooling 5 children from 4yrs to a 16 yr old! I am learning that I need to be a bit more structured and I tend to be overly right brained. I always worry if I am doing enough is my son going to be ready for collage?

  34. I have to continuously remind myself that I am not to compare myself, and my teaching methods, etc. and my child to others. God has us on a special journey. Only He and He alone can guide and direct us. I need continual encouragement since my family and my husband’s family doesn’t support us homeschooling our daughter. I also struggle how to get my daughter to apply herself and to do her best. Sometimes I think she just doesn’t care about whether she learns or not. Thanks for an opportunity to win this resource. It would be such a blessing to have it! 🙂

  35. I struggle with consistency, how to get the subjects in, planning ahead, and how to spend time with each child..esp having something for the other kids to do while I work one on one….in essence…everything!

  36. My biggest challenge is taking on too much and keeping homeschool at the top of the list of priorities. I work outside the home, take care of my father-in-law who lives with us, have my disabled husband at home all of the time, and try to keep up our home. When days get busy, I have to remember, first and foremost, that homeschooling is a calling and requires a priority stamp. I can do many things well, but I can’t do ALL things well, and I have to give myself permission sometimes to let certain things go.

  37. My biggest challenge is knowing how hard to push my kids. I have two with very different personalities and one needs more encouragement than the other. I’ve begun to notice that they’re trying to take advantage of it. The one who needs more encouragement is waiting to get it and not growing to be more independent. The more independent one seems be aware of the extra attention I’m giving to the sibling and she’s starting to slack off. What to do, what to do?

  38. One of my biggest challenges with homeschooling is balancing my time, getting everything accomplished I need to and being consistent in different areas of our lives. I have 4 children ages 9-3mo. I am also a military wife gearing up for another 4-5 mo deployment of my husband. So, it’s always a challenge trying to accomplish everything myself, while spending enough time with all the kids… Unfortunately, 1 of the areas I tend to lack in is my quiet time. I tend to trade it in for a little more sleep. Which is one of the most important things I need to be doing daily. While I know this 1 act will help balance out the above, I just need more than 5 hrs of sleep a night.
    Any help and suggestions are always appreciated.

  39. My biggest struggle is wanting things to be perfect but when they are not I give up….I lose motivation and let everything slide.

  40. Patience, patience, patience. Patience with the house and it’s less than clean atmosphere, patience with the expectations of others, patience with the expectations of myself vs. my reality, and patience to see the fruits of my labor in the kids. Maintaining gentle and loving patience, by far, is the biggest challenge on all fronts of homeschooling.

  41. My biggest challenge is trying to homeschool my older two with a very active and energetic 2 year old. I also can’t seem to keep the house in order while homeschooling. I feel like an utter and complete failure. I need lots of help and encouragement.

  42. I would love to win a copy of this book…i could use all the help I can get.
    My homeschooler is struggling with ASD tendencies and we are about to enter a very strange time trying to unravel all that this means.
    thanks for giving Me the opportunity to go in the draw.

  43. What I find most challenging is making sure I don’t let all the little things get in the way of the big things. Being to something on time is not nearly as important as the attitude I have while trying to get my kids to get themselves ready to go and all of us out the door. Or to remember that I need to slow down and let them explore or encourage them to “explore” instead of getting a predetermined list of tasks done. I find I am always in a “rush” to get somewhere and find I am never there while what I really should be doing is enjoying and doing the best I can now for my kids, my spouse and myself.

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