Welcome to the Ultimate Guide to Simplifying Homeschool. This is what I love. Writing about how we can focus on homeschooling by getting rid of all of the distractions that get in the way, is a passion of mine. So I have complied a mega-list of resources to help you get started.
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Simplifying to me is about getting back to the basics and to the core of why we are homeschooling in the first place. We are homeschooling to teach our children about God and to give Him glory each day. So much of our time is poured into our children, we don’t want to waste any of it on things that are distracting.
Over the years my views have continued to push me to live more simply in all areas of my life and that includes homeschooling. Please visit the different categories on the sidebar of this page to read posts about simplifying many areas- family, cooking, home, etc.
So how does simplifying apply to homeschool? There are so many areas that benefit from simplifying. Let’s break it down.
Clutter Control. Face it, as homeschoolers we have tons of stuff. Flash cards, games, maps, books, office supplies, science experiments, craft supplies…the list is really endless. We live in our homes, but we also school in our homes and that can mean lots of piles of “stuff.” So as homeschoolers, we must learn to control the clutter. Start by keeping only what is nesessary. What bears fruit? Or what just makes clutter?
I like to keep everything simple. I like to keep things organized. I feel much less stressed when everything has its place. For instance, my boys love Legos. We have a great way to store their peices and take them with us when visiting friends. We used an old tackle box from a garage sale.
We also use simple plastic bins for daily assignments. As I have stated before, homeschoolers can get caught up in how their homeschool “looks.” Truth is, God doesn’t care if you use pretty baskets from Pottery Barn or platic bins from the dollar store. Focus on function, not beauty. Focus on keeping it simple and manageable.
We have simple plastic bins for each child that contain hanging file folders. Each assignment for the day goes into a folder. This helps foster independent work as well.
Repurposing items you already have for use in your homeschool means less clutter. You do not need to spend a lot of money on fancy supplies. You can repurpose things from around your home and be a good steward of what you already have.
Here are some examples:
Ebooks. Control the clutter by investing in a Kindle or other e-reader. Yes, I love books. Yes, I love the feel of a book and we still own tons of them. Yet an e-reader is helpful in downloading books to take on the go, or to just manage clutter. The Kindle Fire is a wonderful tool in our homeschool because of the many educational apps. Also, there are always many free ebooks available for download. Can’t beat free.
A Household Binder. I keep a binder with tabbed dividers for all-important household info-manuals, receipts, meal lists, recipes, coupons, stamps, thank you notes, phone number lists, etc. Everything is in one place.
A key to simplifying your day is to plan meals. It is a must. Visit this post to read about how to simplify meal planning. There is also a free printable available here to help you plan. You can also find simple recipes under my Simply…Cooking page. Some other meal planning site are available:
Books that have inspired me to simplify in my homeschool:
Educating the Wholehearted Child
For the Children’s Sake
A Charlotte Mason Companion
The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas (easy, cheap, fun ideas for everyday learning)
Charlotte Mason’s Original Home Education Series
Favorite Websites that help keep it simple:
Simply Charlotte Mason
SpellCity(awesome way to organize spelling lists)
Home Educating Family (everything in one place-reviews, 24 hour convention, planners, articles)
Shining Dawn Books
Holy Spirit-Led Homeschooling
A Holy Experience (just encouraging for keeping focused in all aspects, not just homeschooling)
My Well Planned Day (online planner)
Heart of the Matter Online (great encouragement)
The Busy Homeschool Mom
Finally, always remember why you are homeschooling. Get on your knees and submit your homeschool to the Lord. Pray and remember why you are doing this. Not to keep up with anyone else. Not for how things “look.” We are educating hearts for eternity!
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