To Home school or send to public school..A mom in a dilemma?

I want to homeschool my 3 kids, ages 2,4, & 6. I have been trying to…quite pathetically, for a year. I have been on and off attempting to homeschool basically my oldest..and somewhat trying to include the others. I have been trying to teach him how to read. I suck. Not as a teacher, cuz I know I can teach…I…

I second what Randy G said.

You have three issues: #1 Your physical and mental well-being. #2 Your marriage. and #3 Whether or not to homeschool. Here is how I’d address them:

#1 Your physical and mental well-being. You need to make time for yourself. You are in a very unhappy place. This is very detrimental to your children. Your children are much more likely to grow up questioning their faith and with issues if you are unhappy and not secure in yourself. Parents who have issues do not raise well adjusted happy kids, regardless of whether they homeschool or not. There are a ton of issues of drama in your home right now. It will not feel like a safe place to your kids.

Focus on your physical health for a bit. Take the kids and go for a walk. Set up a babysitting co-op with some moms at your church and get some “me” time. I personally don’t think the need to be happy and healthy yourself is stressed enough by homeschooling advocates. Sometimes there seems to be a “martyr mommy” contest within some groups. She who suffers the most and puts everyone in her family above herself wins. No they don’t. Kids raised in disfunctional families grow to have the same issues.

I see the state of your house as a reflection of your mental state. It’s a question of which came first, the messy house, or the messy mind. Too often we think, “just do it”. But when you’re depressed, it’s really hard to get motivated. Take some baby steps. Take a walk. Go home and clean out a corner. Of course, different people have different tolerances for a mess. Mine is in the middle. Some really OCD screwy people can’t take anything out of order. And on the opposite end, a way out of control house can be a symptom of depression.

Again, put yourself first for just a few minutes. It’ll help everyone. “When mommy is happy, everyone is happy.”

2. Your marriage: Like everyone is suggesting. Get therapy, with or without your husband, but preferably with. It sounds as if he wants to be treated like one of the kids if he expects you to make the coffee, his lunch, the kids lunches, homeschool them etc. Even if he works, he needs to come home and do more than plop onto the couch and expect you to have sex even though he can’t show you affection. But that isn’t my place to judge. You need someone who is impartial for both of you to work through the issues.

3. The homeschooling: Homeschooling may be best, but don’t think that kids who attend school never turn out OK, or ever well. That is really about parenting, the attitude toward education that their parents have and other factors. Continue to homeschool if that is what you think is best, but if you can’t continue, don’t assume that a year or two in primary school for your 6 year old will ruin her for life. It won’t. Your being unhappy will be much more detrimental. Plenty of schooled kids grow up to be faithful, well-adjusted and happy.

You have value too and before you can be the best mom you can be, you need to be healthy.

Goodness. You seem to have a lot more on your plate than simply a homeschooling issue. So set that aside for a moment.

Crappy marriage: BTDT. Someone suggested to me marriage counseling, even if I went on my own and he didn’t come along. (?!?!?)
“What good would THAT do?”
“A friend of mine did it, and it seemed to work. They were heading towards a divorce pretty fast.”
“Like how fast?”
“Well, he had moved out of the house and into an apartment with a mistress.”
OK. That’s pretty far gone.
The basic argument is that you each play this lovely little game where you get caught in the same fight loops over and over again. It’s like getting locked into a dance. Sometimes the therapist can get you “unlocked” by suggesting a different response, and if you take an unexpected step, it can throw off the whole dynamic and the fight gets derailed. My spouse chose to come with me to therapy once I announced I was going with or without him because I was officially DONE with the status quo. That was almost nine years ago.

The house…well, I can’t talk, my place is a disaster, too. I joke with my friends that I should be featured on “hoarders” or some other type show, but they assure me it’s not nearly that bad. I also have a good friend who’s an interior designer and her house always looks like a freakin’ show home! Puts me to shame. I have a reallllllly high tolerance for that kind of thing, so rest assured that there’s always a load of dishes to do, a load of laundry (Mount Washmore) to do, and the dining room table is pretty consistently covered with papers and books. School projects nest on top of the freezer, and there are some oddly-placed telescopes and microscopes around the house.

Also remember that there’s no iron-clad rule that says you can never change your mind. A friend of mine had her kid in and out of public school in elementary, strictly homeschool in middle school, and the kid decided to go to a private high school. He graduated valedictorian and is majoring in biomedical engineering at an east-coast university. I’ve had one kid only in homeschool and one who has been to private school and been homeschooled. You can do things on a “trial” basis, too. So much is really going to depend on the kid in question and their personality, and the talent and personality of the teacher involved and the quality of the school you have available. What works for one kid won’t work for another, and that’s okay for both of them. But don’t look at it as all-or-nothing. Depending on where you live, you might even be able to access the schools part-time. A teacher who works down the street tells me that she has a student who comes in for class in the morning and goes home to finish up with homeschool.

The younger kids don’t really need formal education yet. Just do activities together and read to them. Have them do activity books while you do school with the older one. Sometimes it helps if you use a premade curriculum rather than trying to do your own thing. Sonlight and Christian Light Education are good. Sonlight is more expensive, but includes lots of literature books. Christian Light offers some good, inexpensive preschool workbook sets that don’t need to be done in any particular order.

My house used to be a mess. Now I made a rule we don’t go to bed until it’s straight. That means I do dishes while the kids clean their rooms and living room of toys, clothes, shoes, etc after dinner before doing anything fun before bedtime. The first week or two was a struggle for all of us, but it was worth staying with it. Sharing the workload really helps. Make it fun by listening to music. We do “sock hunts” where the kids stalk up on the dirty socks like they are hunting wild animals. Some men use s3x as a way to apologize and get rid of frustration. Never go to bed angry. That just drives the other person away more. Keeping the house clean and neat has helped rekindle my husband. He didn’t appreciate a messy house. It made him think I was lazy, even though I was busy all day.

EDIT: You need to expect disruptions and unexpected schedule changes when homeschooling.
That’s just the way life is. You can’t let it get to you or you will never get anything done.

Also remember Ephesians 4:26 “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath” That means it’s ok to be angry, just don’t do or say anything stupid because of it. And don’t carry your anger into the next day.

As to what would be better for what you described your dilemma, I would recommend public schooling for a little while. I’ve been home-schooled all my life(in 9th grade) and I always needed some structure to motivate me. No offense on your part there, but it’s always a lot easier to public school. Home schooling is really just what you make of it, it can be good or bad. Books can be expensive I know that for a fact but if you want to control your kids education it’s the best bet. But with what’s going on in your life right now, maybe you could try public schooling for awhile, at least until you can figure out what you need to do. (cover schools, book expense, etc) and tidy up a bit, and try to work with your husband (no advice there, to young!) But overall, with my experience being home schooled it’s made me a lot happier. I don’t dread days like I did attending school, (went for a week in 9th grade.) and overall it’s the best betopinionnion. there’s sometimes where I wish I did go as a child but I remember the great childhood I had and the bond I made with my parents that I wouldn’t trade for school at all. And if you do decide to home school and you’re looking for interactment you can always take your kids to groups, classes, sports. ect. And online schooling have a variety of choices now with age. I hope I helped and good luck!! 🙂

I would pause school for a few days or maybe a month. Just step back and take stock, you have plenty of time to catch up later, and the chances are you are not behind.

Think about what method of teaching you want. Do you need to be so structured? Do you need to sit up and night and write a schedule? What about you go to Schofield & Sims website and purchase curriculum school books which are great value and work through them. You don’t have to write your plans down that way. You don’t need to think about order and writing things down like a school teacher because you are not a teacher in school you are a mom. You have education at home, that is so different.

You could put the 2yo in bed and give the 4yo some toys to play with while you try one on one time with the 6yo. Once your 6yo has had his fill of mommy attention he will move on and play good so you can do the same for the 4yo. That’s how it works …you give them time and they will reward you by being content to occupy themselves for a while.

With regard to your house – you need to catch up and get on top of the housework. Why don’t you take the ‘pause’ time and fix a room a day until you are looking like you are organized again. You will find it difficult to school if clutter is piling up round your ears so please be mindful of that.

No wonder you and hubby are both a bit sad with each other. Get the dusting done and feel pleased with yourself, your relationship will follow when your house is pretty and your kids are happy.

Sometimes, letting go seems like the easiest thing to do. But think about this: you’ve invested so much of your time and energy into another person; you’ve made a solemn promise; and you still know there’s love, even if it’s hiding underneath the surface. This website will show you how to save a marriage and avoid divorce, even if you’re the only one trying

Oh, honey, take it easy. You’re overwhelmed right now. Take a deep breath.

If I were you, it sounds like getting the house in order will be the first step in getting life in order. So why not start there? Set aside a couple of weeks, go room-by-room to get rid of, clean and organize everything.

There are lots of great books on organizing. Once you do this you’ll already feel the load is lighter; it’s easier to keep up with.

Then it’s important to get the kids’ day structure and discipline under control– again, a lot of good books on this.

In the mean time, after the house is clean, start doing a lot of educational activities with the kids– get them involved with games, arts & crafts, reading stories, watching educational shows, etc.

Also get the kids involved with the cleaning & keeping things in order– get a chore chart going. Get a regular schedule as far as bedtime, wake time, chore time, homeschool time, clean up times, etc, if you haven’t already.

As you get more things under control, you can start introducing more structured lessons and plans.

Don’t expect everything to turn around overnight, but start working on one thing at a time. You can do it.

Well, schooling doesn’t seem to be the only problem…..

1. The Husband: get marital counseling. Make yourself follow through by setting an appointment and forcing yourself to go. However, first, talk it over with your husband. Don’t make a plan of “okay i’ll talk it first and then i’ll research and then…”. Just think about it in an outline format. “Okay, if he gets home from work and is ready to talk by this time, then I’ll talk about it and if we start an argument I’ll leave the room”. If the appointment never happens because he refused, then ask when he wants to talk about you and him specifically and then make some time during your day to just sit down and talk with him. Always be on your best behavior, no yelling, and step back if an argument starts. However, notice you’ll have to set the good example first. Make a thesis, not a battle plan.

2. The Housework: Read the answer to this —>…

That will give you a method to get your housework done. If even that doesn’t work, you’re just going to have to use some good ol’ self discipline and tell yourself to get over it and do it. Making a perfect little plan is NOT going to work because life is unpredictable and your plan is too personalized. It’ll never go according to plan, you’re just going to have to learn to be a quick thinker, adapt, and be happy and utilize what you’ve got at the moment. Speaking of which, the washing machine is broken. Take it to the cleaners. Can’t afford it? Ask a friend, family member, your neighbors (bring her cookies or something as a thank you or as a bribe to let you if you’re not on good terms). Don’t think of plans, think of OPTIONS you could take.

3. School: The world has always had evil people, ideas, and things. Although public school does seem to mush most of those evils together, a person’s character will not be influenced so easily if it has been become their solid foundation which has been taught, implemented and hammered into them from home. So think: can you trust your children to behave and follow the moral or religious boundaries in which you have set and taught them? Can you trust yourself to try to get involved in their public school lives and talk to them everyday or night about how it went? Can you notice if something is wrong with your child or think of ways to talk to them if they need someone to talk to? It’s not about how you FEEL right now, it’s about logic. After you’ve made a logical decision you can think of how you feel. So, for homeschooling (if you really want to do it, there’s K12 and Provost and other online homeschooling programs, you don’t need to make lessons when you can put them in online schooling), are your children responsible? Can they school online themselves while mommy is cleaning up the house or making lunch? Will they turn in work by themselves? Ask teachers questions? Will they wake up on time? Will you have time to make sure they’re doing what they should be? Will you have time to put in extra effort in case they don’t understand something? Don’t put your kids through something you believe is the right thing when you can’t even do it yourself. Homeschooling isn’t ‘easier’. Both have different challenges and awards.

All in all, you’re not just thinking about the kids when it comes to school. You should at least be able to admit that to yourself because it’s okay. School is not just about the kids, it’s also about the parents. It has to meet YOUR needs and your kids’ needs. Separate the two and make lists of what you need, what they need, and a list of what you believe in. Make a pros and cons list (an unbiased one) of homeschooling and of public schools. Then analyze those lists and make a choice (with your husband). Also make a list of options than plans. Rant to a friend if you feel emotionally stressed or drained, etc.

let me help you
pbs kids and coloring books can work for the youngest kids
also videos on youtube teaching colors,abc’s etc
for the oldest magic school bus and bill nye the science guy on youtube plus simple work books found at places like barnes and nobles also and their afflicted websites are GREAT
also the oldest should be in a homeschool group or attend the boys and girls club of america twice a week
to find your local homeschool group and boys and girls club of america and decide which ones the best option for your daughter lets pretend you live in atlanta here’s how u do it “homeschool group atlanta georgia” “boys and girls club of america atlanta,georgia” just replace your city and google it and go to the websites of them or get the phone # and call them
also you could have the youngest two go to daycare until they are in kindergarden and just focus on homeschooling the 6year old right now
i never got to go to one and i’m too old now but i wish i had gotten to go to a montessori school if u choose school for the 6year old look into that instead of public
remember you could send her for just a year then resume homeschooling

What are the dilemmas of public schools? I went to public school, and I turned out just fine. I was not “secularized”, nor was made “worldly”. They will have to learn to cope with secular influences and worldly people some time, so it might as well be through school, when you are still there to watch them and guide them.

Their faith, or lack thereof, will probably be influenced more by the example of mom and dad, than it will be through acquaintances that they meet in school.


May I respectfully suggest that you attend some marriage counseling? You children’s faith and academic performance will probably grow and flourish better if they have a stable and loving home environment.


Something else to consider: if you put your children in public school, then they will probably be a good influence on secular people who may never go to church, or read a bible. Matthew 5:14-16. If you take them out, then they influence no one.

Besides, I assume that you take your children to church. They will usually be taught in Sunday School how to respond to any secular influences that they encounter in school. And you can ask them each day when they came home what they learned in school today, and you can discuss it with them, and teach them how to cope. And you can always practice family devotions at home. And you can set aside some time for addition instruction in the afternoon, if you believe that they are not learning enough at school.

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