Since we began homeschooling our idea of school has changed considerably, and so has our idea of the “school year”.
The first couple of years we really stressed out when it got close to the traditional end of the year. Right around the end of May, we would all start freaking out because it didn’t look like we could finish in time with the rest of the traditional school crowd.
It took us a long time to realize what works for us.
It was a horrible feeling of defeat, failure, and constantly being behind.
Then one day it dawned on me that we are homeschoolers!
That meant that while we were already breaking down every other boundary we could also break down the one that held us captive each year.
Yes, we could totally get rid of the “school year” altogether!
Of course, we don’t exactly brag to our family or neighbors that we are still doing school in the summer. The kids were quite convincing when they asked that we not go public with the information.
My kids have no problem doing a small amount of school each day.
We are no longer confined to the traditional timeline for school. When they finish something, they simply move on to the next thing.
This also works out great for my son who hates to feel behind.
Now when he starts to get stressed out I say him there is no such thing as being behind. You are right where you are supposed to be.
As long as he does something each day I’m fine with how slow or quickly he moves from one thing to the next. But I’m also fine if he is getting burnt out on something and needs to take a break for a few days.
We do try to get the bulk of the schoolwork like math and language arts done during the colder months when we are hibernating in the house.
But summer is the perfect time to spend hours reading, doing science experiments and other projects, or simply spending time in creation!
Not having an official end to the school year makes life so much easier at my house.
I don’t feel guilty taking a couple of days off here and there just because. We tend to take a summer vacation all year long when we need to.
Also, it makes spontaneous vacations a lot easier if I don’t have school hanging over my head. And I don’t mind setting aside the books and schedule if another opportunity arises or family comes to visit.
We do move our kids from one grade to the next at the proper time only because it makes life smoother when Grandma or a friend asks what grade they are in. But honestly, I wouldn’t mind throwing away the grades altogether.
Ever since we have officially let go of the traditional school calendar there has been such a feeling of freedom.
That’s what I love most about being a homeschooling family. It’s the freedom to find what fits your unique family!