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Let it go. Let it go.

Let it go. Let it go. (Hmm, that could be a song). In other words, let go of or lower your expectations.

When we first started homeschooling back in Alaska 11 years ago, I created a schedule for our day based on Waldorf ideas and when I submitted it to our advisor she called it a “regimen.” She meant well but it gave me pause.

Looking back, I see that I could have been a little more relaxed about our days. I was stressed trying to create the perfect rhythm for my girls who were 6 and 31/2 years old. Along the way, I’ve learned to relax about how things get done and get learned at home.

I have let go of trying to force learning or how to learn with my girls because: 1) it simply doesn’t feel good; 2) it hurts our relationship; 3) it takes their responsibility and motivation for learning away from them.

Also, when a child is being forced to learn something and they’re resisting it, their brain isn’t going to be in a state to actually learn anything anyway. I let go of trying to teach my oldest daughter math when she was 8 because it would turn into a fight and tears. I exposed her to math learning material along the way, but never pushed it.

Now, suddenly, on her own at 14, she’s jumping into Algebra and enjoying it. And, my 12 year old daughter, who never wanted to read books, just dove into a 488 page book and is flying through it.

If you’re homeschooling for the first time (whether your kids will be going back to school or not), let go of expectations of having the perfect schedule or the perfect curriculum, having the perfect student or being the perfect teacher.

I would encourage you to make your relationship and having fun together the priority. Don’t worry. They’ll catch up when they’re ready to or whenever school is back in session. And they will probably learn it more quickly because their brains will be more developed and they’ve had a chance to relax and rejuvenate.

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