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How to get your partner to help homeschool
Let me start off by saying my husband is really proud of our son’s progress since we decided to homeschool. Hubby’s chest puffs up when his son recognizes words and states facts you wouldn’t hear from most six-year-olds.
I want to slap my husband.
Now before you think I’m going to pull drive-by spousal assault, I’m not going to hit my hubby. Have I thought about it? Yes, but hasn’t anyone who’s been married for more than a minute?
I’m the teacher, baker, and candlestick maker. I establish Keith’s routines and chores throughout the day. I’m the one that fights with our boy when he wants to be silly and grinds her teeth when he misses something I think he should know.
I also bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and I can empty the garbage better than he can.
Sorry, not sorry. Okay, okay, I’m sorry.
Like a lot of you, I know I handle way too much and I do it because I feel my way is the best way to do it. There I said it. I know it makes me come off like a control freak, but most ladies out there will agree with me that moms have a certain way of making the impossible, incredible.
I’m going to trademark that.
But guess what homeschool divas and dudes? (I know they’re some guys out there rocking it too), it’s lonely at the top. Homeschooling, much like parenting, isn’t a job for the faint-hearted.
Homeschooling also isn’t meant to be done alone. Like the African proverb says, it takes a village to raise a child. Moms and Dads, even if one partner works full-time, the work should be done together.
97 percent of married couples in the U.S. homeschool their children. In most cases, one parent works while the other stays home. The breadwinner seems to get a pass in homeschooling.
Is this fair?
My situation is a little unique. For now, I work from home full-time. My son is young so I don’t need more than an hour with him. My husband works full-time too, and thankfully, close to home.
I do 99.999999 percent of the teaching. I’ve asked for help, mostly if he can laminate the tracings I use to help Keith write his name. I also ask if he can go over sight words with our son.
My husband makes dinner for my son because I log off the computer in the late evening. He also gives him a bath and makes sure he brushes his teeth. I know that’s more help than some women get, but I want our son to feel that both his parents have his back when it comes to his learning.
I’m all for girl power, but some things require a man’s touch. In 2010, less than 20 percent teachers in the U.S. were male. If we’re fortunate enough to have a caring man in the home or a part of our lives, how can we usher them into this experience without nagging them about it?
I wracked my brain and scoured the Internet to find some creative ways to include my husband in homeschooling. I came up with some ideas to help you and me get our significant others more involved.
This is one I didn’t expect to find but it makes total sense. You can’t ask your mate to help more with homeschooling until you forgive. If you’re stewing over the fact, your SO walked right past you while you’re struggling to keep junior’s attention, you’re not ready to ask for help.
Another good reason you need to forgive is resentment clouds your thoughts. Thoughts become words and words become heated if you begin with you never (fill in the blank.)
I know it sounds super simple, but granny was right when she said you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Our honey is just like our kids; they love to hear how well they did. The more you praise your sweetie, the more they want to do for you.
Women are born nurturers while men are born clueless. Sorry had to tell it like it is. I know a lot of us have been carrying the load for a long time, but early in the game, they may need us to guide them.
Once your kids feel comfortable with the other parent teaching, take a breath or a break! Don’t be a helicopter and hover. Trust me when I say your kids will let you know if your love muffin is messing up.
Let It Go
The other parent will never be as good as you. Now that I’ve said it, go forth and paint your toes, watch Netflix, even cook dinner without hearing, I’m hungry. Until you can walk by the learning area without giving your two cents, resist the urge.
At some point, you have to relinquish control and trust your partner has your kids’ best interest too. This isn’t a license to dump all the duties on the other person, because, after all, this is why you’re ticked off, but a chance to make learning a family thing.
To wrap it up, we’d all like to go back to a time when online meant hanging clothes out to dry. Dad worked, Mom cleaned the house wearing pearls, and kids played outside. Pfffft!
In the new millennial, we’re faced with challenges our grandparents and even our parents didn’t have to deal with. Parental involvement means all hands all deck. Homeschooling isn’t any different. Our kids should benefit from the educational and life experiences both parents have to offer.
How about you? Are you pulling all the weight on the homeschool journey? Does it feel like your partner is taking you for granted because you stay at home to teach the kids? If you’re one of the lucky ones who has a helped a partner get on deck, please share your comments and suggestions below.
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