A mother’s job is never done, especially when she homeschools. But, these homeschool mom summer tasks should help you feel less frazzled in the day-to-day and enter a new school year with organization and refreshment.
Summer is a wonderful time in every childhood – weeks on end of late nights, fireflies, the smell of sunscreen, pools, sprinklers, watermelon, mosquito bites, and faces full of freckles. Memories are made, adventures are had, and children are given the freedom to commit to the most important of tasks – play. Hot days and cold drinks mean our children get to rest, explore, and take a much-needed break from workbooks and rough drafts.
Summer doesn’t really mean the same thing for us homeschooling moms, though.
Sure, we can sleep in if
we want the kids allow it and we can enjoy the sun and sprinklers with the kiddos. But someone’s got to make sure they put on their sunscreen, eat more than popsicles for lunch, and keep them from attacking one another.
We are granted the privilege of more relaxed summer days and a front-row seat to our children’s memories, but there’s still work to be done. There are a few tasks and preparations that are perfect to do during summer break that can set us up beautifully for success in the next school year.
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Homeschool Mom Summer Tasks
These homeschool mom summer tasks can be done at your leisure, but will go such a long way in organization and rejuvenation!
Organize Your Home and Homeschool
Summer break is the perfect opportunity to clean out, organize, and purge. Doing so will allow you to be more productive, fresh, and feel like you’re finally caught up when the next school year rolls around.
Starting with the homeschool space, go through papers, math manipulatives, art supplies, bookshelves, and the curriculum stash. Put things in their proper places, throw them away, or put them in a bin to donate. From broken pencils and dried-out paint pots to the dried-out nature displays – you’ll find plenty to clear out in order to make way for a fresh, clean, organized new school year in a few months.
This post about wrapping up the year is an old one here at Our Journey Westward, but there are still some valuable things that might help as you attempt to organize.
After the schoolroom is tidy, I tend to move from room to room in my house over the course of several days for a deep clean and purge session. The kids are often involved as we literally go from floor to ceiling with whatever tasks need to be done. You might even find us putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls of some rooms!
Keep Supply Lists
While you’re taking care of the business of organizing, purging, and cleaning, it’s also the perfect time to evaluate what you need more of. Keep a notebook nearby as you go from room to room.
While tossing out cracked colored pencils in the homeschool room, write colored pencils on a “homeschool room” page in your notebook. When you notice that there are only a few pages of watercolor paper left, add that to the list, too. And as you glance at that beautiful vintage map on the wall and remember it was a disaster when it came time to learn present-day geography, add an up-to-date map to the list as well.
I make a new page in the notebook for each room’s supplies. I certainly condense the list when it’s time to go to the store, but it’s helpful to remember exactly why I bought what I bought when I look at the original supply lists.
Be On the Leisurely Lookout for Deals
While you’re thinking about supplies, especially those for your homeschool, keep an eye out for sales or secondhand bargains. I’ve stumbled upon math manipulatives at Goodwill, science kits at yard sales, and living books in Facebook groups. Of course, July school supply sales cut many of my school and art supply expenses in half!
Treasures are often found where you least expect them, so when you’ve got an idea of what you’re looking for, things are easier to spot during your shopping adventures.
Audit Your Daily Plan
Summer is a good time to think about your daily flow and how it’s been working. Since homeschooling is a big part of your life, do an audit of your school days first. Did the after-lunch co-op interfere too much with nap times? Was art in the mornings too much mess before math? Was there a time of day when everyone crashed? Are you happy with the start and finish times of your homeschool day?
There are a million more questions you could ask yourself to help you reconsider a better, more efficient, and joyful plan. Or, instead of questions, simply identify the things that clearly did and didn’t work last semester and make a plan to fix the things that didn’t work.
While you’re busy reflecting on what worked and didn’t work for your children, consider yourself, too. Did you have enough time with each child? Did you plan enough time for a breather or two during the day? Did you feel like the kids helped out enough around the house? Are there any changes you could make to help everyone (including yourself) feel more peaceful and joyful? Organization or your day-to-day duties, as well as the organization of your physical space, are important to think about.
Your daily flow is much more than schoolwork, so don’t forget to audit the rest of your family’s routine, too! Think about things like bedtimes, wake times, chore plans, menu plans, blocks of time for errands, and even date nights.
Invest in Yourself as a Homeschool Mom
Refreshing the house, stocking up on supplies, and breathing fresh air into the daily schedule will feel so good when completed! There’s one more very important job for you to do, though. Rest.
The work we do is honorable, hard, and holy. The tasks before us and those behind us can drain us of much of what we have. We tend to kick ourselves more over what we didn’t finish than appreciate the ongoing investment we’re making in our children.
Homeschool momma, you need a little time for yourself. Time to pray, time to soak up encouragement and wisdom, time to read books and blogs that feed your soul. Whether it’s a weekly, moms-only coffee date or a single afternoon spent in the pages of a novel while the kids run through a sprinkler, the summer is as much for your rest and rejuvenation as it is for the children.
Invest in you. Pour into you. Don’t just spend time preparing yourself as a homeschool mom, but take advantage of the opportunity to grow as a whole person, a child of God, a wife, a friend. Pursue your hobbies, seek direction in prayer, and fiercely follow what feeds you.
I know there are seasons when this seems impossible, and it might actually be impossible for a short time. Whenever you have the opportunity, let trusted people know that you could use a break and then allow them to bless you with that important break time.
Set Yourself Up for Success
Summer is a gift, blessing, and built-in respite from the homeschooling work we love. I’ve enjoyed quite a few summers over my years spent homeschooling, and have found that spending them wisely not only makes for a smoother start to the next school year but also makes for a more refreshed and happy-to-homeschool-next-semester me.
Do you have any homeschool mom summer tasks that you do to set yourself up for next semester’s success?
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