Back to School at FamilyEducation.com
Home > School and Learning > Homeschooling > Homeschooling Support > Can I Handle a New Baby and Homeschooling?
|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Can I Handle a New Baby and Homeschooling?

Homeschooling Expert Advice from Isabel Shaw

Q: My husband and I were certain that we would homeschool our son. Then we got pregnant. Our son will be five in June and we are expecting our second child (another boy) in July. I'm very scared at the prospect of teaching the older child while trying to mother the youngest. How can I handle both at the same time?

A: I can understand your fears. A new baby is going to be a tremendous adjustment for your family. Starting school at this critical time may also be stressful for your son. My older daughter was four when my younger daughter was born. It was a wonderful experience. Instead of being sent to school, the older girl spent her days with her new sibling. She got to know her little sister really well, and nine years later, the two of them are still very close.

Try to remember that one of the greatest advantages of homeschooling is the gift of freedom. You do not have to (nor should you want to!) duplicate the school environment at home. When I was feeding the baby, we all cuddled up on the couch and I would read to my older girl. When I cooked dinner or baked cookies, we practiced reading (the cookbook) and using measurements. When I took the baby for a walk, we'd talk about the trees or stones or insects we discovered. Our walks would be followed by a trip to the library to further explore items of interest or to answer questions that came up. I'd pop in an educational video in the afternoon for my daughter, and I'd rest with the baby. In essence, we continued living and learning, just like before. Only now our activities were more varied and interesting.

At five-years-old, your son is not going to require a lot of academic work. He does not need a curriculum or lesson plan. Most boys his age are not ready for pencil and paper learning anyway. Please take the time to read at least one book about homeschooling before the baby is born. Homeschooling: The Early Years - Your Complete Guide to Successfully Homeschooling the 3- to 8- Year-Old Child or The Homeschooling Book of Answers, both by Linda Dobson, are good choices. Also, visit our How to Homeschool information center for more ideas and advice.

Good luck!

More on: Expert Advice

Isabel Shaw is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom of 15 years. She and her husband Ray homeschool their two daughters, Jessica and Amanda. Besides being a contributor to FamilyEducation.com, Shaw has written for Home Education Magazine, The Link, Homeschooling Horizons Magazine, The Homeschool Gazette, and other publications.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

14 Back-to-School Fashion Trends for 2014
Send your kids back to school looking sharp! Check out 2014's hottest back-to-school fashion trends, from clothes to shoes and accessories.

Put a Stop to Bedtime Struggles
Steer clear of tears at bedtime with these helpful bedtime tips and this printable bedtime routine checklist for kids.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!