and pickup times. We are currently relying
on family members to help with childcare.
Yet our childcare situation is not solid.
Our parents are getting older and may not be
able to help indefinitely. With that in mind,
we are beginning the process of training our
son to babysit his younger sister for the time
between when I leave in the afternoon and
when my husband gets home.
We are determined in time management.
I can currently homeschool both children
in two to three hours a day. Factor in the
other parts of our day, and there’s not much
time left before I leave. As they get older
and their workload increases, managing
our time will become more important. I
am beginning now to train both children
to work more independently. I am also giving them more responsibility around the
house. Knowing that they can get their own
dinner if they have to, load the dishwasher,
and clean up the kitchen after dinner, will
go a long way towards lightening the load.
What other advice can I give those of you
who are working outside the home?
Let go of the “Mommy guilt” because you
cannot be with your children all the time.
Let go of the idea that you have to be the
perfect wife and mother. Let go of the idea
that you have to have a pristine house. Let
go of the idea that your students have to “do
Find a Support System
Find (and keep) a good support system, be
it family or fellow homeschoolers, especially if you work daytime hours. Childcare
centers that accept school-age children cannot accept them when school is in session.
You will need someone your children can
either stay with, check in with if they are
old enough and responsible enough to stay
home by themselves, or even someone to
instruct them. A fellow homeschool mom
may be willing to help with certain subjects,
for example, or even let them work independently as she homeschools her own.
Take care of yourself. Find ways to unwind. Continue your hobbies. Keep in contact with friends outside of work.
Homeschooling when both my husband and I work outside the home has not
been easy. However, with commitment,
flexibility, and determination, we have
made it work for us.
Karen Robuck is a homeschooling mother
Let go of the idea that your students have to “do it all.”
of two who, at the time of writing, were in
seventh and fourth grades . She holds degrees
from Blue Mountain College, a Christian
liberal arts college in northeast Mississippi,
and from the University of Southern Missis-
sippi. She considers her homeschooling style
to be literature-based eclectic with a dash of
Charlotte Mason. Formerly a teacher and
librarian, she is currently working in media
support for a local community college. She
lives in Pontotoc, MS with her husband, two
children, and four cats .