Is homeschool clutter taking over your home?
Unfortunately Summer break is ending which means homeschool clutter season is rolling in.
Yep, it has its own season.
Over the Summer we’ve enjoyed more free time, fun time and less scheduled days. Our time was spent doing absolutely nothing with no responsibilities…Wait… What? Umm no. That would be nice, but not realistic.
Yes, we do enjoy life and slow down a little bit in the summer, but that doesn’t however, mean that the house cleans itself or the laundry jumps into the drawers. But if you ask my kids that’s exactly what this means.
What I’ve noticed in all my summers of being a mom, my kids think that once the last day of school rolls off the calendar that it means they are free to do as they please, free to slack off on duties and just chill while mom does it all. Hmmm – I don’t remember sending that memo. And then when school starts they are still in relaxed Summer mode forEVER!
Guilt, Shame, and Overwhelm Can Steal Your Joy
Do your kids try to guilt you into doing their chores for them? [Whiny Kid Voice]”But moooom my friends are here and I don’t get to play with them that much anymore cause they are in school all day?” (Enter guilt for homeschooling and keeping them from their friends)
We have to be diligent in keeping these toxic feelings away. Don’t feel guilty for anything. We are raising adults not children. We aren’t slave drivers, but we do need to facilitate some rules and boundaries for them to be successful and thriving individuals.
Does homeschool clutter take over as soon as the first day of homeschool rolls off the calendar? (Enter stage left – overwhelm and stress)
We spend all that time getting our curriculum and everything organized in the homeschool organization challenge we don’t want all that hard work to get ruined in a week do we? Clutter and messes happen at warp speed in our house. So if I don’t have a plan in place to make sure everything finds its way back to where it belongs, homeschool clutter and chaos takes over.
Are you constantly yelling at your kids to get them to do what they know they are already supposed to be doing? [Mom Voice] “I’VE TOLD YOU 3 TIMES TO PUT THOSE BOOKS AWAY! UGH!” (Enter shame for yelling, Sigh)
We’ve all done it and we’ve all felt the gut wrenching shame that soon follows. Mommy Anger is something we don’t often talk about because it exemplifies our imperfections, but we aren’t perfect, no one is. When we feel like we are losing control and chaos is taking over we lose it. But if we begin to train our kids and draw them unto Christ this will happen less and less. Train their character and train their habits and you will have a better atmosphere all together. And don’t forget to do some inner work too. Once I started to be aware of my own stress level and sort through my emotions through prayer and reading the Word I began to see real change in myself with more peace and less mommy anger.
End Homeschool Clutter and Chaos
#1 Figure Out What Your Kids are Capable of Doing.
Sit down and make a list of the things that they are capable of doing. You know your child and what they can handle, don’t be afraid to give them something that you think they may not be old enough to tackle. They might just surprise you. If they can’t, give it to an older sibling. However, younger kids are perfectly capable of sorting, organizing and cleaning up their own school supplies. They have no problem getting them out, so they should have no problem putting them away.
#2 Make a Chore Chart for Each Child.
Have you ever noticed that if there’s no proof that you told them what chore they were to do they want to argue that you never told them to? Ugh! This was a BIG problem in our house. I squashed this one with PROOF! Yep, there is absolutely no way they can argue their way out of this one. I created a chore chart. This way they have to do the chore and mark it off EVERY DAY! I made it into a free subscriber printable so you can download by clicking the picture below.
When the homeschooling day is completed have a ready list for them to check off before they can have free time this will help to keep all those homeschooling manipulatives, books, notebooks and paperwork in order. I love this 3 tier paper sorter for my 3 girls to easily put their finished papers in at the end of the day. We also have a 9 Cube Organizer with a designated area for each child to put there schoolbooks back neatly when we are done.
#3 Do Not Give Them Free Time Until Their Chores are Complete
Make a list of expectations. A, B and C need to be completed before you can play with your friends or enjoy free screen time. Keeping the work before play rule is a great way to build character and raise responsible kids.
Everyone in the family should have designated responsibilities. The more things you can delegate to your children the more sanity you will keep. Mom, you should not be doing it all. It should be a family/team effort to keep the homeschool clutter away and make sure your home is somewhat tidy most of the time. Starting the next homeschool day with everything in place makes for a great start and a more peaceful day.
What are some ways you’ve kept the homeschool clutter under control?
Bonus tip and challenge to end the homeschool clutter once and for all! – I challenge you to, no I double dog dare you to turn up your favorite pump up song, round up the kids, set a timer for 5-10 minutes at the end of every homeschool day for 5 days straight and declutter! Before you know it your homeschool area/room will be free of clutter plus it’s really fun! Keep doing this every day after school and you will never see clutter again! If you take the challenge make sure you come back and tell me about it in the comments.
Do you need more tips and ideas to get your homeschool organized? Join the 30 Days to Homeschool Organization Blog Party and Challenge, and join the Facebook community!!
Also, don’t forget to check out the rest of the posts in this series so far 🙂
Forest Rose is a God Loving, Blessed Wife, & Relaxed, Eclectic Homeschooling Mama to 3 girls – 8, 11, & 12 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. She’s passionate about lifting moms out of the homeschooling trenches that are discouraged, overwhelmed or feeling alone or isolated. Her hope is to point them to Christ and equip them to rise up with a new found hope and joy within, that He alone can provide. Besides blogging, she also loves hanging out at her exclusive Facebook Group “Homeschooling 101 Community” that she started to help new homeschoolers thrive.