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What’s one of the first questions all new homeschoolers are asked? “What will you do about chemistry and algebra?” Then, you start wondering how you are going to teach algebra and chemistry. Down the rabbit hole you go. What about art? How will I teach French or Latin? It’s enough to leave you awake at night in terror! In fact, the fear of teaching keeps many moms from homeschooling.
I’m here to let you in on a little secret…you do not have to teach a single lesson. I know, you probably either fell off you chair or are considering me a raving lunatic. However, homeschooling is not about teaching, it’s about education. You are an advocate, a manager, a facilitator, and most importantly you are a mom!
The Real Job of a Homeschool Mom
We have been conditioned to believe that an education can only come in a school via a professional teacher. Now, teachers are wonderful people! They work very hard to do the best they can for their students. But, that’s school, not education. To be a teacher, you need a school and a certification. You also need textbooks, desks, school supplies, and a grade book. The problem comes when we confuse being a teacher and being a homeschool mom. To be a homeschool mom all you need are children to educate, and a heart to give them the best education you can. That’s it!
You are not in the business of being a teacher! Your job is to lead your child. You are his advocate. Your job is to create an education that serves your child best. You are his champion. He does not need to be on the same track as everyone else. He is his own person, let him spread his wings and soar!
What is Outsourcing
Outsourcing is simply having someone else do the work you need to be done. We do this all the time. We hire contractors to fix up our kitchen and get a pizza delivered when we don’t feel like cooking. Outsourcing is a part of life. No one is an expert in everything. We all have special gifts and special needs, just like our children. Outsourcing for homeschooling is no different.
If your child needs a subject that you can’t or don’t want to teach, you don’t have to! If you have 8 children and can’t keep up, you can outsource! There is no shame in this. This is what successful managers and advocates do! After all, you are already outsourcing karate, soccer, and dance. Right?
How to Outsource
The answer to that is however you want! Outsourcing does not have to be hiring a private tutor or enrolling your child in an online academy. Those are definitely options! Not everyone can afford that, though. I get that, believe me. My outsourcing began on half a shoestring budget! Here are some ideas for outsourcing that will not only maintain your sanity, but give your children the best education possible!
- E-courses: There is a course for everything today. Some are free, some are pricey. You can find ones that are live and others that are at your own pace. I promise you, though, if you look, you will find something that not only teaches what you need but fits your budget.
- Audiobooks: Audiobooks revolutionized our homeschool! Many textbooks are available on audiobook. It allows children to complete textbooks even if their reading skills are not to that level. (I highly recommend the Apologia ones!) You don’t have to just use textbooks, though. Find a great book (fiction or not) that covers the material you need. If you want recommendations, let’s chat!
- Video/audio courses: Before there were e-courses, there were courses on tape and DVD. These are still a viable option. This is why Teaching Textbooks is so successful. Math curriculum that is hands off for moms.
- Family and friends: There just might be someone you know who is dying to do algebra with your child. Honestly, there are people who love algebra. I know because my friend, Emily, is one of those people. She didn’t just say okay when we asked for help, she actively campaigned and enthusiastically offered her services just because she loves math. Amen, alleluia! Thank you God for Emily, because I have never gushed over doing quadratic equations.
- Co-ops and programs: Co-ops offer the chance for moms enthusiastic for math, science, language arts, etc to teach their passion in exchange for other moms doing the same. This multiplies the learning opportunities for children exponentially.
- Self-directed learning: This is the ultimate outsourcing and should be your goal for your homeschool. We want to raise lifelong learners. That starts now.
No matter where you are in the outsourcing needs, I highly recommend you trying it. You could outsource one course or your entire curriculum. Don’t be afraid, like anything you can always try something new. Our outsourcing journey began when we tried Phonetic Zoo for spelling a few years ago, and it was life changing! TOTAL GAME CHANGER! You can do this, mama, because you aren’t just a teacher, you are a homeschool mom hero!