Over and over again, I am asked how I homeschool with multiple children, through pregnancy, and with a baby. Currently our children are 6 years, 4 years, 3 years, and 1 year old. My husband works LONG hours, so the kids and I are alone quite a bit! While I can’t provide an expert opinion on this, I can share with you what has worked for our family over the last year.
As a homeschooling mother, I can’t stress this enough. We have a four day homeschool week. We take Wednesdays off because the kids and I need a buffer. I also homeschool around our social schedule when needed. If we have an afternoon event, then we get our schoolwork done in the morning.
Plan your day around the baby’s schedule. Additionally, if it’s a day we’re at home, I don’t start our homeschool day until the baby is napping. If these means we’re doing schoolwork near dinner time, then so be it. Sticking to the standard of others is not what we’re trying to do in this household.
If things don’t happen sometimes, then that’s okay. You need to give yourself grace.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve strapped Hallie to my back and gone on with my task. Babywearing is a lifesaver if you practice it safely (AKA no Bjorns or Snuglis). It allows mom to have hands free and baby can be close to mom at the same time.
Now, we don’t assign any sort of buddy system like the Duggars. If that works for you great, but let me be clear that that isn’t what I mean. I’m currently only doing formal schooling with my six-year-old and kindergarten readiness with my four-year-old. If I need to help Cheyenne log into Reading Eggs or help Matthew with his reading, one or the other is usually happy to entertain the baby for a few minutes.
While the older kids have their own toy room, we have designated part of our living room as a play space for the baby. Even if it only gives me 15 minutes, I can set up the older kids on their work and she’ll be occupied for that time.
You can do book work while your little one is sleeping, but if baby is up let an older child work on Reading Eggs or a learning app. I can’t tell you how many educational videos we’ve found on Netflix that involve nature, science, or something other than regular cartoons. A little screen time is okay.
So, there you have it! That’s how I’ve survived so far. What things do you do to keep your sanity by homeschooling with a baby in the house?