No, not the apocalypse, though as a homeschooler it almost seems that way! Summer! My goal each year is to finish our homeschool year by homeschool convention in late May at the latest. We still do some school-lite over the summer, but we end the current year and begin the new grade in June.
The end of the year brings so many emotions to different people. Excitement-- Only 6 weeks left! woohoo! Summer break! Pool, beach, sleeping in, no schedule...we love summer!
But then, the fear of....oh wait, only 6 weeks left?!? We have to get all of this done in 6 weeks?!?
Such a mix of emotions!
My husband and I just got back from a 4 night cruise. Such a crazy time of year and I can honestly say it was one of the best things we could have done. This time of year brings burn out, exhaustion, and just a desire to be "done!" In the midst of the chaos we took 4 days to sit by the pool and relax....kid free. Now I am back and ready to face the last 6 weeks head on!
A few tips to make it through the end of the year:
1) Finish strong. Don't give up. The summer will be here soon, but don't throw in the towel yet!
2) Be realistic. That art program you didn't get to all year? Yeah, probably not going to get priority in the last few weeks. While you finish strong, be realistic about what you can get done in that time.
3) Don't rush it. I know I face the temptation of cramming it all in to say we "got it done." I am a box checker by nature, I empathize! But, rushing equals wasted effort, your kids won't remember it and you and they will probably feel frustrated for the attempt. Be faithful, and be willing to do "more" if you ave to, but don't waste your time by flying through it.
4) Be flexible. If you didn't finish it, you still have summer and the fall...you can continue on if you are enjoying it. Break out of the 36 week box! Enjoy the learning process. And if you are not enjoying it? Feel free to drop it. You have my permission. ;) Find something that works. No, math may not always induce laughter and squeals, but it shouldn't produce constant tears either. Be discerning.
5) Enjoy it. It is so easy to wish away this time of year. We can't wait to get to the next "thing." Change up the routine, get to that fun read aloud you have been putting off, spend extra time cuddling on the couch. If you try to squeeze 10 weeks of school into 6, you and your kids will be frustrated and defeated.... Embrace the joy of homeschooling. And if you are further behind than you want to be? Step up. Work hard, go into the summer, take breaks, and make a plan so you don't find yourself in that pace again.
Sometimes life happens, and you feel "behind." That's where I am right now. A semester of family chaos has left us not exactly where I want to be. As I look to the next 6 weeks and am reassessing the plan, I am telling myself to finish strong, be realistic, don't rush it, be flexible, and enjoy it! Summer is coming!