Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ode to Homeschooling Mamas

Let it be known...let me shout it from the rooftops for all to hear:

Homeschooling mama's are amazing!!!!

Seriously, how do you do it? How many of you had backgrounds in teaching prior to making the decision to homeschool?!

This week, I have essentially been a homeschooling mama...with two of my three school aged children home with (what I'm assuming is) H1N1, all week long, we've gotten some homework from school to keep up a little (or try).

But, geepers, Lou!! I find myself saying things like, "1+1=2, what do you mean why? Just because, that's what it is! What do you mean you don't understand?"

I know. I'm awful...but I don't have the foggiest on how to teach!?!?! When I try to explain something, I'm always questioning if I'm doing it right, am I explaining things over their heads or way beneath them?!

I think I need a donut.

And we've only been at it for, oh...3 minutes.

Sigh...I just feel like grabbing the darn worksheet and filling it out myself!

Throw me in a room with a mama and a crowning baby and I'll perform like a well oiled machine...throw me in a room with my kids and their math home work, and I'm all gummed up, rusted out, broken down.

Help me, my friends!! Tips, ideas, suggestions! (wanna just do it for me?) I'm clueless, and I feel like a horrible mama...for Pete's sake, I should be able to help my second grader with her math!!!

Homeschooling mamas, you have my undying respect, admiration, and love.

Yes, it's true, homeschooling mama, I love you.

You're amazing!


  1. Oh honey I wish I could help you but math just ain't my thing. And to think I'm going back to school in January to get my teaching degree. Scary!

  2. I'm not homeschooling but when I have to help my daughter with math, I use drawings or objects (apples to add, cakes or sweets to divide, etc...), practical examples :-)

  3. As a homeschooling mama of five I feel your pain, lol! For little ones (at least mine) it as all about seeing and touching and doing. We did math yesterday with chocolate chips...makes subtraction take on a whole new meaning when it involves eating chocolate. Then again so does life in general! Kim

  4. I'm not a homeschooling mama, but I do understand the struggles of helping with math! The one thing that I've found helps a LOT is to allow the problem to be visual for them. If they're trying to figure out what 1+1 equals, then find something to count with (we use marshmallows or chocolate chips!) and put one in front of them and one a little farther away and put them together. I've found that, when they can see the problem, they can understand it a lot better than when they're just looking at numbers on a sheet. Hope this helps - good luck! :)

  5. Hey I just gave you an award and tagged you for a blog hop if you want to play along. You've already gotten the award before so you don't have to do it again but just wanted to let you know!

  6. Your post title caught my attention, haven't visited in a bit... I like your new look and banner.

    You're funny. You'd do fine at homeschooling if you really wanted to do it. It's frustrating when you only get them for a few days. You'd think I'd have advice for math...but I just followed the book. Maybe you could call the teacher and see if she/he has any suggestions.

    Good luck!

  7. If I were you I would ask your 2nd grader how the teacher does it. My son is in first grade and his teacher won't send home anything to the parent to tell us what is due she tells the kids and ... by golly they remember!! I am in college now preparing to be a teacher and from what I am learning in my Math for Elementary School Teachers class is to see what the child knows first and build from there. I hope that helps!

  8. Sounds like you are having a blast... I home school the kids I nanny once a week. It is challenging. Although what I find the most challenging is getting them both to do their work at the same time when they both need my attention. The thing that works for teaching them math is having a visual aid. So if you are doing 1+1, take out 2 apples and actually show it to them. Or, for bigger concepts, use examples that include people they know or toys they like. Believe me, I am NOT a teacher either, but I have found these things to work. Good luck! Hope everyone feels better soon!!!

  9. I'm sorry I don't have any advice (I'm a journalist, not a teacher!), but an antedote to make you feel less overwhelmed!

    My mom is an elementary school teacher, and over the past few years, they've changed the way they teach math. Now, instead of "Facts are facts", they have to "prove" even the most mundane calculations with diagrams and drawings. Even my mom thinks it's nuts and is having a tough time adjusting to the "new math". So don't feel too bad!

  10. Amen sister! Heck, my oldest is only at "school" for 2 mornings a week and I already breathe a sigh of relief that they will be helping to teach him. Like cleaning up for instance...hope they have some teacher tricks up their sleeves!

  11. You can do it! I'm sorry your kiddos are sick, I'm glad to hear they have been given work to do at home. I'm also glad to hear you're doing your best at helping them - it is unbelievable how many parents just wouldn't even attempt it.

  12. I am a homeschool mom and I would not change it for anything. ( well maybe Orlando Bloom hehehe)

    I have my son doing MATHUSEE and I think its the best thing since sliced bread.
    It is not like being in a class room. Thats the beauty of homeschooling. Its at your own pace and letting your child take the lead at times.

  13. OMG I'm totally with you on this topic! Just last night I was helping my 2nd grade daughter with her math homework and I felt like I needed to go back to school myself!
    Hope your kids get well soon. I think the pig has invaded our house as well :(

  14. My mother home schooled me and my 2 siblings till about 8th grade and She sure was an awesome teacher! I wish I had some advice for you but the only thing that comes to mind is patience.. Lots of it. Good luck! :)

  15. Very sweet- hope your gang is getting better fast!

  16. As a 1st Grade teacher I would use manipulatives (mini m&M's are great and kids learn they can not eat until they are done!) I use manipulatives daily in the classroom to teach math.
    Start with concrete items (ones they can move), then go to using abstract (drawings, fingers, diagrams) then to nothing. This gives children lots of ice and they can move it doing it mentally at their own pace.


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