Do you have a case of the “February Blues”? And Is it negatively impacting your February homeschooling?
The holidays are over, it’s the middle of winter in the northern hemisphere, and spring still seems oh-so-far away.
February can be tough.
In fact, there’s an understanding among homeschoolers everywhere that February is often the most challenging month of the year.
Many of us want to throw in the towel.
We entertain the idea of sending our kids off to school.
We fantasize about the end of the school year.
But does it have to be this way?
There must be some simple ways to incorporate more enthusiasm into our days!
How do we feel a great sense of joy and connection during the month of february?
Instead of just surviving, isn’t there a way for us to thrive!?
Let’s prioritize CONNECTION this month, shall we?
Quick note: For my friends in the southern hemisphere, I realize you’re experiencing summer this time of year, so feel free to bookmark this post for your winter!
Here are some simple ways to add more connection to your February homeschooling:
1. February Favorites
What are some of your favorite things? What about your children?
Brainstorm meals, songs, books, movies, games, places, and any other favorites you can come up with!
Take a few minutes and make a list of these things. At the top of the list put, “February Favorites”.
Now, here’s what you’re going to do:
You are going to incorporate as many of these favorites into February as you can!
Is pizza a family favorite?
Have it more frequently this month.
Do you have a child who loves to play board games?
Take a morning off from all other subjects and do nothing but play games.
Does your family have a favorite movie?
Grab some popcorn, cozy up under some blankets, and watch it together.
Spend February with as many of your favorites as you can.
2. Consider Outsourcing
I am a huge proponent of outsourcing!
It is a sanity-saving, community building, simplicity creating, LIFESAVER!
Is there a subject that is causing you some serious grief right now?
Does math make you want to pull your hair out?
Is science proving to be way too time-consuming?
Are you struggling to teach your children writing?
Then it’s time to outsource!
Maybe it’s time to look into an online math, science, or writing class.
Maybe it’s time to team up with another homeschooling friend and trade-off on teaching.
Or perhaps an in-person homeschooling class, co-op, or tutor would help you out significantly.
If you feel like you’re struggling right now, know that this is SO common and that you’re not alone.
There is no shame in asking for help.
In fact, I encourage you to outsource as much as you need to in order to feel like you’re back on solid ground.
For more detailed suggestions on how to outsource, including specific vendors, make sure to check out my post, Outsource Your Homeschooling to Save Your Sanity!
3. Book and Movie Combo
Choose a book that has a movie version as well. Spend time this month reading aloud together and then follow it up with a movie.
Looking for suggestions?
Factor in the age and stage of your children, and then consider one of the following:
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and movie
Curious George and movie
Charlotte’s Web and movie
Mary Poppins and movie
James and the Giant Peach and movie
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and movie
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and movie
The Jungle Book and movie
Anne of Green Gables and movie
Little Women and movie
Hit the library or pull a book from your bookshelf and start a cozy read-aloud.
Then once you’ve finished, grab some popcorn, get cozy, and watch a movie version of the book.
4. Field Trip
Is there a local field trip you’ve been wanting to take for a while?
February just might be the month for you to do it!
Don’t forget to check with your local public library for free and discount tickets to local attractions.
If winter weather is prohibitive, or if you don’t have the ability to travel out and about for a field trip, you might want to consider purchasing a membership to Field Trip Zoom. This is an online service that provides the opportunity for you to attend a variety of field trips virtually.
Full disclosure: I do not have a Field Trip Zoom membership, nor have I ever attended one of their virtual field trips. But I’ve heard great things about this service from fellow homeschoolers and have read many positive reviews.
How about prioritizing games this month?
My son happens to be a games-lover, through and through. He would play them for hours, all day long if he could.
My daughter, however, isn’t a big fan of games. It’s just not her thing.
So I tend to justify foregoing games since it’s not something all three of us enjoy doing.
And honestly, with various academic subjects and extracurricular activities competing for our attention, it’s easy for me to stick games at the bottom of our list.
But here’s the thing: My son and I have a blast when we spend time playing games together!
My daughter is perfectly content to do her independent school work, read, or tackle some other creative project while my son and I play.
It’s an arrangement that all three of us are happy with.
So recently, my son and I have decided to prioritize playing games.
We spend the first hour of our day playing whatever we feel like. Lately, Farkel, Aggravation, and Sorry have been our top picks.
We never finish a game without laughing!
And this laughter and our resulting good moods carry us into the rest of our homeschool day.
If you’d like some inspiration on a wide variety of games, I encourage you to listen to The Homeschool Sisters Podcast all about games!
Grab your coffee or tea and consider diving into some games first thing in the morning.
Remember, February is often a challenging month.
It is totally normal to battle the “February Blues” and to contemplate calling it quits on homeschooling
So rest assured that you’re not alone and that there are some simple things you can do to carry you through the rest of your winter homeschooling
In summary, here is your simple list of ways to bring more joy into your February homeschooling:
- List Your “February Favorites”
- Consider Outsourcing
- Book and Movie Combo
- Go on Field Trips
- Play Games
Remind yourself that February can be a challenging month for homeschoolers everywhere. Prioritize connection and remember that you are not alone.
And be sure to check out the following monthly posts to help you simplify and streamline your homeschooling all year long!
- January Homeschooling
- March Homeschooling
- April Homeschooling
- May Homeschooling
- June Homeschooling
- July Homeschooling
- August Homeschooling
- Septemeber Homeschooling
- October Homeschooling
- November Homeschooling
- December Homeschooling
I’m confident that these posts will provide you with plenty of support, motivation, and inspiration!
Great post, Sarah! I like that you give us so many ideas to incorporate into our homeschooling toolbox.
One thing I have done is to have student/teacher conferences. I sit down with my kids one on one and we go over each of their subjects: how do they like what we are using? Do we need to speed up or slow down? Do we need to change curriculum or change how we use the curriculum we have, etc.?
Doing this gives a break from our normal school routine and the kids are happy to have their thoughts and opinions heard.
Adding some extra park days also helps fight off February blues.
Sarah Takehara says
I love your student/teacher conferences, Mary! This is such a great way for you to honor each child’s feelings and opinions and reinforces your joint dedication to their education. One specific thing you discuss with your kids really stands out to me: Their thoughts on speeding up or slowing down their pace. I’m now going to incorporate this into my discussions with my children. Great tips!
Sarah, Your suggestions are inspirational and specific, and I think I can easily implement several of these ideas right away! Thanks so much!
Sarah Takehara says
I’m so glad, Sharon. You’ll have to keep me posted on what you end up implementing. You’re always bursting with great ideas!
just want to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed reading your blog and getting your newsletters. They are so uplifting and encouraging, like a virtual BFF in my inbox. I do not homeschool my kids because I am just not that great of a teacher. But we are expected to maintain their study habits at home with homework. This is where you come in, and I look to you for inspiration and encouragement to help me do the things that I am not great at doing for my own kids. Thanks so much for bringing the joy, inspiration, and sunshine into our family’s lives! It is literally snowing and so gloomy here. Lol ?
Sarah Takehara says
Diana, your comment has made my day – thank you! I’m so happy you’re able to receive encouragement from what I share. Whether or not we choose to homeschool, parenting is the most challenging job there is, don’t you think? Isn’t it validating when we can receive support and inspiration from each other? I’m hoping the sun comes out for you soon!