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So maybe you aren’t going to see the seven little dwarfs marching through your house; however, some of us find it possible to yes – work while we homeschool!
Homeschool While I Work? You’ve Got to Be Kidding!
No, I’m not! It’s possible, if you are committed to making it work, it can work.
All the years I homeschooled, I worked. I didn’t have a choice. We needed the income to live in the area we chose to homeschool, in the community we felt was best for our child and to be able to provide her with the opportunities we wanted to provide her with.
Yes, I know, before you roll your eyes…. I know what you are thinking…. Eva you had one child and she was easy. Let me begin to tell you she wasn’t. Yes, she was a passionate learner; however, she never, EVER stopped doing things. NEVER. EVER.
But – I am here to say – that if you have one child or five children you CAN make this work. And in today’s world it is so much easier than it was 5 years ago, 10 years ago and 15 years ago.
First of all, as a homeschooling family, you know you shouldn’t think “traditional”. You are going to have to “reinvent” yourself. There are so many things that you can do from home that will bring in the funds to help you stay home. Although I worked for an MLM (Usborne Books) for over 15 years, that isn’t even on the list.
Aside from MLMs, there are so many opportunities that you have that can provide extra money:
- Give lessons to homeschoolers from your house
- Teach a class at the local community center
- Tutor homeschooling students or public-school students
- Give homeschooling moms a “day off” by offering drop off services at your house once a week
- Have a home day care
- Provide social media/ marketing services
- Get a call center/customer service position
- Data Entry
- Work for an online teaching English as a Second Language (often to Chinese Students) job via VIPKids, Say ABC, Tutor ABC, QKids, Cambly and more…
- Drive for Uber or Lyft
- Do online work for any homeschooling organization
- Sell lesson plans on TeachersPayTeachers
- Be a homeschooling coach
- Be a business coach
- Be a marketing coach
It’s all about what you are comfortable with and what your family dynamic is. What can you do that causes the LEAST amount of disruption in your family routine? One challenge I give to moms facing this dilemma is to make a list of twenty-five things that they know how to do and can make money from. Then, I ask them which they can get going with in the next twenty-four hours and that is where they should begin.
So, you are thinking, how is this going to work? Here are some ideas to think about…
Working opposite schedules
If your spouse is flexible in this area, use it to your advantage. Yes, it will take work to get them to understand things; however, it will help you to understand more of what your family needs.
Turning your kids into independent learners
Make a list. Give them tasks you know they can handle. Build this up slowly. Take advantage of older kids to help the younger kids. Expect them to take some responsibility.
Ask for help
If you have a retired family member – a grandparents – an aunt/uncle – a family friend – a neighbor – use them! Some people will use a sitter or have an au-pair. Others will have older teenagers in the house to help hold down the fort when you disappear into your home office to work.
Co-ops and drop off programs
If you have one in your area, consider this as an option. Yes, it is an expense; however, this will provide you the time you might need. Do a cost analysis.
Get your family on the same page
Everyone in the house needs to know who, what, when, where, why, how and how much no matter what working option you choose. When your family knows exactly what to do – it will become a routine.
Yes, you might have some stressful moments…. But, in the end the benefits outweigh the disadvantages. Your children will see you setting a positive example. Your children will gain independence. Your children will thrive. Just remember, think outside the box and anything is possible in today’s world.
Eva Goldstein-Meola is not only co-founder of Open Tent Academy, but an instructor as well as a former homeschooling mother. She has lived in New Jersey, Florida, Western Massachusetts, Northern Virginia and now resides just outside of Jerusalem. Eva holds a Master’s Degree as a Consulting Teacher of Reading and Writing, IEW certification and a Bachelor’s Degree as an Elementary Teacher. She has also been involved in education since 1986 as a Private Tutor, Teacher, Reading Specialist, Homeschooling Mother, Homeschooling Teacher and Business Owner of an Online Education Consortium.