I have officially been homeschooling my autistic son for one week and two days.
Or should I say “I survived my first week of homeschooling”?
It was not too bad actually. I did not put a lot of pressure on myself or my son.
I wish I could say that I had this amazing fail-proof plan, perfect schedule, beautiful homeschool room.
The truth is I ordered my son’s curriculum later than I should have and didn’t get everything in time.
I had a rough schedule planned because we have way too many doctors, therapists appointments, plus 2 other kids with their own schedules.
And we are still living in my parents home so I use a dining table, not a special room.
So needless to say it was not a picture perfect first week of homeschooling.
I want you to know that if you’re considering homeschooling your autistic child, you can do it! It may not be perfect and it won’t be like anyone elses experience I can guarantee it. But you can do it!
This is what I learned during my first week of homeschooling my autistic son.
1. I’m not sure what exactly I’m doing
I know that homeschooling is what I need to be doing. It is what’s best for my son now. We will both be learning this year.
2. It takes time to get used to being a teacher and student, and mom and son
This is something we will definitely be working on. It will take time to establish boundaries and create an understanding of when I’m just mom or when I’m the teacher.
3. We can take as many breaks as we need
One of my favorite things about homeschooling. If your child is overwhelmed, they take a break. You finished a lesson, they take a break. You need to load the washing machine, they take a break.
4. We can go over the difficult things as many times as we want
Oh, how I love this. You don’t just let your child get by. You can over the same subjects if you need to!
5. My son can learn everyday life skills because now he has the time!
Our lives have been so busy with school all day and ABA or other therapies after school and into the evening. Now we can make breakfast and lunch together. I can teach him life skills!
6. A short and flexible schedule means we can have school when we have time
Some days are not exactly as we planned. That’s ok. We take a break and finish school in the afternoon.
7. There still doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day for everything
I definitely think we have more time now because I don’t have to drive to school or pick up C up, but it still doesn’t seem like enough.
8. You can plan all you want but things will still evolve and change. One schedule now doesn’t mean it will actually stay the schedule later.
This second week of homeschooling I have created a pretty good schedule. Now I have to wait and see if it’s a schedule C can handle.
As parents of autistic children, we constantly watch them and study them to know what is best for them. I’m getting to know my son very much now. And I know that our schedule will need to change to help him succeed in homeschooling.
9. Starting homeschooling and buying a home at the same time is very stressful
If you subscribe to my emails you know we are in the process of buying a home. It is a long process and quite stressful. And starting my first year homeschooling at the same time a perfect recipe for…more stress!
10. Everything school related can fit into a small storage box (for now)
I kept pinning these amazing and beautiful ways to organize your homeschool room or just all the things. Well, I’m here into our second week and everything seems to fit just fine into a small storage box. But trust me once we move I will create that super cute and organized space.
11. Having the middle kid in school for half a day helps
I chose to send my 4-year-old T to public school for TK. And he is in school for 1/2 the day. It’s a big help so I can give C full attention. Even if it is just for 2 hours.
12. Naps for the baby are a lifesaver
Having a toddler that still naps is amazing!
I don’t know how mom’s do it with everyone awake and present at the same time. I’m sure I will learn once the time comes.
13. We actually have time for sports so now we just have to find one
Now that we have more time for living our life we get to choose a sport to play!! This was never an option for C before.
14. Transitioning from regular school to homeschool is hard on the kids as well as the parents.
Even though I know that homeschooling is what is best for C and it is what God wants me to do, it has been a tough transition for both of us. And I’m sure it will continue to be as we learn our new normal.
But I know I can do it.
I know YOU can do it.
You got this mama!
What are some lessons that you’ve learned so far?