Homeschool distractions that are costing you big time
Teacher Support

7 Distractions That Are Killing Your Homeschool Schedule


How to create a homeschool schedule that is free of distractions, and encourages learning. 

Whether you have a designated classroom, or your kids are doing their school work at the dining room table, there are always ways to cut clutter and be more present for your kids homeschooling hours. 

Don’t get me wrong, being a hot mess is kind of like my life right now. But there are a few ways that I am slowly clearing up the excess and giving back to my family.

Here are a few ways that I am personally working on being MORE present and LESS frazzled. 

Starting on this homeschool teacher adventure means that I’m giving my kids the best education. And if that means reshaping myself into the teacher they need, then so be it. 

So I give you 7 ways to be less of a hot-mess homeschool teacher – coming from an actual hot mess mom.

By eliminating just a few habits that are ruining your homeschool schedule, you will begin seeing just much you don’t miss that wasted time! Instead, you are going to feel more centered. More involved. And like a homeschooling ninja that you are on the inside!

Grab yourself a few handfuls of chocolate and read on!

Stop making social media so accessible because it’s killing your homeschool routine!!

#1 – Delete social media

I stopped using social media, and I’m a better mom because of it. When you stop comparing or feeling the need to post something your life becomes simple.

Today for example, I took Facebook’s app off my phone. It’s not even 10:00 and I’ve noticed I’ve gone to reach for my phone and scroll through Facebook at least 12 times.

That’s 12 times in a matter of 3 hours. I am shocked.

And you know what? That is 12 times I was trying to mentally check out. Yeah my life is stressful.

There are times where I just want to do a mind-numbing task. But you know what? It’s become so habitual that it’s not about decompressing anymore. It’s really become an addiction. And I don’t ever want to be addicted to social media because it can be very detrimental.

I’m a very tender soul. I don’t like commenting on stuff. I don’t like being involved in conflict or tense situations. Almost all of my social media interactions are pretty one sided.

While I certainly think there is a time and a place for social media and posting, heck even this page has a Facebook group, I think it’s worth noting however that you need to take inventory of how much time you’re giving away. You were given 100 pennies. How would you feel about spending 25 of those on nothing? It’s essentially like throwing them away or giving them to someone else.

Entertainment is a big part of life, but entertainment isn’t life.

12 examples of when I reached for my phone:

  1. When I first got up to wake up slowly
  2. Waiting for my coffee to brew
  3. While drinking coffee
  4. At breakfast
  5. During writing and journaling time in our homeschool schedule
  6. During the independent work time after math class 
  7. While the baby was nursing
  8. While I was waiting for the bason to cook for BLT’s
  9. During my bathroom break
  10. At morning snack time
  11. In between classes of our homeschool day
  12. My midmorning scroll time while decompressing

Here are some ways to take inventory of how much time you’re giving away to social media’s mindless scrolling. 

  1. Remove all social media apps off your phone for 24 hours and tally up how many times you reached for the app. You can do this in your mind or on physical paper.
  2. Every time you open a social media app do five squats or push-ups or leg raises or an exercise of any kind. Not only will you see how many times you’re opening the app, but you’re doing positive reinforcement by changing your body a little bit at a time. Watch those results pile up.

#2 – Leave e-groups

Skip the Facebook groups. Stop posting your latest hacks. Because the more you post, the more you feel the need to. And instead of living your life in the present, you are gonna start doing stuff to post for glory.

Let me tell you a little story of why I stopped joining and have left a lot of Facebook groups.

Once upon a Time a homeschool mom devoted three weeks to writing an eBook. She spent time adding in graphics charts and printable pages. She used the years of experience growing up being a homeschooler and asked questions from her mom to homeschooled eight children. After lovingly packing 78 pages full of knowledge that she has gained in an entire lifetime she decided to put this product on her website to share with the world. Yes she was asking to exchange money for her experience. Not a lot. You would spend the same amount going out to eat once. Or buying a new pair of cheap shoes. But to her it was affordable enough to wear anyone *could* afford it, but it was not so cheap that somebody would buy it and then just leave it as one of the books they never read. You see, part of putting things for sale is trying to find that sweet spot between people finding enough value in your work, but also finding it to be budget friendly. After all this work she wanted to share it with a few people. So she gave her product out for free to get some reviews, have people critique her work, look for typos and all that. Well instead of finding the value in her work there was always One bad Apple that tried to ruin the bunch. This bad apple decided that because the product was given to her for free that she should have the right to share it for free with the world. So this bad apple took the product and started sharing it on social media. This bad apple had no consideration for the time and years spent crafting this product. The information may sound simple once you have it, but for those who are new this is information that is valuable. Oftentimes we don’t know what we don’t know.

So why does all of this matter?

What does all this have to do with Facebook groups?

You see Facebook groups can give you a wealth of knowledge but then you also have the few who want and seek out strife and division. And one of the things I don’t have time for as a homeschooling mom is more strife and division. I’ve left a lot of Facebook groups whether it was for homeschooling or my love and passion for gardening.

Because I don’t want to go to Facebook to see more fighting and more division and more people trying to take advantage of others’ hard work.

To keep my own mental sanity levels I’ve left Facebook groups. If you’ve noticed we have a Facebook page where we post resources. It’s not a discussion group. There’s minimal commenting and minimal interaction. And that’s okay. In fact that’s how I would prefer it.

Because the people who truly need the information are going to find it whether they are going to Google it or find it in groups and do it as I am a passive reader. But the people who are out to call strife are going to do that whether it’s on a Facebook group or commenting or whatever. So make your life a little easier and leave the groups.

Seriously, whoever said homeschoolers are unsocialized has clearly no idea how much time is wasted on arguing or trying to defend yourself to others. The world is hard enough. So why do we have to make food plans for dealing with others during every second of the day? 

Free doesn’t mean you have to get it and save it for later. Sometimes that is fine, but sometimes it’s hindering you more to keep it.

#3 – Stop hoarding and collecting all the freebies

On the token of getting stuff for free I do want to say just because it’s free doesn’t mean you need it. There I said it. And this is something I’m trying to live by.

You know how at the beginning of the school year or heck at the beginning of the new year we set goals for the year? Well how about the beginning of the school year start making New Year resolutions? And one of those things that I plan to do is to stop gathering all the free stuff just because it’s free. Because you see, as I mentioned before, if something is free you don’t always see it as valuable.

That’s not to say it does not have value. It just does not have enough value to you all the time.

Because how many free downloadable things have you subscribed to newsletters to get?

Only to not use. How many folders do you have on your computer or downloads taking up space on your phone? I can tell you I have over 100 freebies in my email right now that I’m never going to use.

I have eBooks and laugh books that are for specific unit studies that I’m never going to remember to print off and do. so in an effort to clean up my life I am not going to opt in to freebies anymore. Which is another reason you’ll see on our homepage we don’t have a newsletter.

This is something I have contemplated for a long time. But honestly I’m a busy mom and I just don’t have time to sit down and write newsletters. And I just feel like a lot of people don’t actually read stuff from their emails anymore.

Why waste my time?

Instead on our homepage you can get a free homeschooling checklist download. It’s literally an instant download that you can print and keep using. So make sure you go over there and check it out.

If you do need to download freebies or want to organize the ones you currently have here are some tips

  1. Print it off as soon as you download.
  2. Delete it once your done. It’ll save storage space.
  3. Schedule or plan your holiday, themed freebies as reminders. Holiday dates don’t change, so plan around it!
  4. Read more tips in this article I wrote just to help you out!
It’s been proven that reading to your kids is the BEST way to encourage learning. READ. READ. READ! To them. Around them. Just READ!

#4 – Read more 

So this is more of a what to do more, rather than less of. I included this because I don’t want you to feel restricted and become resentful of this list. To the point where you don’t even try to do one of them because it just seems like you’re giving up so much. So instead I want to include some positives for you to start doing because you’ve got all that extra time since you cut out mindless reading on social media.

Model a passion for reading by starting with yourself. So many times we as adults say we wish we had more time for reading. But I’d like to challenge you to take social media apps off your phone game. e for just one day. You’ll see how many times you reach for those apps in a day.

I can guarantee you it’s eating up more than 15 minutes of your day. 15 minutes where you say you wish you had 15 minutes to read and be still and quiet. 

#5 – Unsubscribe

Take 5 minutes a day to unsubscribe to all those newsletters you never read, but are cluttering up your inbox, making you feel behind. I gotta tell ya, it kinda makes me cringe when my inbox has 1,057 new messages. I know I can’t stop reading them all. So I just let them accumulate.

Then I feel unorganized, behind and like I am off my game. So what’s the fix? Unsubscribe. If you don’t love it so much that you are looking for those newsletter messages or ideas, if it’s something that you would throw away if it came in your physical mailbox, then unsubscribe. Because too much information is never helpful.

#6 – Stop using a planner

Better said, stop OVER-using a planner.

I know for some people this is going to seem counterproductive. But it’s actually worth considering. Just to give you some perspective here’s an article on How Much Time You’ll Spend in your Lifetime on Certain Activities.

Before I go any further I have to put my disclaimer in. Yes I know that when you plan for nothing then you are not reaching goals. And goals in life are essential to making progress.

Here’s what I want you to take away though spending so much time planning that you don’t make room for life to happen is going to set yourself up for frustration.

It can be so easy to sit down on your Sunday afternoon with your afternoon tea, and plan your upcoming week. But by midday on Tuesday you realize you haven’t gotten anything accomplished on your checklist from Monday and it doesn’t look like you’ll be able to do much for tuesday. So you start feeling overwhelmed. Out of control. And like you’re failing. And it all stemmed from planning your day out TOO much. 

How do you balance a planner that helps but doesn’t hinder?

Here are some ideas for you to either ditch it completely or scale it back. Remember your planner needs to work for you. It does not need to be the other way around. Your planner is not your boss or master. 

  1. Only plan to do two to three things a day outside of your normal routine
  2. Set one or two monthly goals
  3. Set one or two weekly goals

#7 Stop multi-tasking

Whether you believe it or not, your multitasking obsession is actually hindering your performance.

You know how you’re always feeling overwhelmed? You know how you’re always feeling scatterbrained? You know how it always seems like you’re following behind? Well it’s because you’re trying to multitask and do it all. In an effort to make sure everything runs smoothly you are actually sabotaging yourself.

Because your attention is divided on so many different things you are giving only a percentage of your attention, and you are not completing jobs at 100%. Each generation has been bashing the next saying they are not working, and lazy which makes the few of us who are not like that up our game wanting to prove them wrong and show them we are different. Whether you work inside the home or outside the home.

Whether you stay home. Or a teacher or whatever your role. You’re always going to feel like you need to prove yourself and your worth. Which means you take on more than you should.

You might like this related article: How to Combat Angry Mom Guilt and Reclaim Your Classroom

If you made it to the end of this article, and managed to actually read it rather than just skip over and only read the headlines. Then I’m proud of you! Because you took the time to slow down and invest in yourself. And that’s hard to do. So give yourself a little pat on the back from me. 

If you really like this article and you feel like it’s something you should share with other mamas please do! Because you never know who needs a little bit of direction to change their routine everyday. After all, if you want to change your life you should do something every day. 


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