Christine A Howard

Getting It All In When You Have A Special Needs Homeschool

Time is a very precious commodity for all families, but for special needs families it is gold.  If you also homeschool, time can seem like a myth.  With appointments, therapies, and time taken for the extra needs of our kiddos, how does a family fit learning into the mix?  Honestly?  With great difficulty at times.  There are ways to make sure that you are hitting all of the milestones each school year even while taking care of the special needs of your family.  Getting it all in when you have a special needs homeschool is doable.  Here are a few things we do…

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learning on the go

Learn On The Go

We have countless appointments to get to each month.  For a lot of our appointments, we travel about an hour and a half away.  On these days, we typically load the day with as many doctors and therapists as we can.  In order to make these days as productive as possible, we road school.

We bought our kids each a travel desk that acts like a briefcase as well.  We load up the things we need to cover, and we school on the road and in between appointments.  Its not ideal, but it works.  We have used audio books such as Wulf the Saxxon from Heirloom Audio to make school in the car much more enjoyable.

If we have tons of appointments all in one day, we may bring learning games and call it good.  By being flexible with what we call “school,” it becomes so much easier to squeeze learning into days like these.

School Can Be Anywhere

We do not view school as books, tests and notes.  Instead, we view school as the grocery store, the vet clinic, the park, 4-H, Boy Scouts and tons of other outside-the-house locations.  If you think about it, school can be anywhere your child is actively learning.  We do grocery shopping math on a regular basis, and my kids are getting so much better at rounding, doing math in your mind, and budgeting.  These are all things they will need as adults, as well as solid math concepts required in school.

grocery shopping math

Once you are able to think outside-the-box about what school really is, it becomes so much easier to make sure your children are “attending to school” each day.  The beauty of homeschooling is that you as the parent can decide just how the necessary learning concepts are presented.  Be creative and use what you have around you to provide the best school you can for your kids.

School All Year Long

In the state where I live, we have to provide 860 hours of school to our kids each year.  We get to choose just how we divide this up over the year.  That means that if we school all year long, we only have to do school for 16.5 hours per week.  This equates to just over 3 hours each day.  That becomes a whole lot more doable if you are busy with doctors, therapists and phone calls with insurance companies, right?

autism sites

If you are struggling with how to fit school in around all of your other obligations, I highly encourage you to school year round.  If you have a great day and can work for 5 hours, you now have a cushion for days you can’t do school at all.  Just an average of 3 hours per day is all you might need.

If you are struggling to find ways to get it all in when you have a special needs homeschool, try these things to make life easier.  If you would like some more ideas on how to get all you can into your day, why not check out the Review Crew.  To do so, simply click the link below.

Here are a few of the other blogs participating in the 5 Days of Homeschool Encouragement this year!

Jennifer @ Dear Homeschooler
Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory
Karen @ Tots and Me…Growing Up Together
Kelly @ Hope in the Chaos
Kellyann @ Walking Home …
Kimberley @ Vintage Blue Suitcase
Kristen @ A Mom’s Quest to Teach
Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
Laura @ Four Little Penguins
Linda @ Apron Strings & other things


Getting It All In When You Have A Special Needs Homeschool


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