Keeping a Clean House While Homeschooling
Have you ever heard a stay-at-home mom say they can’t keep their home clean because they homeschool their kids?
Well, it’s officially time to bust that myth wide open.
Believe it or not, you actually can keep your home clutter-free, clean, and organized while homeschooling multiple kiddos!
With that said, there are some tips and tricks you need to know.
The Difficulties of Keeping a Clean House While Homeschooling
When I first started homeschooling my oldest through the K12 online school program I had somewhat unrealistic expectations.
I quickly began struggling with time management and keeping a clean home, and I never once stopped to ask for help.
I was used to keeping the house completely clean and put together on my own and felt like a total failure when things began to slip.
Figuring out how to balance homeschooling and household management is hard stuff, you guys!
Since I had been the primary person keeping our home clean before our homeschool journey began, I automatically fell into the trap that it should continue being my job and my job only.
After all, the only thing I needed to do was add in a few lessons, right?
Homeschooling completely consumed our lives.
While I originally thought I could homeschool my son and somehow still manage to get the laundry clean, run all my errands, and get a freshly made dinner on the table each night.
The truth is, I couldn’t
I quickly came to the realization that keeping my home clean on my own just wasn’t going to happen – like ever again!
Not only did this fill me with discouragement, but I felt like completely giving up.
This stay-at-home, homeschool mom stuff is challenging you guys.
How to Homeschool and Keep House
When it comes to homeschooling and keeping your house clean, the first thing you need to do is stop.
Stop doing all the things.
Before homeschooling, my 2 older boys attended a local private school and I only had 1 kiddo at home.
Keeping the house clean and managing an entire household on my own was pretty much a piece of cake.
However, once I added the hefty responsibility of homeschooling to my list of jobs I simply couldn’t keep up.
This is why it’s essential to have everyone on board with homeschooling and housecleaning.
7 Ways to Clean House While Homeschooling
If keeping your home clean while homeschooling your kiddos is a battle you are currently facing, getting your family involved and cleaning up throughout the day is essential.
Follow these 7 simple tips to get your house back on track while still finishing the homeschool lessons.
Assign Chores to Everyone in the Family
While confessing to my family that I could no longer do it all was quite possibly the hardest thing I ever had to do in my adult life, it was 100% necessary.
In order to keep a clean and functioning household while homeschooling, everyone needs to do their share when it comes to household responsibilities.
With that said, if you truly want a clean house while homeschooling, you also need some type of functional system!
First, write out a simple list of household tasks that need to be completed daily, weekly, and monthly.
Take your time and be exact because the first step to a clean house is knowing what needs to be accomplished.
Next, simply delegate.
Break down the list and begin assigning jobs to different members of your family.
The key here is to share the wealth and the responsibility.
The wealth is a clean house and the responsibilities are the chores needed to get there!
Do whatever you need to do to make this work.
Create a chore chart, set timers, or plan cleaning bursts at specific times.
Schedule Chores Throughout the Homeschool Day
Yes, yes, yes!
If we didn’t schedule chores throughout our homeschool day, I’m pretty positive I would never experience a clean house again.
Before I became a homeschool mom, I was simply a stay-at-home mom with 2 kids in regular school and a toddler at home.
My house was pretty much immaculate!
The beds were made, the laundry was done, and dinner was on the table.
Of course, I had off days, and kids would get sick, so it wasn’t perfect by any means.
However, it was consistently clean.
Once homeschooling entered the picture, the house quickly became consistently not-so-clean.
Being a super organized, neat freak of a mom, I was not liking this new atmosphere that I had been thrown into.
I tried really hard to keep up with everything and found myself running around the house like a crazy person.
You know? It didn’t even matter.
The house was still a mess at the end of the day and I was exhausted!
Something had to give.
I was stuck believing school was the kids’ job, my husband had a real job, and the house was my job.
Once I changed my way of thinking, everything changed.
Bringing the kids home to learn meant cleaning the house needed to become a family affair.
We schedule our chores during homeschool time in little bursts.
This seriously makes all the difference when it comes to keeping a clean house while homeschooling.
Clean up After Each Individual Task
This might actually be the most important tip of them all!
Ready for a game changer when it comes to keeping your home clean during the homeschool day?
Clean up after yourself and encourage your kids to do the same!
While it may sound like a no-brainer, this can actually be more of a challenge than you might think.
With that said, this simple concept should apply to every area of your life, not just homeschooling, if you are serious about keeping a clean home.
It can be incredibly tempting to finish up a subject and then begin pulling things out for the next activity without putting everything back in its exact and proper place.
However, this step is essential!
In our home, I have a couple of kiddos who struggle with this concept which means they need constant reminders to put their things away before starting on their next subject.
While it takes some extra effort on my part, I am incredibly thankful when I don’t give in.
Those little reminders, while annoying, mean our house is mostly clutter-free at the end of our homeschool day.
Get Rid of Catch-All Stations
To piggyback off my last tip, this one is a must, you guys!
Part of cleaning up in between tasks means ditching the catch-all stations in your home.
You know the ones. The areas where things just seem to land throughout the day.
We actually have a couple of these in our home.
I have no idea how this even happens.
Ultimately, my kids are somehow getting distracted and dropping things off here instead of heading all the way downstairs to put something away.
This was a habit we absolutely had to break.
Much like encouraging your kiddos to clean up in between tasks, you may also need to remind them that the art of cleaning up means doing it properly.
Take a stand and ditch all the catch-all stations in your home.
Do whatever is needed to make sure everyone is on board with breaking the habit of things landing on the kitchen counter, stairwell, or junk drawer.
Utilize a reward system, hand out consequences, or simply lean on constant reminders.
Put Everything in it’s Place the Night Before
This one is so important, you guys!
If the house is a total mess when you go to sleep on a Tuesday evening, guess what?
It’s going to be that same awful mess on Wednesday morning when you’re starting your morning lessons.
Crazy concept, I know!
Pay very close attention to this little secret I’m about to share with you.
Don’t ever, ever go to sleep with a messy house. Period.
If you do a quick run-through and tidy up your house before you settle in for the night, you will be incredibly pleased with the results when you wake up.
Not only will your morning run smoother homeschool-wise, but you can also dive right into your bible time or morning basket without a second thought.
With that said, you can easily incorporate your final evening walk-through into your family chore chart.
Simply assign an area of the house to each family member for a quick tidying before retiring to their bed for the evening.
For example, in our home, one child is in charge of making sure the living room is in order, while another checks the entryway.
I typically do a run-through of the kitchen and bathrooms.
This seriously takes little to no extra time out of our evening and I tell you what, it’s totally worth it in the morning!
Imagine taking 2 minutes out of your evening to clear and wipe the kitchen counter and waking up to a tidy home VS skipping that tiny task and having to clean up before coffee.
Trust me on this one.
On the rare occasion we do skip this part of our day it is always, always regretted the following morning!
Use Weekends for Rest & Catch up Too
For most American families the weekend is set aside for sporting events and grocery shopping, which for some unknown reason can wreak total havoc on a house!
I know, because we’ve been there too.
While we don’t partake in weekend sporting events anymore, our weekend can still slip away in what seems like a matter of hours if we let it.
Crazy how that works right?
The weekdays can drag on, but the weekend seems to blow right by!
With that said, if you still find yourself struggling to keep a clean home while homeschooling during the school week, clearing your weekend schedule for housework and rest might just be your only option.
Busy schedules are overrated and in my humble opinion, having a functioning home is much more important than sporting events and laziness.
In our home, weekends are now set aside for rest, family time, and catching up.
Making simple swaps will enable you to have a smoother Monday morning.
Consider dropping time-consuming organized sports that take up your whole Saturday and opt for a 2-hour family picnic at the park instead.
Skip the hectic and put your time where it matters most.
Follow Through and Stay Consistent
Starting a new system that allows you to get your house clean is great, but keeping it clean can be difficult.
Sometimes the dedication and motivation you have in the beginning tapers off and the system begins to crumble
Be persistent and consistent.
While we all have days we fall behind, sticking with your plan and following through on a regular (daily) basis is essential.
Then, when the unexpected happens and you do fall off the bandwagon, simply get back on as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Putting things off and saying you will get to it later only prolongs the issue.
You’ve totally got this, mama!
Clean House While Homeschooling
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