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“We homeschool for the flexibility.”

Oh, how often have I heard or said that phrase? The freedom of planning, scheduling, and schooling on our own timetable is priceless. For years, we schooled on a non-traditional calendar year schedule; it worked for us.

It is nice to take vacations during the off-season. It is nice to take a big break at Christmastime instead of in the summer. It is nice to take a day to help a family in need, babysit at a moment’s notice, or be available to support ailing family members.

My favorite is taking a trip to the zoo on that surprise 60-degree day in January when no one else is there.


All of these things are great!

The trouble is when flexibility becomes a liability.

Flexibility is a liability when it’s Wednesday and “we’ll start next week, it’s too late this week to get started.” Or “We’ll just call this a break week.” Or school falls on the back burner more than it doesn’t.

When taken advantage of, any good thing can become harmful. Homeschool Flexibility can become an idol. It can cause guilt and frustration. It can cause fights and arguments with your children, who are simply confused. It can break their trust in you. It can be educational neglect.


The thing is, flexibility is great, but it’s consistency that gives flexibility its true value.

When you’re regularly prioritizing lessons and moving forward step-by-step, when you’re being diligent and faithful, you can truly be flexible. Like your muscles, they’re a lot stronger when they’re exercised. They can do more things for you. If you stretch and pull the weight all the time, time off will not hurt, and habits can be easier to regain.

In my experience, I felt less guilt about taking off for an emergency once I became consistent than when I took off for that same emergency when we were inconsistent. I knew it was an aberration to our schedule and that we would be able to return to our routine.

My kids began to trust me when I said it would be a school day tomorrow; they couldn’t always do that. Once I changed my thinking and attitudes about “We homeschool for the flexibility” and established consistent, every-planned day schooling, everyone was much happier, and the learning moved on apace.

Even if the kids had sick days, I didn’t worry as much about trying to “make it up” later. When we had been consistent, when the expectation and experience was that we did school on school days, those sick days didn’t hurt the progress we had been making. We were able to resume where we had left off and take the next break as intended, and it was fine.

We homeschool consistently, so we can be flexible.


Want to have a genuinely flexible homeschool? Join us in the Homeschool Consistency Bootcamp, where we teach you the tools that helped me get my homeschool on track!

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