My husband has always been a very involved father. He was at the hospital in the delivery room with each one of our kids. He stayed at the hospital every night with our oldest, who spent 5 days in the NICU. He took off days to stay home with our children when I had the other babies. He changes diapers, cleans up messes that make me gag and more – without being asked.
But, when we began homeschooling nearly 8 years ago, my husband worked the overnight shift, which meant I was pretty much on my own. I made sure to get all our schoolwork and housework done while he was sleeping, so we could spend the few hours at night he had together as a family. It wasn’t an easy schedule, but we made it work.
When he started his first full-time ministry position it was quite the adjustment. He had worked the overnight shift for most of the previous 7 years and we had grown accustomed to his strange schedule. Now that he was home more, I wasn’t sure “what to do with him”. Of course we were excited to have him home more and available, but where did he fit?
As I was praying about our upcoming school year, it dawned on me that I could involve in more in our homeschool. He had always helped or approved the curriculum I chose, but otherwise he was just my supporter, not really an active member because of his schedule.
However, bringing your husband in to your homeschool can be tough for some women. I know it was for me, at least at first. I like to be in control, so relinquishing any control or giving up a subject made me feel like a failure. But, God quickly reassured me that was not the case. I was not a failure, but I was convicted.
God created marriage to be an equal partnership. Men and women are created differently, but we each have a role in the home and marriage. Even though the husband is the head of the household, the wife is the head of the home. Anytime we didn’t finish all our schoolwork or we fell behind, I felt like a complete failure.
That’s when my prayers changed. I started asking God to guide me in ways my husband could be more involved in our homeschool, rather than giving me more strength to get it all done. Truth be told…I wasn’t ever going to get it all done. There simply weren’t enough hours in the day. Between working nearly full-time on blogging, homeschooling 4 kids, caring for an infant and maintaining the home, I just couldn’t do it. Something had to give.
That’s when God revealed to me the many different ways my husband could be involved in our homeschool. These are just five ways we have found that work for us, they are not the only ways a husband can become involved. I suggest spending time in prayer and talking with your husband to find ways that best fit your family.
5 Ways to Involve Your Husband in Your Homeschool
Prayer & Bible Time – As the head of your household, he should be leading you in prayer and Bible studies already. So, why not combine them in to your homeschool time. We always did ours at dinner or bedtime, because he often had appointments at the church in the mornings. Now that he is home full-time and we travel, he does this in the morning.
Teach a subject he enjoys – My husband loves Science and History, which just so happen to be two subjects I do not like. I find them interesting, but I do not remember or recall things like he does. He loves bringing history to life with them as we travel and see new sites. When they take hikes, he is a wealth of information about the plants, animals and more they come across. Allowing him to teach these two subjects has released so much stress from me and the kids love being with Dad, so it’s a win-win.
What if your husband isn’t good at any core subject? Have no fear! He is great at something, so let him teach that! It could be cooking, woodworking, drawing, music or sports (aka gym). Find something he is passionate about and let him teach that to the kids.
Grading papers – Maybe your husband isn’t as available. Don’t worry, he can still be involved. If he is willing, he could help you grade papers. There are math papers, handwriting and spelling papers to name a few. This is a great way for him to not only get involved, but to see how the children are doing.
Reviewing papers – Some husband’s are not keen on grading papers, which is okay. Kids always want to share their papers and accomplishments with Dad when he gets home. Have them keep their completed and graded papers in a single location, that Dad can see and easily access when he gets home and settled. This way they don’t bombard him the minute he walks in the door.
Field Trips – If your husband has a flexible schedule, try to plan field trips on a day he can join you. During his full-time ministries, my husband most often had Friday’s off, so we tried plan field trips accordingly. Field trips are not only a great way to for hands-on learning, but a great way to spend time together as a family.
Bringing my husband in to our homeschool was the best decision I ever made. With the Lord’s guidance and my husband’s input we found several areas he could be involved, without overwhelming him.
Now that we travel full-time and my blogging is what provides for our family, he does much more of the homeschooling. I help with a few of the subjects, like reading/phonics on some days and facilitating math most days, but otherwise, he takes care of it while I work. This allows us to spend more time together as a family, because I can work while they do school.
This is what works for our family and is by no means a standard you must follow. Some husband’s may be reluctant at first, in which case I recommend you continue to pray and ask the Lord to open his heart and give him a desire to be involved. Some just need a little guidance in where they can best serve or be used. Remember, they are not home with you all day, so give them time to find their way.
Is your husband involved in your homeschool? I would love to hear!