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Why Interruptions to Homeschooling Are Good

Homeschool parents sometimes bemoan the many, small interruptions into their homeschool day and/or week. But these interruptions can be a very good thing. Although there are times for peace and quiet to do schoolwork, interruptions actually force children to learn to wait and be flexible.

I first discovered how important interruptions were when my small homeschool class of four children was interrupted by an unexpected visitor. The class wasn't used to knowing how to behave without me there. Learning to wait quietly, and without getting in trouble, is a necessary skill and one that needs constant practice. I began walking out the room for a few minutes at a time to teach my class to sit and wait in case another unexpected interruption happened. I talked openly to them about the trouble that can happen when they are without a teacher or parent present and to be conscience of their actions when no adults are around.

Additionally without interruptions, students can be trained to only be able to work when things are quiet. I discovered this, too, the hard way. I had trained my daughter to sit quietly and work at the kitchen table, but she became unable to concentrate with the smallest noises or movement around her. I knew this was an unhealthy and unrealistic approach to her task, because no matter what she did as an adult, there would be others around, and she could not demand complete stillness and quiet in order to be productive. I purposefully began doing dishes or chatting on the phone in an adjoining room so that she would learn to tune out another busy person around her.

So I have learned to see interruptions as welcome guests. They teach children to behave and be flexible in life. Teaching your children to learn to handle interruptions is a necessary skill for peace and for life.

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