I’ll start off by saying that the social media homeschooling community is outstanding!
The homeschooling community on social media is outstanding. They remind me of the supportive breastfeeding online communities that I use to turn to in my early days of motherhood. Most homeschooling parents on social media will go above and beyond to offer advice and encouragement. They’re always eager to share their favorite resources, book recommendations, and activity ideas. I probably would have given up on homeschooling long ago if it wasn’t for them. However, my numerous social media breaks have taught me that social media can be damaging to homeschooling.
5 Reasons Why Social Media Can Be Damaging to Homeschooling
1.You may begin comparing another child’s success to your child.
People enjoy sharing their child’s accomplishments, including myself. Parents should be proud of their children. Yet, parents on the other side of the screen may start to question why their child is not achieving the same goal yet. We have to remind ourselves that every child is unique. Children follow their own timelines. There is a prophetic saying in Islamic tradition that says, “None of you will believe until you love for your brother what you love for yourself.” (Related by Bukhari & Muslim). I try to remind myself of this whenever I begin to feel this way. The beauty of homeschooling is that you don’t have to be a part of the rat race. You can tailor your child’s education to their own pace.
2.Social Media images often show an unrealistic view of homeschooling.
You’ll start scrolling social media and notice a mother that’s baking bread. In her post caption she will say that she just returned home after spending her day in the forest. She’ll continue speaking about her lovely experience reading poetry in nature and how her child named all of the birds. While this is lovely, it’s not always realistic. People rarely share the tantrums, the failed attempts to get them to focus on the read-aloud, or their insecurities. We have to remember that Instagram is not reality; embrace your authenticity.
3.Social media may influence you to shop impulsively and break your budget.
Many of us buy curriculum, games, planners, and books because of the trends in the social media online communities. Many of these items just take up space in our homeschool because they never worked out. That’s money we could have spent on field trips instead. I admit that I’ve even bought certain items because I thought it would make an interesting post. Why do we need to prove ourselves to strangers on the internet? We don’t need all of the stuff to homeschool well. Remember, many influencers get paid to promote products. Usually, they are promoting products for free, at a discounted price, or for commission.
4.You’ll start feeling like you are not doing enough and doubt yourself.
Facebook groups are notorious for making me feel like I am not doing enough. For example, a mom posts a question about her daily schedule and shows she completes five subjects a day. Suddenly, a mother who thinks she is doing well starts questioning whether or not she should be doing more. Remember that everyone is at a different phase in their life; learning looks different for everyone.
5. Social media is wasting your time.
Many of us spend hours watching or reading about curriculum reviews, searching hashtags about books, or scrolling through our social media feed. While research is essential, many of us don’t know how to manage our time. Working on becoming present and scheduling your social media time is helpful.
I’m not saying social media is evil or that you should deactivate your account. We need to learn to balance our time. It’s important to evaluate our intention. Get inspired, purchase items that may be helpful, but be realistic. Embrace your journey. It goes by fast.