Crappy Pictures About Homeschooling

It’s back-to-school time! I love this time of year, but not for the reasons you might expect. The truth is, we homeschool. There is no “back to school” for us. However, as a homeschooling parent, there are reasons I love this time of year.

Supplies (on clearance!)

Back-to-school supplies - Crappy Pictures

I’m still lured by the colorful displays of markers and little bottles of glue. They make my heart skip a beat and I just want to pet the displays. They call to me from the shelves this time of year and if I’m not careful I’ll wind up stockpiling giant packs of markers with 6,000 colors. (For me, not for the kids. Shhh!). While we do usually need some supplies for our home, we don’t need anything by a specific date. This means I can wait until a couple weeks after school starts when everything hits the clearance racks.

Empty parks

Back-to-school parks - Crappy Pictures

In summer the parks and beaches are packed. It is pure chaos. It is tons of fun of course, but after a summer of exhausting park outings I look forward to back-to-school time. Suddenly, the parks and beaches quiet down. There is room on the swings! Nobody gets knocked down! I get a relaxing break and we often run into other homeschooling families.


All of our local museums have free admission once a month. We avoid the free days during summer because they are so packed with families that you can barely walk around — much less see or do anything. After school starts though, it rocks.


Back-to-school time - Crappy Pictures

Get up and get kids out the door five days a week? And not be late? I’d fail at this. I’m not a morning person. My kids aren’t morning people either. Sure, this may sound like a lazy reason to love not starting school each fall, but I feel ever so thankful that we can operate on our own schedules. Nobody is going to get in trouble for being late to breakfast. Not even me. And sometimes (especially rainy days) we’ll just stay home and read books. In our pajamas. On a random Tuesday. This is allowed! Isn’t that amazing?

Excitement for learning

Back-to-school time - Crappy Pictures

But the main reason I love this (not) back-to-school time of year is checking in with my kids and discussing what interests them. Fall is when we regroup and figure out what we want to do in the coming year. What classes do they want to take? What books should we reserve at the library? What field trips should we go on? The excitement they have for learning about topics they are truly passionate about is contagious. It makes me energized and inspired to get the year started.

I’m ready for the school year to start!

Well, almost ready. All I need now is that giant pack of markers with 6,000 colors.


See more hilarious Crappy Pictures on SheKnows:  5 Reasons homemade popsicles saved my summer.

About the author:

Amber Dusick - Crappy PicturesAmber Dusick is one of our SheKnows Experts. She is the author of the bestselling humor book Parenting: Illustrated with Crappy Pictures. She writes and illustrates the blog Crappy Pictures where she captures the hilarious and frustrating things that happen in marriage and parenting. Find her on Twitter and Facebook.

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Comments on "Why I love (not) back-to-school time"

Manjari December 19, 2013 | 12:33 AM

Another unschooler here speaking up! I loved the article! And to Brigid, what's wrong with the word "unschooling"? It's just a term to help us identify what we're doing, so we don't have to call ourselves "people-who homeschool-their-kids-but-don't-really-follow-a-rigid-curriculum-but-instead-help-their-children-learn-at-their-own-pace-about-things-that-interest-them." I'm sorry you're offended by it (that's a real sorry, not a sorry-not-sorry). I'd hate to think anyone else is offended by my schooling choices. And don't worry - I'm not judging how you school your children. If it works for your family and your kids are learning what they need and want to learn, then you're doing great! (One last thing I just have to throw in here in defense of unschooling: I was unschooled, and I have never had a problem following the schedules and routines of the working world.)

Kimberley September 23, 2013 | 10:05 PM

I cannot express enough what a blessing homeschooling was to our family. For those who may worry about schedules, I can assure you that you will work out the best schedule for your children. My 3 homeschooled children are now a 28 year old police officer married with a baby, a 22 year old in her final year of college becoming a special needs educator, and a 21 year old licensed real estate agent. The idea that a homeschooled schedule will hold them back in the "real world" is fiction. A work ethic is going to get them out and excited about making their way in the world. They'll do just fine.

Brigid September 05, 2013 | 2:23 PM

Wouldn't not having your kids on a schedule make it difficult when they have to go out in the real world? Also, Miranda, it's "their" hair. By the way, I liked the article until the "unschooling" people came on. The word just reeks of "I'm better than a real school so I'm just going to do what I want." Why do people have to make up these labels to feel special?

Kimrose September 03, 2013 | 10:11 PM

YAY the homeschooling - have loved your blog for quite a while ;) We mostly Unschool as well - lots of us here! :)

Sabrina August 28, 2013 | 6:29 AM

Amber, I didn't know you homeschooled your kids too. I love you even more! I've been following your blog for a while, and I often read your posts out loud to my kids (they love the illustrations). We unschool our 3 kids, so your article is very true to our situation. I love when paper goes on sale for 10 cents a pack, and a pack of crayons for 75 cents in the fall. I stock up for the year.

Miranda August 27, 2013 | 12:58 PM

Lol, this was awesome!!! As a unschooling mom of three boys, I agree with it all, I love when the parks die down and all is left is a few other homeschooled kids. But sleeping in ,knowing there are parents pulling out there hair trying to get there kids out the door is my all time favourite part. Also knowing when I am old I will not have the regret of not spending enough time with them, and that they will hold all the extra memories close to them.

Nina August 27, 2013 | 12:46 PM

I'd love to homeschool my daughter but I'm not sure I'd have the ability to stick to a good enough schedule.

Karen August 27, 2013 | 12:25 PM

Oh yes, absolutely yes!!!! I love homeschooling my kids. We have a great time. We (um, I) do so much better operating on a free schedule. Oh and the parks and museums? Possibly the best thing about it.

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