A Father's Heart Title
Todd Wilson
How to encourage Your
homeschooling wife
Hey Dad, I don’t know about you, but I got more stuff done during the COVID lockdown than I have in years. We plastered and painted a few rooms, renovated a 1963 camper, and cleaned out areas that had been neglected.

Today, I’m working on my cargo trailer that we’ve hauled around the country for the last fifteen years. It’s a great little trailer, but it’s starting to look a little rough and the side running lights have stopped working. I thought I’d use the time before the world goes back to normal—and it will—to get it fixed up and ready to roll.

My plan is to remove some of the inside and outside panels to get to the wiring and possibly run new wires through the walls. My first stop will be YouTube to watch someone else do it. I could try to wing it, but why? Last week I replaced the brakes on our Suburban. In the past, I’d just dig in and wing it, but I always came close to breaking something that I hadn’t counted on. This time, I watched a three-minute video and changed the brakes lickety-split.

That’s the great thing about houses, Suburbans, and trailers: they’re pretty straightforward and easy to fix. Man, I wish being married to a homeschooling wife was like that. Just watch a quick YouTube video…repeat it in real life…and presto, great marriage/family/homeschool.

That gave me an idea! I’m going to try to break down the idea of encouraging your homeschooling wife like a how to YouTube video, only in magazine form.

So in your mind, picture the familiar YouTube layout and triangular, red “play” icon. Hit the button, and you see me, The Familyman, standing in my garage, covered in grease and grime…

A women walking down steps guiding a man by the hand
Hello, Dad, thanks for joining me. Today, we’re looking at practical ways to encourage your homeschooling wife. I’ll be using my wife as an example, but the key is to remember my wife is not your wife. You’ll have to adjust and tweak some of these ideas to best fit the needs of your wife.

That’s key! You need to know your wife. I mean really know what discourages her, what encourages her, and how you can best meet those needs.

So let’s take a quick assessment:

Does your homeschooling wife like the school part of homeschooling? Believe me, most don’t. If she doesn’t, then you need to remind her that homeschool shouldn’t look like regular school. She has the freedom to do school any way that works best for her and your children. They don’t have to start at 8 a.m. They can be finished by noon. They don’t have to have an art class, learn music, or do geometry. If she likes getting up late, finishing early, and reading books out loud, then encourage her to do so. Keep reminding her that her school doesn’t have to look like “their” school.


Does your wife feel like she has the adequate resources to accomplish the task at hand? Here’s the deal, Dad: Good tools make the job easier (you know that), and good tools aren’t cheap. So make sure she has the tools she needs. By the way, don’t be surprised when she buys one tool and it doesn’t work. You just smile and say, “Get what you need.” That’s putting your money where your mouth is.


Does your wife feel like the children listen to what she asks of them? This is a biggie, Dad, and where you might need to flex your dad-muscle a little. There is nothing more discouraging than having kids that you have to fight to do school. Your children should do what they’re told to do in a timely fashion and do it to completion. Oh, I know they won’t, but they should, and it’s your duty as the dad to make sure they do.

So if your wife says, “They don’t do what I ask,” then you should call a family meeting or hold a private meeting and lay down the law. “When your mom asks you to do school, I expect you to drop what you’re doing and do school. If she asks you to do math, I expect it to be done. If she asks you to play with a broth-er or sister, I expect you to do it without complaint. And if you fail to obey immediately and drag your feet the consequences will be _______.” Then follow up that day by asking your wife how they did. If they did well, reward them with a trip to DQ, and if they didn’t do well, you know what to do.

“She needs you to cheer her on, brag on her to others, and be convinced that homeschooling is the best thing for your children. She needs you to be on board with this whole adventure, reminding her of the joy of having your children home.

Does your wife feel encouraged by the co-op she is involved in? Homeschool co-ops are wonderful things and should offer encouragement to homeschool children as well as moms, but sometimes they can become burdensome and discouraging. But they’re hard to quit because your wife feels pressure to “stick with it’ and fears what others will think if she takes a break. That’s where you step in and help her do the right thing. And the right thing might be for you to say, “Honey, I think it’s time for you to part ways with this group for a little while. If you need someone to blame, blame me. Tell them your husband said you had to. I’m okay with that.”

Of course, you’re not dictating, but when you know your wife, you’ll know if she is being encouraged or discouraged by her group. She needs you to be her knight in shining armor.


Does she feel encouraged by you? Your wife feels discouraged when you make snide comments about her not doing anything, finishing early, or the fact that the kids seem dumb. She needs you to cheer her on, brag on her to others, and be convinced that homeschooling is the best thing for your children. She needs you to be on board with this whole adventure, reminding her of the joy of having your children home.

OK, that concludes our YouTube video… it’s still not as easy as re-wiring a trailer, but it’s way more important.
I know you can do it.
The fate of your homeschooling
world is counting on you.

You ‘da dad!


odd Wilson, author of Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe and Help! I’m Married to a Homeschooling Mom, is a dad, writer, conference speaker, and former pastor. Todd’s humor and gut-honest realness have made him a favorite speaker at homeschool conventions across the country and a guest on Focus on the Family. Todd and his wife Debbie homeschool their eight children in northern Indiana and travel around America in the Familyman Mobile. You can visit Familyman Ministries at: www.familymanweb.com.