“The home is the first and most effective place to learn the lessons of life: truth, honor, virtue, self control, the value of education, honest work, and the purpose and privilege of life. Nothing can take the place of home in rearing and teaching children, and no other success can compensate for failure in the home.”
― David O. McKay
Summer break has come and gone… which for us means nothing! 🙂 The beauty of homeschooling is that we can learn everyday and it’s a beautiful thing!
I’ve realized that I’ve been missing out on opportunities and advantages as a stay at home mom for years! This year has been eye-opening and full of trial and error but hey! I made it!! We all made it!! From inexpensive/free curriculum to park days with the family, I’ve learned my ropes as a home educator and I know there’s more I haven’t experienced yet and some things I could have avoided my first year that I would love to share with moms considering this journey! So here is my top 5 things I wish I knew before homeschooling!!
5. I wish I knew that I didn’t have to subscribe to EVERY HOMESCHOOLING WEBSITE known to man! My inbox has become a spam closet of all the websites I affiliated myself with over the past year. Everyday, I unsubscribe from something to find ten more sites I completely forgot about that advertises “free” worksheet links that send me to a site where a mom is advertising a book she wrote about housekeeping or how to earn extra money at home. It’s so overwhelming and repetitive! So for you potential home educators, PLEASE learn from my mistake!! There are plenty of mom groups that can send you to some form of revelation that works for your home. Start there but don’t go into the vortex of website hoarding.
4. DO NOT FOLLOW TRENDS!!! Researching homeschool routines and schedules will ruin your peace and your sanity. Because I subscribed to so many websites and reading every article provided, I compared my homeschool experience to others and in the process completely changing my life for the worst. Comparison definitely kills! It is good to look for advice but please discernment and prayer when finding ways to make your homeschool work for you and your children. What bothered me most, is trying to create the best “homeschool room” for my children so they will be excited about learning every morning. I lost the fact that my children are not pleased with posters and songs. Dollar Tree almost took all of my coins because all the home educators fancy DIYs and garage sale finds. Kudos to them for the amazing spaces, but in this time of my life and structure, it’s not what I’m suppose to do in this season. I know I am to focus on my children’s mastery and well-being.
3. This is something I knew but didn’t really put into effect because of my anxiety to be the best home educator I can be… and that is to JOURNAL and STUDY THE WORD OF GOD! As a family, we do include bible study into our school day but I’m talking about incorporating personal study time individually. I feel that I spent so much time getting my children to study (which is not a bad thing at all) that I didn’t have the opportunity to get to God for myself and having my children see me personally pursue Him. I believe it is important for your children to see you do what you expect to see them do AKA leading by example.
2. JUST BECAUSE IT’S FREE DOESN’T MEANS IT’S FOR YOU! over the course of a year, I’ve managed to save a hard drive full of curriculum that was given to me by association. I have yet to open those files!! Obviously I need to clean my computer…obviously! :/
1. Last but definitely not least… This is my number one thing I wish I knew about homeschooling is… EACH CHILD NEEDS DIFFER. All five of my children have unique and amazing gifts and skills. I’ve learned that because I tried to give them all cookie cutter education, they didn’t benefit or grow from it. In actuality, I stunted their learning because I tried to convenience their learning based on the materials I’ve gained over the year. I’ve wasted time and energy on what is “successful” to one mom instead of my own success. I tried to make my life easier which caused a lot of frustration and ignorance on my part. As the homemaker, I am to be the peace maker in my home… I didn’t create peace that I desired and those moments, I will never get back; so now I’ve learned by lesson and will do what is inspired by and for my family.
As a mother and woman of God, I hope I have inspired and encourage other moms behind me to find your groove and work with your God-given resources. Titus 2 reads, “ …teach what is good. 4 Then they (you) can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.” My ultimate goal is to please God and by pleasing Him, my role as a mother, wife, friend, sister, daughter will be fulfilled. Home education is not one size fits all but it is for all. For all who is called and is purposed to raise up leaders and a better tomorrow. Teaching starts at home and if you’re not educating the way that works for you and yours, then you have wasted your time.
Enjoy the journey and lessons learned along the way!