Apr 16, 2009

Secrets of homeschooling

After 13 years of homeschooling some secrets I will happily share:

Trust God:
If He has called you, He will enable you. Put Him first and everything else will fall into it's proper place (I promise and so does God!)

Ask God (first):
Before you do anything, seek God. Also ask Him what gifts and talents He has given your child(ren)...once you know them, then you can focus on 'tuning' them up. God has given them to each of us, so that we can walk in the fullness of His purposes for our lives. The Holy Spirit is a God of revelation...He so wants you to come and ask Him!

Loosen up:
In life when you run a race, you stretch before a run. Do the same with home school, allow yourself time to find what each of you enjoy and what your areas of interest are.

All learning doesn't come from curriculum:
Curriculum can be great, or it can be a major joy stealer. Pray before you buy any curriculum, ask God what He wants for your child(ren) this year.

If a curriculum doesn't work, don't keep using it:
If you are miserable with a curriculum and if it truly isn't working after giving it a chance, OR modifying it to fit your needs...well, then either sell it or give it away. You'll be so happy that you did.

Learn to say no:
Especially for new homeschoolers; don't try to do every field trip, class or opportunity that comes up. Pace yourself, embrace simplicity. The opportunity will come up again, most likely. If you try to do everything, you will get burnt out.

Learn to have a thankful heart:
See the blessings of homeschooling. Stop often to Praise God, alone and as a family.

Don't be worried about socialization:
God will not let your child(ren) become 'unsocialized.' He will give you opportunities, in His perfect timing, for friendships. Sometimes you will go through 'quiet' times, when it is just you and them. This is okay, as God is working His Hand in each of you (keep your eyes and heart open for what He wants to do currently.)

Pray for support:
Whether a face to face friendship for you (the homeschool mum) or an online friendship. It is important to have someone who can stand with you in prayer and share the good times and bad with you. Make time to get together alone (online it can be done too!).

Make use of free resources:
The library is an under used resource by most families. There are so many wonderful books, dvds, videos, library passes....get to know your libraries. Don't just use one...look to neighboring town libraries and use their resources as well. *upon entering into homeschooling, I prayed and ask God for protection from evil- this most definitely included our books...the library unfortunately has books that are NOT pleasing to God. By asking for His guidance and by teaching my children to only put things before their eyes that HONOR God, we avoided (and learned the gift of self-control and discernment) evil. If my kids found a book that they hadn't realized had things (such as witchcraft, rude language) in it...they came to me and let me set it aside to be returned.

Make time to go to the Christian homeschool convention:
You will be so encouraged by all the other families that come, old and new homeschoolers alike. You will have the opportunity to glean wisdom and have hands on time with lots of different curriculums/books. Don't always try to recreate the wheel, let someone else show you how they've done it, perhaps it will be just what you needed to hear. OR perhaps you can go and look for opportunities to bless someone else that is struggling or searching.

*Enjoy yourself:
Your homeschooling road isn't eternal (though sometimes it may feel like that)...your children will grow, they will learn, and so will you. Breath deep and choose to joyfully homeschool those He has given you. Take pictures, you will want them when the road finally comes to an end, so that you can look back and marvel at it all.


SocialWkr24/7 said...

Oh Kimmie - you are such an encouragement to me! I was homeschooled for a couple of years when I was young and I am really hoping to be able to homeschool my (future) children some day - and sometimes this idea is not well recieved by our society. I appreciate hearing how God has blessed you and your children through homeschooling. :)

Michelle said...

Thanks for the encouraging reminders.

Emily said...

Even after homeschooling for 9 years, I still need a list like that. Awesome ideas.

Shonni said...

Nicely put Kimmie! Also many of the things I would say after homeschooling for 15 years.

Stacy said...

I love this part:
"Ask Him what gifts and talents He has given your children... once you know them, then you can focus on 'tuning' them up."Yes. I forget that part. :(
Thank you for reminding me.

And I love your encouragement to embrace simplicity.

And I love YOU, Kimmie!

"Indescribable" said...

so are you (or is it HIM) speaking directly to me or what!

mom said...

All good tips, Kimmie!

It does seem that most of our learning occurs outside of the curriculum we use!

Tammy ~@~

Cathy said...

I love the learn to say no, don't worry about socialization, and pray for support. I so continually need a tune-up on say8ing no. I think it's so true, despite the world's perspective on this one, that our children are fine with just us and when it's God's timing He will provide. And, I've been amazed on this side of it where my prayers from yesterday were answered for friendship and support - not that I've got it all together in that department - just that you can see God's hand as He put people in my path that I couldn't have caused to be there myself.


Bobbie-Jo said...

This was very encouraging to me. I'm having a communication problem with the teacher we report to. I don't know if I'm not doing what is required or enough of it or ... what. I need a boost, knowing that God has a plan for our homeschool and for each child. He won't "leave them behind."

andrea said...

what a great post. i don't homeschool but you had a list that 1. helps me understand how you/others take on this huge task God has called you to
2. made me think about how I can slow down our life and work with my kiddos personalities
3. send more time praying for my children.
thought it was interesting how many points I could relate to. Blessings as you bless your family!

Mama Jenn said...

I kind of stumbled into you blog. I am also a homeschooler and I think this is awesome advice! Thanks!

Rachel Meier said...

Here Here! I just went to my first ever homeschool convention and it was an incredible encouragement and motivator to keep going!

Renata said...

Thankyou so much for posting this. I've printed it out & am putting it in my folder. You see we've just announced we're homeschoolers now - I know it's been a long time coming & thankyou for answering all of my questions. God has guided us to this & although we've been slow in the uptake, we know it's what we're meant to be doing. It's interesting, so far friends who I think would be negative have been positive, however I'm sure that will change as the townspeople get to know. (Not that we'll have that much interaction with them). Anyway thanks again - I really needed this reminder that h/s is for God & to pray, pray, pray for it each day.

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