I previously wrote about my favorite homeschool-related books, which I encourage you to check out if you haven't already. I gather so much goodness and inspiration from these titles and their authors. Homeschooling is a marathon, not a sprint, and reading encouraging words is something I rely on year after year. As an avid reader and book lover, I've also curated a list of five non-homeschooling books that are making a difference in our current homeschooling journey and our day-to-day lives. Homeschooling is about more than teaching subjects and cultivating a love of learning in our kids. I've selected a book from each of the following areas: Parenting, Home Decorating, Health and Wellness, Cooking/Meal Planning, Self-help/Spiritual Guidance. Continue reading »
Have you discovered that feeding the kids is the homeschooling challenge nobody warned you about? For homeschooling to work, home has to work, including the food. Especially the food! We've put together some tips for keeping your sanity while feeding your homeschooled kids. Continue reading »
When I started homeschooling, I knew my big challenge was going to be helping my kids learn. Having them become academically prepared was my overriding goal. Choosing the right curriculum and the right educational philosophy were paramount. Imagine my surprise when it turned out they were pretty good learners once I refined our approach to homeschooling. My real challenge turned out to be the unexpected one. Continue reading »
Rhythms, routines, and rituals help us stay centered and on track as homeschooling parents, and they enable our children to relax and feel secure because they know what to expect each day. A thoughtful routine allows us to focus our energy in one area at a time, knowing that other essential areas will not be neglected. Well-established rhythms help us manage the ebb and flow of homeschooling and free our remaining energy to deal with the unexpected. Continue reading »
When my kids were little I'd make a list of things that needed to get done. Very rarely did I ever feel like I was accomplishing anything on the list, and almost always, I was correct -- I did very rarely ever accomplish anything on the list. Continue reading »
My first t-shirt as a homeschooling parent proclaimed, "Don't bother me. I'm having a parent-teacher conference."
This expressed well my initial thoughts about the roles of mother and teacher while homeschooling. I could see my "teacher self" talking to my "mother self," echoing the familiar adult roles in education that involves public school...
Past my first few months of homeschooling more than a decade and a half ago, I have not separated a "teacher self" from my "mom self." At the same time, I found it was important for me to set boundaries of time and space that made my family function well. Continue reading »
Secrets of a Successful Homeschool Mom: I think every successful homeschool mom has a secret...her secret to managing it all.
Because the truth is that homeschooling itself is overwhelming; it's just difficult to get it all done. When you add in the responsibilities of keeping the household going along with it, sometimes we feel like we're on some roller-coaster that we can't ever get off. Academics to teach, social skills to impart, character to instill, cleaning to complete, food to make, activities to attend, transportation to provide, jobs to fulfill...it's just so much. Too much, sometimes. Enough that it usually takes some sort of plan, some sort of secret -- to actually get it all managed well. Continue reading »
It hit me this morning, as I dumped dirty clothes into the washing machine. I started pouring in the soap, lamenting the fact that I had to take the time to do laundry when I had this and this and this to do, when I suddenly thought, "Why am I doing this?" Now, before you give me the obvious answer -- "Because if you don't, you and your family will wear dirty clothing and will probably have CPS come take your kids from you because you're a homeschooler that goes around in stinky attire", understand that my question to myself had more of an emphasis on the "I" than on the "Why". In other words, "Why am I doing this, rather than my children?" Continue reading »
Sometimes we have had a designated nature table, something which is suggested by both the Waldorf-inspired approach and the Montessori-inspired approach to homeschooling, and something many Charlotte Mason homeschoolers implement as well.
Other times, we have just gathered seasonal treasures together as a kitchen table centerpiece. A walk in the brisk air, the scavenger hunt for natural objects that are lovely to see and touch and smell and shake, the artful arranging and rearranging of the bounty -- these refresh the senses and clear the cobwebs out of minds. Continue reading »
When home is in order, it seems that life is in order. It's no wonder, since God is not the author of confusion or chaos. A disorderly house can easily destroy the peace of an entire household, especially when something needed immediately cannot be found. But when we get organized, our frustrating moments will be fewer, and we will have more time for our families, for homeschooling, for ministry or for working towards other goals. Continue reading »
What are your priorities? Are you the type to plan ahead? Do you have lists for daily activities, weekly menus, grocery items and coupons ...or even a list of things for which you need to make a list? Or instead, do you find yourself disorganized and short on teaching time? Continue reading »