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Over the past 18 years that I have been homeschooling, I have had many ups and downs. I have had years that went really well and we got so much accomplished, and then there were years that were less than what I expected.
But through it all, I know that as I remain faithful to the Lord, and faithful to His calling to homeschool, He will fill in the gaps and grace will abound.
I learned that there are a few things that are key to having a successful homeschool year — and finishing all the curriculum isn’t one of them!
If you have been homeschooling for any amount of time, you know that each year can be so different because our life circumstances change. My first year of homeschooling was difficult because I gave birth to my second child in January of my daughter’s Kindergarten year. But we pushed our way through, allowing life to happen, and making learning a part of our day.
Today I want to share with you a few key principles that will help you have a successful homeschool year. But before I get into that, let’s look at what “successful” means.
I am not talking about “success” as the world sees it, but as the Lord sees it!
Homeschool success is not determined by whether you complete every lesson, your kids score perfect on every test, or your family dresses in matching outfits. Now, none of these things are bad, but they do not determine success in and of themselves.
Successful homeschooling is living in obedience to the Lord. It is following Him in how you plan, how you organize your day, and what you study. It is focusing more on the eternal than the things of this world.
3 Principles to Put in Place to Have a Successful Homeschool Year
Every homeschool year (and every homeschool day) should begin in prayer. We can do nothing without the Lord and we need His guidance each and every day. Take all your decisions to the Lord as you prepare and plan your homeschool year. Don’t look around at the world, but seek His face. He is faithful to guide you!
You will need to have some sort of plan in place for your homeschool. This point is where I have swung back and forth on the spectrum of hyper planning to very relaxed. What I have found works best is somewhere in the middle.
Over the past several years, I have been planning our homeschool days in blocks of time, and our homeschool year in intervals and it has worked so well! I go into this planning method in great detail in my new ebook, All About Homeschool.
While prayer and planning are kind of the main keys to a successful homeschool year, I don’t want to forget about being fully present. It is a real temptation to be “home” with our kids, but not really be “present”. Know what I mean?
For example, you are there to teach them, wash the clothes, fix the meals, but you are not really present to the point where you cherish your kids, enjoy their company, play with them, look them in the eyes and listen to them, etc.
I know homeschooling can be very tiring and sometimes stressful, but let’s not forget to be fully present for our kids. They need us, they need our love, our attention, our example, our acceptance.
What is keeping you from having a successful homeschool year?
Are you forgetting to take it to the Lord in prayer?
Are you struggling to get some sort of plan in place?
Are you “home” but not really “present”?
What are your struggles? Please let me know in the comments!