Today, I would like to share my thoughts about what you DON’T need in order to educate your children. These are my personal thoughts and are intended to be an encouragement for you but everyone is different.
I know that we do things much different than a lot of people. But, isn’t that true for all of us? So, here is my list of what you DON’T need.
- Formal Curriculum (or Boxed Curriculum) – Having and using a boxed, formal curriculum is not bad and for a lot of people, it works really well. But it isn’t something that you have to have. If it works for you, great! But one of the beautiful things about educating your children is that you can pick and choose the bits and pieces that work for your children and skip the parts that don’t work so well. There are a million and a half ways to educate and a million and a half choices for what and how to teach any given concept. So, pick what works best for your family but don’t feel like you have to go with a complete, formal, boxed curriculum.
- To Know It All – I have only been homeschooling the girls for a year now but I have had a lot of people tell me “I couldn’t possibly teach my kids. I don’t know enough.” But the truth is – You Don’t Have To Know It All! No one can know it all; why should I be any different? I am learning a lot right before or right alongside of my girls. We all learn together and we are all stronger for it.
- To Have It All Planned Out – While it is good to have a plan and to know where you are headed, it doesn’t have to be all scheduled out. You do not have to have a day by day breakdown of every single thing your kids are going to do and learn. You do not have to have it all written down. (I understand that there are some states that require different documentation than where I live so please take those requirements into account with this one.) I do write a weekly set of plans out but these are flexible and if the girls get involved in a project and it grows and they are learning, I’ll change the plans. (That is why I write in pencil.)
- Social Media – I know. Coming from a blogger that is probably a little strange sounding. But really, we have to use social media wisely. Getting ideas – great. Learning about a product – fantastic. Finding encouragement – wonderful. Often, though, social media can be a distraction and a burden. I don’t know about you, but it is really easy for me to get bummed out when I look at Facebook. I visit every day and keep in touch with a lot of people, but it is an easy place to get depressed and begin comparing yourself to others. Pinterest is another one of those social media sites that can be depressing. You look at the beautiful sewing and lovely cakes and healthy dinners and start questioning your dedication to your family because what you do looks so different. It is easy to do. (Just for the record – you are special, unique, and a creation of the Lord God, who has a plan just for you. No one else can fulfill the plan he has for you so you are perfect for your family, even if you can’t make the perfect looking 5 layer birthday cake and matching dress to go with it.) But, social media can be useful and be used wisely. Just know your limits, know your abilities, and don’t expect too much out of yourself. (Yep – preaching to myself here.)
These areas are what I choose to share with you because they are what I struggle with most myself. I second guess myself on curriculum choices (I’ll share those later this week). I look at the beautiful planner I have and feel that tug of guilt for not using it better. I hear the questions the girls ask and think “I am so far in over my head!” I check Facebook or Pinterest (my two social media of choice) and begin thinking how much “less” I am than others on my wall. But, then I go back to my DO need list and remember those things. Pull out prayer and I feel better immediately. Find my supporters and see what they are up to and I feel stronger.
I just want to encourage you to let go of these things and hold onto the DO list a little bit more. (Did you catch the DO need list? I shared it yesterday.) May you be blessed as you strive to parent your children in a strong, godly manner. At Home.
Please visit these fellow Crew member who are participating in this week’s blog hop.
Lisa Marie @ The Canadian Homeschooler
Lexi @ Lextin Academy
Karen @ My Harbor Lights
Jen @ Happy Little Homemaker
Joanie @ Simple Living Mama
Lisa @ Home to 4 Kiddos
Dawn @ Double O Farms
Tess @ Circling Through This Life
Click on the image at left to find links for all of the blogs participating in this week’s blog hop.