Christmas has come and gone, the tree and all the decorations have been put away. The house is somewhat normal now, and feels a little bare. January is a time when many people decide on resolutions and changes they want to make. Our homeschooling journey should also go through a little change in January as well.
I always take January as a time to reflect on where we have come and what direction do I want to go. I have been homeschooling over 7 years. I am always looking for ways to make my homeschooling journey a wonderful memory for my girls. I chose to homeschool because of the overwhelming desire to create a lifetime of memories with my girls. I am not always successful with that, but my heart is to always be alert to the “mood” of my house and make the necessary changes that we need to get everyone back on track.
Everyone approaches change differently. But here are some ways I have sought change in my homeschool.
I find that my stress comes from the number one fact that I haven’t prayed about it. The majority of my problems come from me and my desires to seek my own will. If I am not taking it to God first, how am I going to find the direction he wants for my girls and our homeschool. I can’t be clear in my direction if I am not seeking his will.
A real life example of this, was my math curriculum, that I started using at the beginning of the year. I thought it was great. It was going to free up my time so I didn’t have to be there all the time. I was so excited, it could grade itself and I could save about 30-45 minutes doing something else. I did not pray about this curriculum.
Being flexible allow us to make the changes necessary. The beauty of homeschooling is that you can look at your past year and see if you are headed in the direction you want to. Maybe there is a subject that is a struggle or you have a schedule that is too full. Whatever the case may be, being flexible allows us to really see what changes need to be made and allows us the freedom to do so.
As I was praying about our math curriculum, I felt led to go back to our old math curriculum. Which would mean, I would have to be more hands on. But I made the switch after I had peace knowing it was the right direction for our homeschool.
Sometimes I can get so busy that I forget to listen to the hearts that matter the most. My agenda and what I want to accomplish can easily drown out the soft pleas of my girls. I strive to listen to them. If they are feeling stressed and overworked then I need to take that into consideration. However, we also need to lead them, and sometimes the greatest way to do that is through challenging them. Being mindful to listen to the heart is key in making any new year changes.
My girls would complain and complain with this great new math curriculum that I was so excited about. It was a burden. I believe all of this could have been avoided had I 1.) prayed about it and 2.) listened to my girls in the beginning.
Make the Changes
I like change. I feel for me, that it is a great opportunity to really seek God and his best, but also it is a chance to see fruit in my girls as well. By making the necessary changes, whether with curriculum, extra-curricular activities or just spending more time together. Making changes can feel refreshing. Who doesn’t want to start out the new year with a change of pace?
Two months after using this great new curriculum, I made the change and went back to our old curriculum. My homeschool has been happy ever since.
If you are reflecting on your past year with your homeschool and have a feeling that something needs to change. A new year for changes is just what you might need. Remember to pray, be flexible, listen and make the changes.
How do you start the new year? Do you plan on making changes? If so, what changes do you make?
Katheryn Foudray is a homeschooling mom of five daughters, ages 2-11. She and her husband Bret live in Sahuarita. Join Katheryn online at The Healthy and Fit Homeschool Mom for weekly challenges that will help you adopt a healthier lifestyle. You will find daily workouts that are under 30 minutes and will leave you feeling great. She also shares her real life homeschool adventures that will surely leave you laughing and encouraged. www.thehealthyandfithomeschoolmom.com