Strengthen Your Family Through Biblical Homeschooling

Tag: objectives and goals

hot chocolate candy cane january

That can mean only one thing. It’s time to relax and evaluate for the new year ahead.

Somehow, we have to pull ourselves back from the great holiday blitz and go on homeschooling. One of the things that helped me most was to realize it would take a little time to adjust — just like back at the beginning of the school year.  It was o.k. to take a deep breath and relax.

Reading aloud makes a cozy winter language activity.

The rhythm can create a feeling of  peaceful re-entry. Pick a book about a winter adventure or new beginnings. Introduce a series that will invite your children to read the other titles in the series, on their own time,  just for fun.

The new year is a perfect time to take inventory of what we accomplished this past semester.

Make special individual time with each child, hot chocolate in hand, and chat about what they learned academically and in real-life skills. Give each child  new journal to record their progress and write down goals for the new spring semester.

It’s a good idea for mom to create a journal too.

Include what worked and what didn’t. No matter how optimistic our beginning-of-the-year goals, failing to reach a few is okay. We learn best through trial and error. Innovation comes from failure. Did you know that Kellogg’s Corn Flakes was invented when a pan of boiled wheat was left in a baking pan overnight? Sounds like homeschooling to me!

Pray and ask God for creative ways to accomplish what you could not.

When I realized my 6th grade daughter was behind in math, I needed to be honest myself. I did not have the time to think through algebra with her. A huge weight dropped off my shoulders when I could admit she needed a tutor. Many teenagers in other homeschool families make perfect tutors. They’re happy about the income and most are open to bartering.

There are plenty of free homeschool checklists online.

Too often we want to keep pushing forward when a little evaluation can yield a better result. Checklists cover social skills, practical living skills, character qualities, and spiritual growth as well as academic milestones for each grade. I use evaluation lists to help me think through my objectives, but I implement them loosely.

Children are not wired the same and develop at different paces. If my child isn’t good at something now, I know in two to four months, he or she will catch on just fine. By backing off for a month or two, then reintroducing a concept, I found my children caught on after all.  All children have their own gifting and learn in their own way. Striving to fit them precisely into a curriculum scope and sequence will only led to tears and frustration. For you and them.

Below are a few points to help evaluate the fall semester:

  • Has your child mastered concepts he was taught in each subject?
  • What special projects did they complete?
  • What books did they read?
  • Are they growing in their extracurricular interests and skills?
  • Do children follow instructions better?
  • Are any of them moving towards self-government?
  • Are they learning to control emotions?
  • Can your preschooler or K5’er sit still longer? Pay attention longer? This was a huge accomplishment for my son!
  • Is your schedule working for you?
  • Can you work smarter and not harder anywhere? If it’s easier for the kids to do math in the morning because you are freshest, then-do it!
  • Are you doing too much? Too many outside commitments?
  • Are you doing enough? Is there a child who is bored and needs to be challenged more?
  • Could you use a mom-time of refreshment? Can you build in some necessary self-care somewhere? Don’t feel guilty!
  • How are chores going? Is it time to graduate someone to more responsibility?
  • Has Bible time been a priority or has it fallen through the cracks?
  • Can I implement hands-on activities to liven a subject up?

Most companies complete inventories. Like them, doing an evaluation can give you a good perspective of how much ground you’ve gained or where you lost ground.  Taking an inventory of your homeschool progress can help refine your focus and objectives. Above all else, you can rest easy knowing learning comes in all forms,  Homeschool children are absorbent sponges and are probably further along that you think!

For a special evaluation treat,  try a hot chocolate snowflake-float with vanilla ice cream and a peppermint stick as you relax and evaluate for the new year.

Blessing to you on your new year!


This article was originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

 

Read through our essential homeschool resources for more encouragement!
Sign up for the Teach Them Diligently newsletter to receive more great articles!

Read our Blog, join TTD365, follow on Facebook and Instagram, and sign up to attend one of our homeschool events!

                                                                           Image result for wordpress blog symbol       Image result for facebook image    Related image    Image result for events icon

 

 

Register for the Homeschool Convention Today

Object Lessons from Life

“It is more important for your child to be who he should be than know what he should know. “

Knowledge is important, but character trumps that. If you teach your child to manage time well, work hard, and love learning (and if you teach him HOW to learn), he can conquer any learning curve ahead in the future. If, however, you teach him knowledge without character or the skills above, he will be hard-pressed to continue learning new skills as an adult.

 

We use object lessons from daily life to mold our children’s character, foster a love for God, and inspire a love for learning. Every little circumstance and observance is a chance to learn about life, God, and ourselves.

Object Lessons from Life:

  • Someone trips over a stone:  a sin we consider very small can cause great damage and downfall.
  • Salt and pepper on a bland dish at dinner: the Lord wants us to season our words with grace to make them easier for others to swallow.
  • Choosing healthy foods over sugary snacks: be discerning about the choices we make. Do we think ahead ahead to the results of our decisions, and are we making wise choices?
  • Boiling spaghetti noodles: the Lord sometimes takes those he loves through a trying time of “hot water” so our hearts become tender and of benefit to those around us.
  • Gift giving: a gift comes as an unexpected surprise reminding us that God loves us — not because of our behavior or it is deserved, but because of his goodness and great love for us.
  • Honey on a cracker: reminds us God’s word is sweeter than honey to our souls and sustains our spiritual bodies.
  • A project that must be done in steps: reminds us God is a God of order.  When we follow his commands, we can see the beauty at the end of the process.
  • An army of ants in the yard:  a chance to stop and observe God’s creation to learn from them as they work diligently, work together, care for one another, and store up food. God uses them as an example of a great worth ethic.
  • Cleaning the smudges off the window: God wants to wash us clean with the water of the Word.
  • Adding food coloring to pancakes (or cupcakes or cookie dough): a lesson about how what we take into our minds changes us. We need to carefully guard what we allow into our hearts and minds.
  • A bird’s song on a cool, wet spring morning: a  reminder to be thankful and sing praise to God for our blessings. The bird was outside, wet and cold, but still sings for another day and a bright sun to warm him.

There are so many more object lessons from life we can use as teaching opportunities. Everywhere you look, you see examples of God’s love, his greatness, and his principles for life. You just need to be mindful as you look around you.

Ask the Lord to help you look for those object lessons of life.

Ask for eyes to see the lesson and the words to share it with your child. It only takes a few extra seconds to do it.  When done consistently, you teach your child to be one who expects to see God show up in mundane moments of life. These moment-by-moment conversations develop their desire to share the same lessons with others.

 

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. 3 John 1:7

 

Here is a link to sign up for our Teach Them Diligently newsletter to receive more great articles!

 

 

The A to Z of a Characterhealthy Homeschool

Teach Them Diligently 365 members, listen to:

“The A to Z of a Characterhealthy Homeschool”

If we homeschool simply to achieve high academic marks, we are squandering the opportunity to influence our children for Christ. Character healthy leaders are those children who have learned to elevate virtues above feelings. Check out the video for more information.

Become a member of Teach Them Diligently 365 for access to more!

Sign up for a free 7 day trial and explore the extensive content!

Register for the Homeschool Convention Today

Since the movie, The Bucket List, it seems everyone has a bucket list for something. Merriam-Webster  defines ‘bucket list’ as “a list of things that one has not done before but wants to do before dying.” Do you have a homeschool bucket list?

We might tweak a homeschool bucket list to read:  “a list of things we want to accomplish before our children graduate”.  Our bucket list may be described as goals and may change early. Even if we don’t have a written list, we all have a fluid sense of what we want to accomplish tucked away in the crevices of our brain.

Here are some common homeschool bucket list items:

  • College admission
  • Above average skills in all subjects
  • Skills to make a reasoned argument
  • A love for learning
  • Life skills (budgeting, cooking, driving)
  • Well-rounded adult
  • High college entrance scores
  • Exotic field trips
  • Music, art, drama, or athletic achievements

“Oh no,” you say. “I want more than that for my kiddos. I want them to be good people, serve God, have good character, and be productive.” Do our actions back up our statement?

Quite frequently in my homeschool career, I said I wanted my children to leave our school as adults who serve God. I often said my bucket list (goals) was to raise godly adults.

The deep-down truth? My actions indicated I was really focusing most on the items in the bucket list above. Issues of character development ran a distant second to academic goals.

We need to be honest with ourselves about what we’re actually putting on our bucket list. It’s easy to get caught up chasing academic goals at the expense of our deepest desires for our children.

Support groups, the latest book, the ‘perfect’ homeschool family at the convention, or pressure from family and friends may make us alter our bucket list to only educational goals. It’s hard work to maintain the focus on our real heart’s desire for our children.

How do we match our actions to our heart?

To create a bucket list that includes love of God, service to others, honesty, patience, and all the other qualities we strive for, work through this activity:

  1. Create a homeschool bucket list including only character qualities you want your child to develop. These are not life-long objectives, so re-evaluate and update often.
  2. Make suitable-for-framing copy of your list, frame it, and hang it for all to see. What better way to match actions with ideas than to allow those ideas to be public?
  3. Explain the bucket list to your children. Ask what they would like to add. Ask them what area they need to work on. In other words, allow them to adopt the character bucket list as their own.
  4. As your children get older and move closer to graduation, encourage them to make their own life-long bucket list.

You may find you need to detox from academics for a while — especially if a child is floundering with character issues. If you find yourself slipping back to academic goals as a primary motivator, put the books away and engage in activities that build the qualities on your list. You can catch up on algebra or composition later, but can you catch up on character training?

Every now and then, you may have to review your personal bucket list. Not just to check off all the things you dream of doing but to be sure your list supports your mission regarding character training goals. It’s easy to get off track with what’s important because life is busy. So, re-evaluate and steady your course of action as needed.

My children have all graduated from our homeschool. Have they completed everything on the bucket list? No. Like all of us, they are still growing and maturing in the Lord. The ideas are implanted, and those seeds will grow as they become mature adults.

What’s on your homeschool bucket list? Even if your children are young, begin preparing the list of qualities God has put in your heart for your children. Homeschooling bucket lists are, after all, about far more than academics!

 

Here is a link to another great article on “Preparing Teenagers for Adulthood“.

 

And you can sign up for the newsletter to receive more great articles!

 

 

Aiming Arrows into Adulthood

If you’re a Teach Them Diligently 365 member, check out the workshop, “Aiming Arrows into Adulthood”

Teach Them Diligently 365

As homeschooling parents, how can we prepare our children for adulthood? And how can we prepare our hearts (through prayer and effective communication) to release our kids, into a new season? There’s life after graduation– with college, careers, romance, weddings, and next-generation purpose. Let’s aim and launch our arrows to hit God’s mark!

Become a member of Teach Them Diligently 365 for access to videos and more!

Sign up for a free 7 day trial and explore the extensive content!

 

This article originally published on our Homeschool Launch Blog.

Register for the Homeschool Convention Today
Homeschooling Parents

About David and Leslie Nunnery

Leslie Nunnery and her husband David founded Teach Them Diligently, the nation’s premier source for gospel-centered homeschool events. With seven years of homeschooling experience from preschool-high school and a passion to encourage and equip homeschool families, this mom of 4 shares her know-how and insights weekly through Teach Them Diligently media and on TeachThemDiligently365.com.

Yes, I want more from this Homeschooling Community!

Questions?

800-223-9491

Teach Them Diligently Homeschool Convention
2435 East North Street, Suite 1108 PMB 363
Greenville, SC 29615
teachthemdiligently.net

Homeschool Blog

Homeschool 365