10 things I’ve learned in 10 years of Home Education

1. The most important ingredient to a successful homeschool is a confident, peaceful mom. Kids will pick up and emulate the attitude of the leader. The leader is you, and if you are panicked, disheveled or worried, they will be also.

2. Because of the above, you must chill out. I don’t care how hard it is, or how much room you want to leave for doubt. Doubt does not belong in the house of education. Kick him out and make room for peace.

3. Your kids will learn in spite of you. This means it doesn’t matter if you are doing the wrong thing or choosing the wrong curriculum, or your beautiful schedule gets all disheveled by some unforeseen event. Your kids are hard wired to learn and they will learn with or without you.

4. If you want your kids to be interested in something, you need to do it. This work every time without fail. What you do, they will want to do. Embrace this. Be interested and active and they will follow you.

5. Going to the park/getting outside is important. More than you can possibly imagine. Do it!

6. Empty spaces breed creativity. This is true for both physical space; an empty table, an empty floor, an empty chalkboard, as well as spaces of time. If you want creative space, guard emptiness, especially when they are little. This will make creativity a habit.

7. When interest is present for all involved, you can learn content at a much faster rate. Be interested and figure out how to get your kids interested too.

8. Sometimes kids are not ready for the next math (you can insert any subject here) concept in their book. Don’t stop there and drill and kill the natural fascination of numbers (or anything else) out of them. Move on and then revisit and then move on then revisit ad infinitum…eventually they will get it, and in the meantime, they will have picked up a lot of other concepts.

9. Some kids need to see the big picture before details fall in to place and make sense. Some need to see and understand all the details before they can get the big picture. This is why overviews at the beginning of any concept, and reviews at the end can make such a big difference in how much learning is retained.

10. Learning is often seamless and easy when we get out of the way. But sometimes you should get in the way and make it hard. Learning to do hard stuff is important. Learning to break the barrier between “I can’t do it!” and “Remember when I couldn’t do it?” is so important. Teaching kids to be brave in learning and push past their own perceived boundaries is an essential life skill.

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