Would you like to know what drives me crazy? One of those sites about Christian homeschooling that shows you how perfect it is. I see site after site that shows it’s readers an unrealistic glimpse into the life of a homeschool family.
Let me set the stage:
You have a photo of the children sitting perfectly – (dressed, teeth brushed, reading &/or writing with no sign of fighting or problems) – around the kitchen table. You see the homemade jam in the background. All of mom’s friends have no problems and neither does she. They have apparently all reached a place in their spiritual growth where there is nothing left for God to work out in them.
What they don’t show you is that the photo was staged. The children were most likely told they could play on their Wii if they sat still long enough to take the photo. The phone has been ringing off the hook; mom’s hair is still in rollers; the cat just made the pile of laundry fresh out of the dryer into his litter box and dad will be home any minute because it took 9 hours to get to the point they could take the photo.
I didn’t even get started with the struggles of teaching the children!
I know that this is an exaggeration – well, sort of – and it is very possible to have a productive and very successful homeschool. Really! The point of all this is that too many people only show you the good and never show you the bad.
I have had my share of good and bad days and I am sure there will be more ahead. That is life. If it isn’t a friend or neighbor in need it is the curriculum or behavior/discipline issues or maybe a headache. God never said that we would have it easy. That is why the butterfly’s chrysalis is such an important symbol of our ministry.
In our process of transformation we go through stages that lead us closer and closer to the likeness of Christ. But that chrysalis time is a messy time. It is also a necessary time if we are to transform.
Don’t give up on homeschooling just because right now it feels overwhelming. Take time out with God, let Him refresh you and guide you in homeschooling. Always remember: A bad day homeschooling for God, is always better then a good day when you are not. A perfect day is one where you don’t give up on God!
If you are one of the millions of people who love to scrapbook or would like to give it a try, why not make it a part of your homeschooling?
Even if you are not artistically inclined, scrapbooking can be a fun way to add arts and crafts to your child’s lessons.
There is a never ending variety of ways to incorporate scrapbooking with your curriculum.
You may even find you’ve found a new hobby for yourself. (I warn you, it is addictive!).
If you are like me, you save photos and mementos from all the important (and even some not as important) events in your families lives.
Photos, award ribbons, certificates,drawings, and letters all kept in nice little boxes waiting to be looked at.
Why not take out that cherished painting your child made and place it with the photo you took of him trying to clean up his paint covered body afterwards?
Add a few lines to keep the “I made it just for you” always fresh in your mind.
Homeschooling provides us with extra opportunities to make and keep memories. You can even use scrapbooks as part of your curriculum record folder.
After seeing me have all the fun, my 10 year old son decided he wanted to scrapbook too. But instead of doing family photos, we decided to make it part of his lessons.
Every time we study a culture or a topic in history, we create a page in our Passport Scrapbook. The first pages are all about him. His photo, finger prints, birth date and so on. The next pages are saved as the index so you can quickly find what you are looking for. Then, each topic has a few images or a drawing plus some background info on the topic. We use stickers and stamps, colored papers, homemade papers and anything else we can think of. But that is only one way to use scrapbooking.
A step by step guide to home schooling
More and more people are deciding to take the education of their children into their own hands. Home schooling potentially gives each child the opportunity to learn using the methods and pace which best suits his/her needs. As parents, we are our children’s first and most important teachers. Why not continue on that path for the rest of their education? I know at first all this seemed so complicated, at least it did to me. I had a school telling me it wasn’t legal for me to homeschool and another school telling me I had to sign up through them. I had to figure my own way around for the first year or so and my hope is that with just a little time and energy on your part, this list will spare you from a long drawn out process.
An Old Fashion Education is (according to their site) a directory of free homeschool curriculum. It is also one of my personal favorite sites. I can almost always find a resource through them. Their list of subjects is comprehensive and easy to use.
Not only are individual subjects plus complete curricula resources available, but they also have 40 week lesson guides for each grade level. You can teach your children practically for free! This is one homeschool resource no family should be without.
Ambleside is a free curriculum, schedule/guide, and book list. It was birthed from the Charlotte Mason educational philosophies. You should have an understanding of Mason’s vision if you decide to go this route.
Ambleside has her original and the modern English version of her works available for free online. (http://amblesideonline.org/CM/toc.html)