One of my favorite real-life authors is Tricia Goyer. She’s real, she’s beautiful, she’s an amazing professional, and she’s as close to supermom as I’ve ever seen. And seriously, she’s just about the nicest person you’d ever want to meet. So when she invited me into her corner of the world to talk about Homeschool Made Easy and how we can really, truly do this… well, it’s a treat. Because truth of the matter is, this is one woman who gets it, because she lives it every day. So take a couple minutes to join the conversation over there and to enter the giveaway for my new book. And then glean more from her wisdom on homeschooling in real life right here. You’ll be blessed.
I’ve been homeschooling most of my life – first as a homeschool student myself, and now as a homeschool mother of four. Now that I’m graduating my oldest son, it’s a good time to look back and see what works and what doesn’t work. And you know what works? Easy. Easy works, hard doesn’t.
It seems obvious, but that’s not how I tend to operate much of the time. I seem to think that if I complicate things, if I work harder, if I make things more difficult for everyone, then homeschooling will be better. But it never is.
Instead, when I take it easy and relax – and when I let my children take it easy and have fun – everyone learns more. Homeschooling is a joy instead of a chore. It’s funny how that works.
There are 10 simple ways I have learned to make homeschooling easier. If I remember these tips, our homeschool days go smoothly. See if these are things you can use in your homeschool, too.
How to Make Homeschooling Easy
1) Throw out the teacher’s manual.
Most of the time, even for those intense high school subjects, it doesn’t do me much good to follow the teacher’s manual too closely. I start micromanaging my student, pressuring him to give the exact word-for-word scripted answer, and making him jump extra hoops to prove he knows the material. That takes all the joy out of lessons. Instead, I need to look up into my student’s eyes and speak into his heart the words of truth I need him to know.
2) Respect my own teaching style.
I don’t teach like you do, and you don’t teach like I do. Neither one of us teach exactly like the teacher’s manual authors do. And you know what? That’s great! We each have our own giftedness, our own special way of communicating truths to our students in meaningful ways. We need to teach with our strengths to be most effective – and to find the most joy in our homeschooling.
3) Make only useful lesson plans.
I used to think I had to make these detailed lesson plans and fill out all the boxes on the lesson planner to be a good homeschooler. Boy, was I wrong! That was such a waste of time! I was, once again, trying too hard to teach like someone else, not like the mom God created me to be. So now, I just write down the couple things I don’t want to forget (like the books to read aloud or concepts to talk about) and leave it at that. The lesson plan police haven’t incarcerated me yet!