Scratching your head at where to start? Advice given to me, that we followed, and have passed on to many.
In a Quiet Spot.
With a Notebook and Pencil.
Ask yourself, and the Lord, what He / You want from their education. Have you stopped to wonder if your kids should go to school? When they should start school? When formal lessons should begin, and why? Or is your child 3 or 5 and it’s ‘time’ because everyone else is in the pick up line at elementary school – or boarding that yellow bus? All your friends are talking about and ordering curriculum? If your answer starts with ‘someone else’, then it isn’t your plan.
Ask the Lord – What do you want for my children for learning?
How do you want them taught?
What do you want me to teach them?
How do you want me to be involved?
What resources should I use?
Guide me to scriptural truths to help me build a foundation.
What Lord, do you see at the mission for our family?
And wait. And breathe. And Rest. And have your pencil ready to move with the words and ideas that start sifting through your mind.
Tie a shoe. Ride a bike. Shake hands firmly. Look adults in the eye. Smile while in Worship. Wipe a table. Make clay soft enough before trying to use it to form an animal.
Now you’re sitting with your pencil wondering if these are just your thoughts or the Lords.
You know one crazy idea that came to me during one of these planning sessions? Teach Jonathan to safely climb a tree. I didn’t write it down. He was about 4. I let it go. A couple of months later? I found him in the top of the tallest tree in the back yard crawling from branch to branch to get to the next tree top. #ScariestDayEver. #Drat those neighbor kids who taught him that.
I was expecting the Lord to lay out an academic educational plan that would rival the east coast prep schools.
Each family is going to be different, each child is an individual. Your goals and the way you meet your goals will be different than mine. Parents work. Kids have special needs.
Ask God how He is going to provide for Your Individual Needs. Write that down. And then Trust Him.
As you can probably tell, I have two completely different boys. I can’t really do the same things for them. I pray about their character training. I try to listen to the Lord to hear what He wants to work on next. Usually, the boy himself will have an easy enough time sharing/showing me where he needs some guidance. Ha. I’ll work on a post sharing how we work on Character.
My biggest piece of advice, as mentioned above, is to be careful when your thoughts move to ‘someone else’. During this pencil to paper, You and God, You and your Husband, Your thoughts and your Child – just write what comes to mind.
Throughout the years, I have spent countless hours learning how to teach. Learning what is recommended to teach. I’ve read just about every book in the genre of “What your child needs to know when”. When they were younger, I used my findings as a loose outline to let me know if we were on the ‘right’ path academically. I still do that at grades 7 and 10. I keep a notebook of milestone that they cross over. It was a very detailed account in a 5 subject spiral bound book when they were in Kindergarten. Now, it’s a small 5×7 single subject cute book of an outline of the year.
We move along – doing the next thing, but I still get doubts. Wonder if what we are doing is right, especially if the whole town seems to be doing it a different way. And that’s when I pull out my paper. From when they were 2 and 5. And read what the Lord put on my heart. And pray over those words again. And ask if His direction has changed. So far – it has only been strengthened.