The official start to our school is in roughly two weeks. I look forward to the traditional breakfast out the first day of school. It usually is the holiday so daddy is home and we all go together. Then we come home and have our annual school supply treasure hunt. This year we have much less to buy for some reason. Maybe because we didn't do as much formal school this past year. My kids sure learned many other valuable lessons outside of academics last year. The biggest being a baby brother and another biggie....dad being gone 12-14 hours a day. He worked at home up to then so they were pretty bummed about that. Journey also learned how to clean the bathrooms and make lunch last year. All very valuable skills in my opinion.
Every year until this one I have spent HOURS planning our year out in great detail. Part of that is my personality and partly because I wanted to make sure they were getting all they needed in an education. This year, well, not so much. I am planning some. The more I do this the more I am learning to relax and take it not so seriously. Okay, now I know your thinking I am going down the wrong road here but give me a few more sentences to explain myself.
One of my best friends said to me the other day (Hi, if your reading!) that I am overly diligent. We're pretty honest with each other and I think we could all use a friend like that. Anyway, at first I thought wait a second...no I'm not. Then as I thought about it, yes I am. Being diligent is a good quality but being over diligent is like watering a dead plant. A dead plant doesn't need attention so move on to what does. I can plan all I want and should but really being prepared is about consistent training and being present with them. I also tend to have great expectations when I over invest. Not a good thing in most cases. So I have a plan for this next year for both my kids. But more then anything I have priorities. Something will inevitably come up this year and change what lesson we are on for a particular week. We will have to rearrange things which is okay. The last 4 years of this thing called homeschooling has taught me to stick to the priorities and not so much the plan.
This years priority is my son Isaac. We are facing many challenges only many fronts. So when all gets crazy this is where I will camp out. It is impossible to do it all, everyday with all your children, every year. If that is your expectation I'm pretty sure you will be disappointed. Now bare in mind that I am not going to send my 9 year old to the neighbours and leave the baby in his crib all day :o) in order to focus on Isaac. We will work toward the goals we've set out but I'm not pushing my son into a meltdown to get history done with my nine year old. Peace will carry much more value now and in the future then will knowing what year WW II started.
I am learning more and more that home educating isn't so much about ALL that they learn. It is more about learning how to learn, how to think and how to love God with all their hearts. They have a life time to learn whatever they want but they are only with me being guided and trained for a short while. May God give me the wisdom and grace as I endeavor to do that this year. Simplicity and not being militant mom pushing the schedule goes along way to help create opportunities for learning that you'd never find in a textbook.