What homeschooling essentials must you absolutely, without a doubt, 100% sure need if you’re going to homeschool? Kids, of course!
You might think, “Well, sure! Of course! That’s a little obvious, don’t ya think?” Well, yes. Yes of course it’s obvious that the most important of homeschooling essentials would be the kids. You must have someone you’re intending to homeschool, or you wouldn’t be thinking about it. I’ve a few things I want to point out about what this really and truly means – what it means for you as a homeschooling parent, and what it means for your kids.
Kids Will Be Kids
Kids are restless, and loud, and dirty. Kids, by human nature, are selfish. They are naive, don’t always remember their manners, and sometimes “miss” cues that we consider natural (if only because we’ve been doing them for so long that we forget they were learned practices). Kids have a tendency to only want to do what they want to do, only want to have fun, and a resistance to effort. They have a natural desire to be moving and shaking, using every part of their bodies and brains to absorb and learn about the world around them. And, for us adults (especially those who aren’t used to being around this behavior constantly, day in and day out), it can become quite overwhelming!
I’ve been homeschooling for almost 8 years now, and I can tell you that I’ve learned as much or more than the kids. Now, some of that is academic because I have the chance to teach certain subjects in the way I wish I’d been taught. But, so much of it isn’t about what I’ve learned academically but what I’ve learned about life, and about myself, and about my kids. So many people have told me over the years that they couldn’t homeschool because they don’t have the patience. Guess what? When I started out, neither did I. Patience was the first thing I learned. And it wasn’t an easy lesson.
There are many things I considered choosing for the first essential. Heart issues, all of them: patience, love for your kids, recognition when you’ve messed up and it’s time to start over, forgiveness both for your kids and for yourself, time to adjust, well-behaved kids, and so many more. And then I recognized that, when I started homeschooling, I didn’t have any of those. Sure, I have them now (at least most of them, and for the most part), but to be perfectly honest most of those things in myself and in my home have come from homeschooling. They aren’t why I was able to homeschool my kids; they are the benefits of doing so.
So what are the homeschooling essentials we all need? School supplies, a place to study and instruct, good books, maybe some core curriculum items, ways to have fun and let your kids be who they are and still generate a learning environment. I’ll discuss all of these things, and probably more, throughout the week.
But, the most important homeschooling essentials are the kids. Always remember that. You’re doing it for the kids, for their growth and development and education and benefit. The kids themselves are the most important aspect of homeschooling, and it will look different for every child. It might not be easy, especially at first, but you will get to know your kids better. They will learn, they will grow in all areas of their life… and so will you. The most important homeschooling essential is to recognize as the parent that kids will be kids, and it is your God given assignment, right, and privilege to guide them. Put your heart where it needs to be, and everything else is gravy.
I’m blessed to be writing this series in conjunction with my new friends on the TOS Schoolhouse Review Crew! Please take a moment to comment here and let me know you’re reading, and then please visit a few of my friends who are also participating. Everyone will have their own take on what Homeschooling Essentials really include and mean. That’s the beauty of homeschooling, in that we each do it in our own way, and many of us homeschool a little differently even with our own kids. It’s about freedom.
Laura @ Day by Day in Our World
Julie @ Nurturing Learning
Lisa @ Farm Fresh Adventures
Lori @ At Home: where life happens
Nicole @ Journey to Excellence
Adriana @ Homeschool Ways
Brandy @ Kingdom Academy Homeschool
Meg @ Adventures with Jude
Sarah @ Delivering Grace