by Autumn Scott
Defining the Objectives for Homeschooling
Why do we homeschool? . . . What do we hope to accomplish?
As families that homeschool, what we hope to accomplish isn’t always clear. There are so many things we can do that defining what is the most important goal for our homeschooling is difficult. You may even feel overwhelmed by it.
Here are some goals that all homeschooling families wish to accomplish:
- Rich Education
- Growth & Development in Character Qualities, Habits and Skills
- Family Experiences
- A Joy & Love for Learning
Let’s look at these four goals in-depth.
Many choose to homeschool for the wealth of opportunities of learning and freedom to move at the pace of their child. As we all know children do not develop at the same rate. Some kids are eager to learn at an early age and absorb everything in sight! Other children take more time as they are more interested in being outside and being active — these are your active learners.
Active learners may surprise you and though are a little slower to begin as a younger student may end up being your most curious child later on. These learners require more time and shouldn’t be pushed into learning if not ready — never fear they are learning a lot! Active learners will quickly catch-up. Giving them more freedom to learn at their pace will make them more excited to discover learning!
Now we mentioned freedom when talking about active learners, this is the best part of homeschooling! You can often choose what to study based on the interests of your children. A more interested student will remember more about what they learned and be excited to tell others what they’ve learned. What a rich opportunity for your child!
You as a parent also have the ability to have your student progress faster through topics they understand. If they are struggling with a topic then you can spend more time on it.
This flexibility makes for every moment your student is learning more rich and rewarding for them and for you! They will remember more of what they’ve been taught and know how to use what they’ve learned practically. It will also nurture a spirit to learn new things and grow as a person.
This makes for an easy transition to our next goal for homeschooling but before we do I want to briefly touch on the subject of the parent — you! As the main parent for homeschooling you may feel ill-equipped to teach. You may feel that since you don’t have a teaching degree nor have you ever taught before that you won’t be able to homeschool. You probably know that certain subjects are not your strong-suit.
So what do you do? You mustn’t feel that you need to know all the subjects and understand them completely to teach your children. Part of homeschooling is discovering together! If you kids see you learning along with them that will inspire them to learn more as well. Beside you will have more joy in learning yourself when you’re learning and discovering just like your child.
Growth & Development in Character Qualities, Habits and Skills
Homeschooling also makes possible character growth. You know your child’s weaknesses but what about the things they could grow in — like patience, leadership, sharing, and helpfulness. Or if they struggle with lying or laziness. These are just some of the parts of you child’s character that you can talk about and help them grow in. You can also tailor your learning to help and challenge them to grow in these areas.
You also talk about good habits — oftentimes good habits are learned along the way as you homeschool. Students learn disciple to get their work done and done well. You can also help them to learn to ask questions and communicate when they’re confused or frustrated when they are not understanding a task. Another good habit to have them learn is helping to complete chores around the home. This is a great help to you and it will make their free-time all the more valuable to them once they’ve completed their work.
More time together as a family has many benefits. Your kids will learn more ways to get along with each other and share. Your children will learn to help each other without being told — they’ll help on their own. They will play together more and take their learning to their play. They may build a western fort in the backyard after learning about the American West!
Yes they’ll create these too — and with you! You will have experiences and moments you’ll never forget and neither will your children. Take them on a nature walk and bring some fun snacks. Visit the beach before the school year and get the kids excited for next year’s school with some nature observing. These memories and fun family experiences will inspire kids to discover!
As your children get older this desire to learn will only increase and they will soon be doing it all on their own! It is a must to encourage!
A Joy & Love for Learning
We’ve touched on a couple times how homeschooling develops a joy and love for learning. This is essential to homeschooling. So many kids just try to hurry through learning and hate it; there is no joy! This is one of the saddest things to witness in a child. There is some much to discover and explore about our world and our history. We can learn much from our past and grow to appreciate all the Lord has created in looking at his creation.
Nothing should hinder or stop the student from developing a love for learning. If this requires going slower or going faster or skipping something altogether(and covering later) then do it! Your child will grow to appreciate the things they don’t like as much through their love and interest in other subjects.
Every day focus on inspiring your children to learn and discover. Help them to learn also how to do it on their own. This is an essential tool that they will use all the time when they are older. When they are young participate with them in this discovery as they grow they will become more and more independent in their learning. This is a priceless gift to the child and yourself for what is more rewarding to see than your kids’ excitement when they learn something on their own!