Did You Have a Successful Homeschool Year?

Photo by Jude Beck on Unsplash
Relax and listen to this sweet tune as you ponder last year and plan for next year. Catch the light, upbeat feeling and feel the hope for a successful year in all the right ways.

Looking back on last year and assessing how it went is a good thing to do before planning next year’s homeschool.

When I look back on the year, some of the things I check for may surprise you.

These are some of the questions I ask myself to assess how well our homeschool year went:

  1. Did you spend time together as a family?
  2. Did your kids learn how to be more kind and considerate?
  3. Did your kids become more mature and less selfish?
  4. Did you get to know your children?
  5. Did they get to know you?
  6. Did you make memories?
  7. Did you enjoy the year?
  8. Did the kids enjoy the year?
  9. Did they make progress in important academic skills?
  10. Did your kids learn life skills such as cooking, cleaning, building, fixing things, and problem solving?
The best kind of homeschooling. Family spending time together and having fun. Making memories. Experiencing new things. Being outside together. Talking to each other. Sharing an adventure. This is Family Schooling! Photo by Daiga Ellaby on Unsplash

Even in a relaxed homeschool or in unschooling, I cover the main academic subjects. But I will not do them in a schoolish sort of way.

I will use methods that are more hands-on and interactive. And I will measure each activity to ascertain if it will really add to necessary knowledge or skills. And I will take into account the learning style and interests of each child. I don’t make them spend hours doing “school”. I let them learn many things naturally and use teachable moments profusely.

As you can see by the questions I use to determine the success of our homeschool year, I put more value and emphasis on personal development, character building, and relationship skills.

This is how I measure the success of our homeschool year.

So, considering the questions I posed above, Did You Have a Successful Homeschool Year?

Did you have a successful homeschool year?

Posted by Changed By Love on Thursday, June 6, 2019
Here’s the video I made about this topic!

Psalm 107:30 Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and He brought them to their desired haven.

Praying for you and your success,


We Are All Meant to Be Naturalists

We Are All Meant to Be Naturalists

Teach your children to notice the little details in nature. They will astound you with their powers of observation. They will ask questions that you don’t know the answer to, but you can find those answers together. This is the best, most natural kind of learning. Learning that sticks because they own it.

I took the above picture in my front yard. It was a very insignificant weed that hadn’t bloomed yet. Somehow it caught my eye. I leaned down and studied it. I realized that there was beauty here. I got my phone and took several pictures. When I saw the pictures, I was amazed at the beauty and intricacy in this weed that didn’t belong. That was here today and gone tomorrow just like the Bible talks about in Matthew 6:30.

This sort of discovery would be a perfect lead-in to an extemporaneous lesson about Matthew 6:30-33.

“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.”
Matthew 6:30-33 (The Message

I think this illustrates the importance of enabling our children to get out in nature often and encouraging them to explore, discover, observe, study, gather specimens, ask questions, use a magnifying glass, and make their own connections with nature and nature’s Creator.

Jesus Taught From Nature

Jesus used parables based on farming and nature to explain how the Kingdom of God works. We can use these same kinds of examples and “parables” to teach our children not only scientific facts but life lessons.

Consider the lilies… and the wildflowers and the weeds. And the birds and the butterflies and the trees. And even the rabbits, the squirrels and the guinea pigs!

God wants us to take care of the Earth. He gave us the responsibility of tending and guarding and keeping it when He told Adam to tend and keep it.

He loves His Creation. And He loves people, the crown of His Creation. We should be teaching our children to love and take care of His Creation.

I think that’s why Charlotte Mason said that we are all meant to be naturalists and to care about the marvels of Creation.

So go out and observe, cultivate, nurture, and take care of the Creation you encounter. You will honor God who made it, and your children will get to know Him and will be more in awe of Him than ever. His works are truly marvelous.

Teach your children to marvel and appreciate the beauty and majesty of Nature.

Bad Homeschool Day? Stop and Pray

Bad Homeschool Day? Stop and Pray

School’s out for lots of us. But we still have our kids with us every day just like we do during the school year. So the chance of a bad day may just increase with the change in routine.

Whether you school all year round or take a break in the summer, this is good advice, and I guarantee it will help.

This advice will actually help any day, any time. When things are not going well, either because of your own mood or other people’s behavior, stop and pray. You might need to reset your thinking. Or you might need to count to ten before speaking to your child. Or you may need to ask the Lord, “What should I do here”?

Your response could make all the difference in the world to your child or whoever you’re with. If you lash out in anger and impatience because of immature behavior or defiance, you will lose their trust, respect, and desire to listen to you.

When you consult the Lord about what to do or say, you are much more likely to act wisely and lovingly. He may tell you to take a break, switch activities, go outside, leave the house, or just hug and have a nice, calm talk with the child or children who are having a bad day.

The way that we respond is modeling for our children how to handle disagreements and conflict. And it is good to set the example of praying about everything. Even in the midst of a highly emotional altercation, if we can pause and grab the hand of the one we are at odds with and start praying, the atmosphere will change.

We can de-escalate a charged situation, and transform the mood to one of love and affection. Then we can do whatever is appropriate for the situation. We can go back to the activity that had been interrupted, or we can do something completely different.

This is a good method to use in any matter that you are unsure how to handle. Stop and ask the Lord, “What are You doing here?” Wait and listen to what He says to you. Then do it!

A while ago, I was having a hard time with my two youngest daughters. They were not obeying whenever I told them to do anything. I calmed myself down … uh hum… then I called them into my room. I prayed with them and told them I loved them.

What did I pray? I prayed that they would know how much I love them and that they would understand that I have to help them obey the Word, so that they will be blessed, and the family will operate smoothly. The Word says that children are to obey their parents and honor their father and mother. I prayed that God would help them to do that. Things were much better after that. They started obeying, and they seemed happier and more affectionate than before.

If you have a Bad Homeschool Day, Stop and Pray! Or any other time that you are uncertain what to do, stop and pray and find out what God would have you do. Most likely, He will turn something that was going in a bad direction into a blessed and beneficial experience for all involved.