So, I discovered a LOT of things to NOT do this term if I want to enjoy this home education journey.
- Do not overtask me: I can only spend my time one way. I must seek God’s will for my schedule. Because I am a people-loving introvert, I need to see people often, but I also need to make sure to have a little time every day in which I am alone. Otherwise, I feel very overwhelmed.
- All education is self-education. My students have their own abilities, desires, faults, and deficiencies. While batch education is easier, each of us needs slight personal variations.
- Do not expect more than my child can give. Those relationships are of eternal importance. Quickly finishing up a math page right this minute is not. Try to call an end to a lesson while it is still tolerable. If frustration is building, take a break.
- Expect the best effort. Model giving my best effort as I go about my day. Perfection is a goal as we try to be like Jesus, but we expect only our Best Effort for our current circumstances. Remember that the standard of Best Effort is fluid. I must inspect what I expect often so that course corrections can be made
- Do not compare. All children are persons. All persons are different. Therefore, all children are different. Adults don’t do things at the same rate or the same way. Why would we expect children to?
- Summer is a great time to put chore, laundry, and mealtime systems in place to grow the habits of all involved. These adults that I am raising must know how to wash dishes, clean, mow, launder, and vacuum. Those chores are a built-in class in Adulting.
- Do not overtask my kids. While sports, music lessons, etc. are all good, you must leave time for Masterly Inactivity: Nature Study, Artistic Exploration, Handicrafts and Life Skills, Creative Projects. Charlotte Mason says (quite rightly: “Boys and girls must have time to invent episodes, carry on adventures, live heroic lives, lay sieges and carry forts, even if the fortress be an old armchair; and in these affairs, the elders must neither meddle nor make. They must be content to know that they do not understand, and, what is more, that they carry with them a chill breath of reality which sweeps away illusions.”
- Do not feel guilty. Only Jesus can be everything to everybody. God created these boys and gave them to me. He knows what I am capable of and what they are capable of. He will inspire me towards what is right if I ask Him to do that.
I am enough for these boys.
And you are enough for your crew.