Teach the Children

Kids PicWhy wasn’t she moving faster? Didn’t she understand that I wanted her to get through the material in the next half hour? I really wanted to get through this part of our day so we could move on to other things. It really shouldn’t have taken this long. (I was thinking.) Then, the Lord hit me full on… was I teaching the curriculum or was I teaching my children? Oops; guilty as charged!

I think, sometimes, we homeschool parents can get caught up in the wonderful resources we have available to us. We ooh and aah over new-found books, get excited about special projects, and store up on awesome resources. In all our enthusiasm, I wonder if we have completely forgotten why we do what we do.

Are we getting caught up in buying resources which seem wonderful and pushing our children through the motions without bothering to ask ourselves if this is helping our children actually learn or, even if they are learning, if they are enjoying the learning process?

Heaven forbid I force my children through hours of lessons every single day just so I can say I finished a book we purchased. Lord help me if I am pushing my kids to finish materials in a certain amount of time simply because I have other plans for the day. Shame on me!

Now, don’t get me wrong! In our learning, we most certainly have a wide arrangement of resources available to us and I highly recommend using them to the fullest. However, I just need to be careful that the resources are being used as a help and not as the driving force behind my children’s education.

Ultimately, I don’t want my children to simply learn how to finish a book (although that is a good skill to be learned). I want my children to love learning! I need my children to fully understand the world in which they live and the impact the Lord wants them to make in their own sphere of His creation.

The books, games, projects, and field trips we have before us can be used wonderfully in each of our learning endeavors. I just want to be careful of how I am putting them to use. At the end of the day, if the only thing my kids did was push through a stack of paperwork so I can say we were productive, I have failed in my job. Getting through the books isn’t the goal! The goal is to teach my children, to reach their hearts, to minister to their souls, and to encourage a love of learning.

I need to make sure I am teaching my children and not merely the curriculum!

Time to Chime In: Have you ever found yourself in the middle of a lesson and suddenly realized this was not working?! How did you redirect your learning to be more productive for your children?


12 thoughts on “Teach the Children

  1. A very important part of homeschooling and the luxury we have as homeschooling mothers who are in tune with their children. I believe sometimes my child just needs brain breaks and we have a exercise trampoline he jumps on to get the oxygen flowing to the brain again…. It works wonders… As an auditiory learner, if something isn’t connecting, I search Youtube and find an appropriate video on the subject. Adapting and creating a truly individualized plan is why I chose to homeschool.


  2. This is why we are very, very relaxed homeschoolers. I’ve been doing this for about 18 years now, and I realized a long time ago that I needed to spend more time enjoying my kids and less time focused on being the perfect homeschooling mom. I find the amount of resources and classes to be overwhelming and a distraction- I’m all about keeping it simple. It’s great to have choices and options, but learning can still be a relatively simple endeavor. In fact I’ve been spending days looking at curriculum (for the first time in a long time) and ultimately decided to just use what we have, explore more free online resources, and go to the library.


  3. Bummer, I left a comment but it didn’t post! Something similar happened to me this summer. As a “newbie” homeschooler I got way too wrapped up in curriculum and was oblivious to the fact that it’s not his style at all! We took a much-needed summer break and just started up again. I used that time to really understand his learning style and figuring out how to adapt what I’d already purchased to it. So far, things are going sooo much better! I love having time with him to be able to really try and understand him and how he learns.


  4. I’m the nervous one; my daughter is much more relaxed. And when friends ask how I know my grandchildren are keeping up with others… I have to keep myself from worrying.

    The fact is, I gave up on my samsung tablet – it aggravated me too much. I bought an iPad mini and I LOVE IT. But my point is… last week my 11-year old grandson came over to show me his schedule… it looked professionally done. Then he showed me his tasks… wonderful. He might not excel at math (his only weak subject) but he seems much more advanced than the other children we see at church and activities.

    No more worries for me.


  5. Good thoughts here. I was homeschooled k-12 and I think my mom often made plans for me based on what had worked well for my older sister. Makes sense, except that we had completely different learning styles and I had ADD while she did not. I would often get very frustrated with tasks that would take me hours and hours to complete (sometimes 8am to 8pm with breaks only for lunch and dinner… I wish I were kidding) that just weren’t working for me. I do not think that she understood why I could not focus or how to help. I don’t blame her for that, but it’s refreshing to see someone staying attuned to their kids in home education. That is, after all, how it should be!

    Don’t get me wrong; I eked a great education out of it in the end. But I can’t stress how important this is to keep in mind. Individual kids need individual learning, and the best curriculum won’t change that. It’s something that I will surely keep in mind if I should ever choose to homeschool my own children.


  6. What a great thought – are we teaching curriculum or are we teaching children? I think that is a problem all educators face – and one that can be difficult to manage. Your question is the same one we have been having in my staffroom recently. Fingers crossed we can find a solution that puts our learners first.


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