Do NOT Try Homeschooling. Part 2

Homeschooling - Gustoff family in Des Moines 020
Homeschooling – Gustoff family in Des Moines

If “trying” really means aiming at success, then, how to succeed really is the question. Let’s consider some of the sayings that belong to real success in home schooling. You may be surprised.

First, we do not want to do what some moms do, which is merely to take a stab at it. For these moms, it is not well-thought-out at all.

They just “give it a whirl”.

They do not pray.

They do not ask their husbands.

They do not research.

Remember this maxim:

Education is preparing your child for life.

It is not a hobby. It is more important than a new nail polish color, not something you try out and then abandon. It is nothing less than a life decision. In these days, many are beginning to call it a life-and-death decision.


Home schooling is not about curriculum.

Yes, you probably need curriculum, (although some do fine without), but you can visit with hundreds of families at any home school convention, and you will find thousands of folks succeeding, while using every imaginable curriculum made.

For instance, any child who is ready to learn to read can do so with almost any decent phonics curriculum.

Sure, there may be only one company “out there” perfectly able to meet your needs or style.

Yes, you probably need to shop with an unbiased veteran a time or two.

Still, as far as all the proven curriculum companies go, they are proven. Do not continually put on and take off curriculum until it is too late to accomplish anything. That is not trying to succeed at home schooling; it is merely trying, and at the wrong goal, at that.

I repeat, it is not about curriculum; trying on curriculum is not the same as home schooling.

One other surprising truth about home schooling is:

Usually, it is easy to do well without trying very hard.

For many, it is a little like falling out of bed, actually. The simple fact that the children are at home, instead of out on their own, will make them smarter. Yes, the act of being at home, by itself, will make your children smarter.

Of course, we want them to learn as much as possible, and we will take every opportunity to ensure that this is happening, but bringing them home, in and of itself, makes worlds of difference. They will no longer feel forced to waste mental energy on peer pressure, self-preservation, and competitiveness. They will be able to relax and the elimination of great stress will free them to excel.

Then there is the other side of it: they will have much, much less to un-learn.

Often our children at home seem accidentally to learn more than we expected, solely because they are in a more learning-conducive setting. It is much like osmosis.

This is, I admit, a lot of re-arranging to wrap our thinking around.

Do think about it, though.

More mottos, tomorrow.


Photo credit:

Published by Katharine

Katharine is a writer, speaker, women's counselor, and professional mom. Happily married over 50 years to the same gorgeous guy. She loves cooking amazing homegrown food, celebrating grandbabies, her golden-egg-laying hennies, and watching old movies with popcorn. Her writing appears at Medium, Arkansas Women Bloggers, Contently, The Testimony Train, Taste Arkansas, Only in Arkansas, and in several professional magazines and one anthology.

18 thoughts on “Do NOT Try Homeschooling. Part 2

  1. I agree wholeheartedly that the husband should be on board, whether that means teaching directly, or just supporting…it doesn’t matter. We are so blessed to have the freedom at this time in our country’s history to home educate our children!

    1. YES. We still, somehow, manage to retain this freedom, although throughout the world, governments are clamping down on it, needing so badly to pre-program their citizens beginning at age 3 or so. The very real threat to us, though, still rages on in D.C. and in various state capitals.
      We owe that feedom to the never-tiring work of Home School Legal Defense Association, by the way. We’d all have sunk years ago, without them!
      Thanks, as always, for your comments! 😉

  2. Well, THAT was ridiculously encouraging! 😀 I’m at that intersection of “Holy Cow, School Starts SOON!” and “I’m Only Half-Organized!” But hey – I’m doing more than trying. Home schooling is awesome. I love it. I really, really do. Thanks for that reminder and such a lovely boost!

    1. You are so welcome! So glad I could help! 🙂
      Your homeschool is so young yet . . . And mine was ancient even when I started, because I’d been practicing in my head for seven YEARS, until our state got safer for it! 😉 The schools, where we lived, had convinced me I could do almost ANYTHING in my home and beat their results, hands down. Sad, but true.
      Anyway, what I learned most in our adventure was that kids are programmed for absorbing during kidhood, and they will absorb whatever is before them. And if we protect and/or prevent their excursions to the outside world, the rest is a given. They are truly GIGO, 100%. 😯

  3. I love your post! My daughter has been attending a half day school program. I spend most of my time when she is home educating her. I set up my own reading program and had her reading by her third birthday. We also work on math and a big part of her math time is learning how to save and spend money the smart way. I would love to hear any ideas you have.

  4. Hello, Lyberty, and welcome to Home’s Cool!
    Thanks for stoppng here, and commenting! This site has many ideas about home schooling which may or may not be helpful to you. You can find article by topic when you use the search engine at the top-right of this page. You are welcome to read around at Home’s Cool!
    I wonder how old your daughter is and why you have her in a school situation, plus what you would like ideas about. I home schooled for a quarter century, so it would be hard to guess which of my ideas you’d need! 😆
    Please visit here any time you wish — I think you will find next week’s posts especially interesting! See ya! 🙂

    1. My daughter is about to turn five. She is an only child and we were the first of our friends to have children. We opted to put her in school so she could meet other children. I work the graveyard so I need sleep in the mornings and in the afternoons she is home while I telecommute for my other company. I would love to get some insight on helping her with her math skills. Would it be ok to email so we can talk in more detail?

  5. I took the kids to the dentist the other day. Very nice man, but he asked about their school. Then, of course, the homeschooling came up, and he told me that homeschooling took lots of discipline, organization, knowledge of curriculum, planning, etc. I just got my children’s ITBS scores back and they scored well above average–beyond the performance of the average private school in my area. And one of them was taking the test out-of-level and the other takes classes at the community college (he’s 12).

    I did a lot of smiling and nodding, and then I thought of how disorganized and far from knowledgeable I can be and laughed in my head.

    We’ve been taught by the world that there are experts and we have to leave things to the experts if we know what’s good for us. Nonsense. Experts. Bah.

    1. Girl, you’ve been reading my mail! I’ll be writing about amateurs before long. 🙂 It’s a fun piece! In the meantime, who, tell me WHO, is an expert at being a mom? A mom is, of course. And the educating of the children belongs to the mom, who is the expert at what her children need. It’s we who are the experts! Just keep smiling and nodding. 😉

      1. I solemnly promise I’m not 😉 I do believe in listening to what experts have to say, but I feel it is important to weigh whatever merit there may be in the information before buying it. The funny thing is, many people who are experts in one thing (engineering) will assume they are experts in everything. A friend tried homeschooling and her husband tried to lay out a schedule for her to follow in minute detail–because he was the engineer! The kids quickly returned to school (as I understand). My husband is an engineer, and thankfully knows better than to dominate my sphere of the household. 😉

        1. I love when my husband helps, but it’s mainly because I can see the difference it makes in the children, NOT because it’s lots of help. I mean, the FACT of his helping helps a lot with the kids’ attitudes, although he just notices their work and comments.
          Oh, and he teaches the heavy math. 😉

          1. Oh…I like help from my husband, I just wouldn’t like or accept it if he gave me explicit marching step-by-step orders with regard to the kids and the curriculum. Anymore than I would tell him what to do at his job or on fixing the car. 🙂 It is a matter of trust. He trusts me to get the job done and it gets done 😉

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