Today is a guest post from Meghan. Meghan is a Missionary serving in Ghana, West Africa. She is mother of two through adoption and cofounder/exectutive director of Family First – Ghana. You can find her writing on her blog Lemons, Limes and Laughter <http://lemonslimesandlaughter.com> or posting photos on instagram @meglidds <http://www.instagram.com/meglidds>
5 tips for Christian homeschooling Mama’s
Our journey to Christian homeschooling began right after my youngest daughter was diagnosed with TB. Because of the medical treatment we knew keeping both girls home would be best for not only their education but for their health. The treatment often times has similar side effects as chemo and knew there was no way we could manage school schedules and treatment. It was incredibly overwhelming at the start. Now almost a year later I can’t imagine choosing a different route. Here are some tips I have learned along the way.
1. Begin your day with Jesus.
The best decision I made was to start each morning in prayer with the girls. After breakfast, we grab our school stuff and do a short bible reading, small activity and prayer. On the days, their tutor comes we try to incorporate the lessons he will be teaching into our prayers and activities. So if we are working on shapes we will print out a bible scene and identify shapes etc. This not only transitions them in a school setting but it also teaches them the importance and benefits of starting the day committed to God.
2. Don’t compare your journey with others.
Homeschooling was intimidating when we first started. I found myself comparing to other families and overwhelming myself with resources and materials. It’s good to do your research and find out what works for others.. BUT… your kids are your kids and you know them best. Spend a while working through different methods to find which benefits your child the most. You don’t need to read every blog , every curriculum and certainly there is nothing wrong with supplementing with lessons you find beneficial. Take it one day at a time, find attainable goals and work on ways to get your kiddos where you want in your time frame. The goal is learning and tapping into your children’s gifts.
3. Incorporate daily tasks into your curriculum.
For some families chores are such a fight with kids. Each day after lunch break each child has one “Lifestyle “ task assigned to them. It could be sweeping the bedroom or washing window or sometimes helping with dishes. Other days we spend 30 mins learning to cook using our spelling and reading skills to sound out ingredients while also teaching a life skill. A child cannot live on jollof alone.
4. Don’t forget to take care of yourself.
Jesus says “ Come to me all who are weary and I shall give you rest” Don’t forget to give yourself the care and rest you need. As parents more specifically mothers we feel guilty for leaving or taking time for ourselves. It is so important especially if you are a homeschooling mom who spends the majority of your day being a mom and a teacher! It’s ok to take an evening off by ordering pizza or hiring a babysitter for a quiet moment at a coffee shop.
5. Have Fun!
Some of the best lessons we’ve created were games, art activities and adventures. The more outside time the better. We focus on using what is around us to learn. Nature walks can include spelling, science etc. Hop scotch word finds have caused some outrageous laughter while also empowering a kid to learn sight words successfully. Don’t be afraid to try something new or make it into a game. Children learn best by playing.