Do You Know the Secret to a Successful Homeschool?
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a successful homeschool and one that fails?
There’s actually only a small difference between the two. And it’s not how gifted your kids are. It’s not how educated you are.
It’s something else entirely.
The secret to a successful homeschool is small. It’s tiny. And it’s called diligence.
I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to have the brightest kids, the most rigorous homeschool, or spend hours beating declensions into little heads.
No, you simply need a simple homeschool plan. And to sit down and follow it consistently. With diligence.
Now, this isn’t as easy as it seems.
You’ll have days you wake up after being up all night with a fussy toddler. Your head is aching, your eyes are heavy, and you’d adore curling up and sleeping for a few more hours.
Diligence means you get up, you start the day, and you sit down with the kids and get the homeschool rolling.
You build the habit of doing school diligently despite all else.
And your day can be short, consisting simply of reading for 30 minutes and completing a math lesson.
It’s the diligence to get up and homeschool that counts.
The Difference Between Diligent and Not Diligent
Let’s face it. Sometimes kids don’t reach calculus in high school. But were you diligent about completing math on a regular basis?
Let’s look at a diligent household:
In a diligent household, you and your child are sitting down to do math every day.
You work problems.
You repeat concepts as necessary to ensure your child’s understanding of math. And you keep moving.
You and your child apply the principle of your seat to the chair and complete the lessons.
Slow and surely you make progress.
You are diligent.
What about in a non-diligent household?
In a non-diligent household, you keep skipping lessons because the sun is shining. The kids should be playing outside all day instead of inside completing a math lesson.
Now it’s raining. It’s gloomy and you just don’t feel up to homeschooling today.
A cool field trip came up. The family came to visit. A cold came through town.
And then you discover your child is falling behind in math.
You are not diligent.
When you’re homeschooling, you should worry about how far you’ll get. After all, not all kids are mathematical geniuses or love writing the all-American novel, and that’s okay.
But you should worry about being diligent.
Sitting down to educate your kids. Doing the work. Following the plan.
After all, some kids love writing novels but would prefer to avoid math. Other children adore mathematics but hate putting words on paper. Some kids are well-balanced, some kids struggle, and some kids soar.
That’s the beauty of homeschooling. We’re able to adjust our plans and tutor our kids as individuals.
The secret of a successful homeschool is to sit down and do the work. And no amount of chatter about don’t worry, all kids will get there is going to change that.
Diligence is a critical part of homeschooling.
It’s the part that brings everything else together.
Take a look at what Brandy at After Thoughts post titled I Am, I Can, I Ought, I Will says.
After all, what’s the point of finding inspirational poetry, soaring sonatas, beautiful artwork, and great books to enjoy with your kids if you never actually sit down to enjoy the works together?
You can create wonderful plans, but if the plans never get put into motion, why homeschool?
Your homeschool is at a standstill.
That being said, we all fail at this sometimes.
There are times life gets crazy and chaotic. Those times when four children are competing for the toilet during a round of stomach flu. Times when the house has been torn apart due to remodeling. Times when you need to focus on family and friends who need you.
So, create a Plan B and Plan C for those times. Or as I like to think of them, yellow and red days.
You’ll find there are times it’s best to focus on the basics. And there are times the homeschool stops because of outside forces.
But be cautious of throwing your homeschool to the winds every time life gets a bit crazy though.
Life is crazy and Uncle Murphy loves to come calling.
So use wisdom and your conscience to know if it’s truly a time to stop homeschooling or if you’re simply not being diligent about your homeschool.
Give yourself grace and build the habit of diligence.
And give your children the gift of a successful homeschool.
We are just getting started in homeschooling, but I instinctively feel that what you are saying about cautioning against letting life’s hurdles derail your homeschool. We are in the middle of a quick, unexpected move, but since we are just starting out, I am making it a point to carve out time to make sure essentials are done every day with my little man. I am afraid if we keep putting off the start, we will never get going.
Carving out time for the essentials is an excellent start! I’ve never regretted spending time making certain the kids are reading, writing, and doing some math every day. I hope the move goes smoothly for you, Sarah. 🙂
In Latin diliges means love. I think there is something to linking our hard work with what we love – especially those of us who are homeschooling. It isn’t just doing the work – it is doing it out of love and with love. I really needed Brandy’s message this week and you have continued the call to keep going (even when the baby was up half the night). I need to remember that diligence isn’t just checking things off but done well it is showing love to my kids by following through on what I know I ought to do.
I love this thought, Missy! Being diligent in our housekeeping and homeschooling is showing love to our families. Thank you for sharing. 🙂
I love that thought too!
Thanks, Carol! 🙂
Diligence is integral! Our children are not going to hold us accountable to what needs to be done. We need diligence to commit to our plans and to carry them out!
Thanks for sharing (and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop).
Wishing you a lovely day.
That’s the problem with kids. If we’re not accountable, they certainly won’t be! Diligence makes a big difference. Making the plan and actually following through with it. 🙂
Diligence is a great word. I love how you have used it as a counter balance to those who would misinterpret the idea of scholé to mean laziness.
So good! Thanks for saying this. I love hearing about schole because I am naturally inclined to push too hard, but this is such a good reminder of why balance is so important! This is helpful as I talk to others about this concept, too! 🙂
Thanks, Cat Wise! 🙂
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