when does the homeschool really begin?

Did you begin homeschooling this year?

Here are four things you need to consider when beginning homeschooling:

Your goal is to consider what an education is anyway and read about unschoolingdeschooling, and learning. They’ll all give you peace and perspective in how you homeschool no matter your approach.

I compiled a Homeschool Mama Reading List just for you! These books are ones that have taught me everything that has helped me structure my homeschool.

when does the homeschool begin

I’m pretty certain I’ll never completely settle on a homeschool philosophy.

I am my own living proof. I’ve read from opposite ends of the spectrum and they all seem to have valid points, valid reasons for understanding the world the way they do.

Despite reading a lot, I often default to my natural, unhealthy tendencies when the kids are fighting again, over something I deem inane, or when someone is excessively sharp with another, or trying to bug another… No matter how much reading, how much persuasion or reasoning, I don’t always learn the lessons I need to learn (or just read in a book). Somedays it feels like I’ll never totally learn what I need to learn. Curiously, I’ve felt that way about my kiddos some days too.

But what I used to think they most needed to learn no longer seems important, nor does it seem the most difficult to grasp. It isn’t book-related learning, or knowledge-based learning, or stuff that can be tested on a multiple choice exam that they need to learn. When you spend most of your time with your children, you realize that what they most need to learn is how to be in the world and how to relate to oneself and others.

And, aiy, this is the least exciting subject for mom to teach!

So when does an education begin? The moment they exit the womb…and the lessons continue to infinity and beond (cause I don’t know about you, but at aged 47, I’m still learning them).

Learning to share, learning to consider the other person, being honest even when there might be a consequence, showing gentleness even when frustrated, taking care to listen when you’re being spoken to, learning to identify your feelings, listening to other’s feelings, addressing your underlying feelings and requiring other’s to be respectful of them…these lessons set the foundation for the little heart to take in all that knowledge-based stuff.

This learning enables those little ones to relate to each other, to know how to build and maintain friendships, maybe one day have healthy marriages and children of their own. This learning teaches them to work hard, to organize and multi-task, to pursue things fearlessly with independence and initiative, and to keep going when things are difficult.

So a real education doesn’t begin at the tender age of five, the preschool age of four, or the official first grade. A real education begins with a parent who loves her child enough to imprint all this learning.

“Thought breeds thought; children familiar with great thoughts take as naturally to thinking for themselves as the well-nourished body takes to growing; and we must bear in mind that growth, physical, intellectual, moral, spiritual, is the sole end of education”.

Charlotte Mason

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Get more encouragement in the book: Homeschool Mama Self-Care: Nurturing the Nurturer

Homeschool Mama Self-Care: nurturing the nurturer