Life Lessons I’m Learning From my Homeschool Kids

Can a homeschool mom learn from her homeschool kids? It’s usually the other way around, right?

Turns out I’ve learned a few things from my homeschool kids too.

One homeschool morning, I overheard my preschool daughter declare, “I would want to be God. I would want to be beside everyone.”

Turns out, there are some life lessons I learned from my homeschooled kids, including compassion and empathy and a whole bunch more things.

Madelyn and me snow sledding: lessons I'm learning from my homeschooled kids

What am I learning from my kids?

Well, they got me thinking about what I’d like to do if I were God.

If I were God, I’d likely do other things, like obliterate poverty & war, embody God’s wisdom, not allow bad stuff to happen, function optimally without sleep, and wash my floors with a snap of my fingers.

Kinda like being Mary Poppins on speed with a splash of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela: which, come to think of it is what most homeschool mamas become with a whole lotta practice.

Realistically, though, what I can do is strive to understand myself and others, be at peace with myself and those in my sphere as best as I am able, and then I will have an unspoken impact outward.

Zach with snowman teaching me about playing at random times of the day

Hard work turns everything into gold.

All my kids can work hard. We have taught them that. But some of them come by it without my prodding.

Grit. Hard work. Tenacity. Sow what you reap. Whatever you call it, it gets a reward.

The ones born from me who naturally bear this trait accomplish more with effort than those born with aptitude.

Don’t do it the way everyone else does it.

Hannah playing guitar and Madelyn singing in private concert

Put your stamp on it. Do something outside the box.

At age four, Zach wore his outfit backward. I asked if he knew it was backward. He said he did.

I asked, why are you wearing it backward?

He said, So others will know and ask me WHY I am wearing my clothing backward.

Okey dokey.

From a very young age, we want to be different, unique, set apart from the crowd. Perhaps our immature approaches to being different would be simpler and easier than some of our adult approaches.

One of my kids repeatedly does this, without thought. Unique as she is, it often bugs me that she does things independently because it is almost ALWAYS different than my way. But she often comes to a similar endpoint, sometimes with less effort, sometimes with more…sometimes accomplishing more than I would.

However, one thing she’s not, though, is afraid that others think of her as doing things differently. She doesn’t register it and she doesn’t care.

Anyways, life is more interesting that way. Why do things the way everyone’s doing it?

Strive for interest, not approval.

Things I've learned from my homeschool kiddos

Be sweet. It gets you sweet friends.

One of my kids knows how to make friends.

Is she self-conscious? If she is, I can’t see it.

She assumes people will like her, but doesn’t register when they don’t.

If someone doesn’t care for her, she just moves on till she finds someone who does. No offense taken.

I don’t need self-analysis: why am I not good enough? No comparisons are required. She thinks: I’m as good as her, she should like me. She doesn’t seem to focus on the differences, rather she focuses on their similarities.

This kid is just warm, cute, and friendly. Being interested in others, showing warmth in a smile, and not taking things too seriously enables friendships, and she models it for me.

There isn’t a right age to know something.

anonymous girl looking at picture in book

You can know your times tables at four and still not be versed in the alphabet. You can know how to wield clever dialogue and interesting plot lines, but not comfortably divide fractions.

Grade segregation is an understandable attempt at dividing mass numbers of children that generally, probably, have similar levels of understanding — and yet they aren’t at the same place in everything.

I learned fractions in mid-life, not elementary school. Yet I did well in university stats, calculated pediatric dosages, and figured out how much garden soil was required for my raised garden beds last summer.

And I would likely shock my high school math teachers to learn that I teach math to my kids.

Go figure. There is no right age for learning math.

There isn’t a right age to do anything.

Zach gassing car

They fight overdoing this. For this fight, I do not complain. My hands are cold. So if they want to gas the van, they are more than welcome.

Of course, I’m standing by…I have to insert the credit card. Wait…maybe next time I don’t.

When they do productive things, they know they’re a meaningful participant in our family. And they really are every time they go grab me a few items from the produce section, or clean the bathroom, or plan dinner.

Yes, you could say I should do it for them. No worries, I do plenty.

I think that if they can do it, they should do it. And if they want to learn to do something, as long as it’s safe, you go girl (or guy)!

Build that Ikea bookshelf, try your hand at seeding the garden, cook dinner, or write that blog.

The world is filled with many little people, capable of much, understanding much, with much to offer, and we should see them for what they are: little and people.

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