Find a Vision for your Homeschool Family in the 2024 New Year

Thrive: advance, do well, get ahead, get better, grow rich, prosper. We want to thrive so we need to find a vision for your homeschool.

Is my family thriving? Some days just getting by feels like it surely must be enough.

Let’s chat about finding a vision for your homeschool.

But first, you say, you have other stuff to do…

  • The kids are fed. They poured themselves a bowl of cereal, I think.
  • They’re dressed. Well, he did wear that outfit to bed, but it’s relatively clean.
  • And they’re all kept out of harm’s way. Until I realized a hot cup of tea shouldn’t have been on a side table with a toddler in the house. 

I might want to find a vision for your homeschool, but my ordinary homeschool life has a lot of demands.

In early family life, just dressing them, feeding them, and keeping them safe seemed a daunting task.
  • Finding time to pee or shower without an audience was a challenge.
  • Grand ambitions of happy outings to the zoo seemed unrealistic when you had the two-year-old unhappily strapped into her car seat, a container of Cheerios splattered on the floor, and the baby desperate for a nap — just as you were gearing to get out the door exactly two hours after originally planned.
Challenging days, some days.

Children get older and are independent enough to make their breakfast.

Different ages, different struggles.
  • They still need to learn how to talk kindly to their siblings.
  • They need to speak in a way they’ll get heard by parents.
  • And they learn to deal with their angst about, well, everything an adolescent gets anxious about.

What does thrive mean when we just hope to survive?

Join the 2024 Homeschool Challenge

Before we determine our vision, we must clarify where we’ve been:

(Questions from Sarah Susanka’s book, The Not So Big Life).

Consider your past year:
  • How have you spent your time?
  • What goals did you aspire to and how did you go about working toward them?
  • What are the results of the actions you have taken?
  • What events, realizations, and understanding have come into being?
  • What has inspired you?
  • What makes you grateful?
  • What were your sorrows and disappointments, and how have they changed you?
  • What books have you read this year, and what impact have they had?
  • What movies and other entertainments have moved you, and in what ways?
  • What journeys have you taken?
  • What conditioned patterns have you recognized and what experiences have allowed you to see them more clearly?
Then engage questions about your present:
  • How are you different now from the way you were last year at this time?
  • How can you integrate the key lessons of the past year into your life?
  • Are there any strategies, phrases, or questions, that have particular significance for you right now?
  • Are there any things you’re trying to force into existence right now? If so, what would happen if you stopped trying to make them happen?
  • To what part of yourself are you trying to give birth? (ps If you’re pregnant as you’re listening, I don’t mean your baby, ha).
  • What are you becoming?
  • Has your experience of time changed since last year?
Then engage questions about your future:
  • Specifically, what is it that you wish to focus on in the coming year 2024?
  • If you could sum up all your desires and longings in a straightforward statement spoken from the highest aspect of yourself, what would it be?

After I complete my answers in my journal, I choose three words to focus my days (thanks Brendon Burchard, who, not coincidentally, is the author of the book, The Charge, which we’ll be reading in the Homeschool Mama Book Club this Friday, you’re invited!) for each day of the year. I write these intention words on each daily journal entry and slip them into my iPod as a daily reminder too.

If you want to dig deeper into ways to live your homeschool life on purpose, I encourage you to listen to the podcast episode, “6 Ways to Live Your Homeschool Life on Purpose”.

the Wiedrick Family at Giverny of the Mountains: finding a vision for your homeschool

So how do I find a vision for my homeschool?

1. Be proactive, not reactive.

It’s the go-to, default setting to parenting: reactivity. It is too easy. Your child intentionally walks away while you’re telling her something, and the offense is your instinct. A child roars down the stairs with, “Mom, she hurt me, took my thingy away, isn’t being fair…”  

If I know that this scenario plays on repeat in my home, what do I do? If I know that one child reacts more harshly than seems appropriate, what will I do the next time I hear her lambasting her brother for touching her? When I can see that two children fight whenever they’re underslept, oversugared, or overstimulated, how will I plan their days? I need to pre-plan or I will react.

It’s not too late to join the 5-Day Homeschool Vision Challenge if want to clarify your 2024 intentions toward your home education plan.

If you want to get clearer on how to engage your kids, learn how to be proactive, less reactive, and experience less guilt and frustration, then join me in the group coaching program in the next couple weeks. Learn more about that by joining my email community.

2. Make a homeschool vision declaration.

When reading American History with our four kids, we studied the Declaration of Independence and the American Constitution. To cement the learning, we drafted a preamble to our family constitution:

“We the people of the Wiedrick family, in order to form a more perfect family, establish harmony, ensure happiness, provide people space, promote consideration, secure privacy, share and help those in need, do not play fear inducing pranks on our kin, do not create excessive noise to ones ear, do not stir more trouble into our kin’s life. We endeavor to keep the spirit in the bond of peace.”

Wiedrick Kids

This was primarily inspired by my three girls.

Otherwise, I would have added a few more things, but I was pleased that they knew how they wanted to be treated and what they valued in how they should treat each other.

And as you know, it was lovely to pin to the fridge. It was a thousand times easier to write than to implement. We acknowledge our imperfections, we’ll always be imperfect, and we accept that this family thing is a journey and we have much to learn, but remind ourselves of what we’ve declared about ourselves.

3. Dream a vision for your homeschool family.

When I was pregnant with my first daughter, I daydreamed about my upcoming mothering days. My kids will be so cute, I thought (and they are). They will be amusing little sidekicks to my already focused life (actually, I became the sidekick). The daydream crept into reality at certain moments.

mother and daughter on grass: finding a vision for your homeschool

The days can be long, and demanding, and extending, but we decide each morning to approach each day with intention and vision because though the effort is immense, the payoff is greater.
  • What do you want your day to look like?
  • Do you start a creative activity before the kids sit for breakfast?
  • Do you want to have a fifteen-minute break after lunch?
  • Consider if you want to spend the day learning together, playing games, crafting, feeding the goats, helping neighbours, and building snow forts.
  • What theme words do you want your family to live by?
  • What values do you aspire to?

How to spend eighteen years with your homeschooled children?

Consider listening to the podcast episode, “How to live your simple homeschool life on purpose“.

Go much deeper in crafting your homeschool vision statement by listening to the episode I’ve created for this purpose.

4. Recognize that each child has a vision for their own life.

We have our visions, but our children have their own too.

This, of course, might not be easy to see when they’re three. Though I’ll bet not sooo hard as they gravitate toward scissors and books, or playing in the flour bag, or staring at picture books for hours. It all speaks something about them.

As my children have grown, I’ve come to understand them better. Two kids are spitfires. Two generally follow the rules. Some love structured time and checking all the boxes. Some want to explore things their way, thank you very much!

Just as there are no two fingerprints or DNA strands, each person contributes heartily to our world, and if we follow their internal spark, we will help fan that spark to flames.

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled” (thanks Plutarch). As Dr. Peter Benson summarizes in a TED Talk titled “How Youth Thrive”, we can ask our kids, “What is their spark, what is their fire?”

I wrote a post about “How to Choose Vision Words for your Homeschool“. You might want to check that out if you haven’t decided on your words for each child this year.

family celebrating hanukkah: finding a vision for your homeschool

5. Adjust the vision for your homeschool along the journey.

Just as my personal growth has helped me enlarge and adjust my vision along the way, my personal growth has helped expand my parenting vision.

  • These kiddos do the same thing day in, day out, for such a long time that we identify that ‘thing’ as them, but then they stop doing that activity and move on to something else.
  • They love British history and are lost in books, then one day, they have no time for reading.
  • Certainly, they gravitate to the playroom for Barbies with their sister for years (so many years you wonder if it’s appropriate that they’re still playing Barbies), and then magically one day, they don’t want to play.
  • Their interests expand along the way, and so will their visions for themselves.

So just as you shift and grow and learn, allow them to be themselves on their personal growth journey, and shift and grow and learn too.

6. Craft a personal vision for yourself, a vision outside your homeschool mom vision.

Just as we affirm our children to become who they are meant to be, we also want to do the same for ourselves.

In the Build Boundaries Journaling Workbook, you can use Chapter 2: Your Relationship with You questions to uncover who you are and what you’re meant to do.

Maintain alone time.
  • Do you have time to be with yourself, by yourself, on the regular?
  • Are you comfortable being by yourself?
  • Get familiar with solitude and separateness.
  • What are you going to do with yourself this week?
And make sure you get your regular dose of quiet too.
  • A hot cup of coffee or mint tea before anyone talks with you.
  • Is there a quiet space for you to think in your home?
  • Quiet space to determine our thoughts toward our day: do you have a morning routine?
  • Time to journal, plan, and be quiet.
  • Listen to this podcast about the life of a perpetual mother hen.
Maintain an all-about-you thing because you can’t know who you are if you don’t spend time with yourself.
Participate in energizing activities.
  • For me, writing, gardening, reading, and nature.
  • For you, weaving, canning, poetry, vlogging, quilting, or keeping up with your 2024 GoodReads challenge.

Whatever it is, do it every day. Just 15 minutes.

You can do that or you can learn to do that (and your kids will learn that you are indeed going to do that).

What are you doing to develop yourself alongside your homeschool life?
  • We give our children experiences to explore.
  • We give them books to engage their curiosity.
  • We give them tools to discover.
  • We search for people who might mentor them.
  • We listen and we watch them.
  • We affirm them and we guide them.
Each of us is inherently important and valuable. Including you, homeschool mama!

So though one of your special purposes presently is to lead and guide and nurture your homeschool kiddos, it’s also being you outside your responsibilities toward your little people.

  • You have a unique reason for being on the planet: what might it be?
  • We each have a unique purpose: 7 billion unique reasons.
  • Are you becoming more you as you live this homeschool life?
I encourage you to be more you.
  • Give yourself experiences to explore.
  • Give yourself books to engage your curiosity.
  • Consider giving yourself tools for personal growth, like coaching, courses, or books.
  • Search for people who might mentor you.
  • Listen and watch yourself: what do you need?
  • Affirm yourself…because as Ralph Waldo Emerson says…

“To be yourself, in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Teresa Wiedrick

I help homeschool mamas shed what’s not working in their homeschool & life, so they can show up authentically, purposefully, and confidently in their homeschool & life.

Call to Adventure by Kevin MacLeod