Hi there! ....
This week we have been at a Creation Ministries family camp and I have not been able to get near a compute to update this section of the newsletter so I’ll have to tell you more about that another time.
Live life with your kids!
Family Life is a Resource for Education
Plan to use Family Life in your Homeschool
Family life is full of happenings that if we get involved then our children will be learning a full spectrum of social, practical, emotional, and spiritual issues. Therefore family life becomes a “resource” for our homeschooling.
As with all things though, we need to be intentional else opportunity after opportunity will slip by and we will be left enjoying our family but maybe feeling a little sad that you saw a teaching moment and didn’t grab it.
There are two keys to making the most of family life
- Being Intentional / planning
- Being flexible
These two traits seem to be in direct contrast but for family life to be beneficial in our training efforts we must be aware of both.
Every family has some aspect of their life that is repeated; daily, weekly, monthly, yearly. It maybe simply having meals – repeated 3 times a day. It maybe doing the grocery shopping – once a week, it maybe phoning Grandma – once a month, it maybe going camping once a year. We need to be aware that these things happen, and then we need to consider the learning opportunities in those activities, and be committed to making the most of those times.
When I plan my weekly, monthly, yearly schedule, family life is one of the first things I consider.
- What happens routinely in our day, in our week, in our month, in our year?
- What special dates does our family celebrate – birthdays, anniversaries, special celebrations?
- What projects have Peter and I planned for this year? Home renovations, camping, traveling, conferences?
- What commitments do we have with our Church family? What is our family involvement going to be?
- What community events will we participate in?
This is the way I make plans to use family life. I plot each of these dates / activities on my calendar. Some of them (like the local Agricultural Show) require a couple of weeks in preparation, so that gets blocked out on my calendar. I plan our “study days” around these times, dates and plans.
Life happens! There is no way we know that the milk is going to be spilt this morning, that our neighbour needs a hand, or that baby is going to start teething! Life just happens. But as we face each of these situations, if we are flexible, then we can optimize these situations by teaching into them instead of being frustrated. Flexibility is a character trait; it is an attitude that will make a big difference in the atmosphere in our homes. To be able to change our plans, to see a different picture and yet never loose sight of what is important, that is being flexible.
Discipleship is our goal
The goal of discipleship means we want to develop our child’s whole life, we want to direct their hearts towards God and His plans for them. When I look at family life, and look for the educational benefits I consider their whole being. I ask myself these questions:
- What can they learn about God from this activity?
- What character trait can they practice?
- What wisdom principle do they need to consider?
- What responsibility can they pick up?
- What can they learn about themselves, about others?
- What skill can they learn?
- What knowledge can they learn?
And to be honest, this is a priority list – relationship with God and each other comes before general knowledge – always!
When I keep this list of questions in my mind I can quickly find something to teach my children regardless of what activity we are involved in.
- I can teach them about God’s goodness,
- I can teach them about the balance of being Bold and being Cautious,
- I can teach them how to spend their money wisely,
- I can teach them to recognize what makes them angry,
- I can teach them to jump rope,
- I can teach them to consider the preciousness of others,
- I can teach them about God’s creation.
Any one of these things can be taught to our children through the things we see, experience and talk about. We don’t always need a curriculum – though we do always need to be talking and experiencing life together!
There are no new additions to Lifestyle Homeschool this week.
You may like to refresh yourself on some Discipleship Homeschool thoughts as you consider your plans for 2009.
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Until next week
Living life with her kids in Australia!
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About Live Life with your kids Newsletter
I know homeschool mums are busy with lots to read, so I have divided my newsletter into four sections and you will receive one section a week; short but regular newsletters!
- Be a Deliberate Parent – Encouragement to continue in purposeful and intentional parenting.
- Family Life is a Resource for Education – Spotlights on a particular aspect of family life so we can see the natural opportunities available to us in educating our children.
- Character Education – Each month we focus on a different character trait – The newsletter will include application for Mums, as well as seeing character training opportunities in everyday life.
- A Homeschool Thought – Discussing homeschool issues
The newsletter will also keep you updated with all additions to