I am always talking about how important it is to look beyond the curriculum and textbooks in your homeschool.
You aren’t filling your kids with a pre-defined collection of facts and skills. You have the space and opportunity to teach behaviours and attitudes that your children will take into their adult years. So how do you actually do this? Is there a book you can buy, or a curriculum you can sign up for that will do it for you?
Not really, because in reality, your children learn more from watching you than they do from textbooks. So I would like to encourage you to use this privileged position of influence to help your kids thrive.
I am going to outline three ways you can model the behaviours you want your children to absorb. These aren’t skills you can get from a book. They come from the behaviours and attitudes you show your family.
Inspire your children to become life-long learners.
You want your children to be life-long learners, but do you show them what that looks like?
Pursuing your own education shows your kids what it looks like to be a lifelong learner. You might enrol in formal education, or you might define your own learning journey with your own resources. There are no one-size-fits-all solutions for everyone. The important part is that you show your children how to stay interested and inquisitive.
- Include your children in this journey by studying in front of them,
- Relate the content you are learning through conversation. You could even include this in your homeschool studies.
- Show your kids the assignments you have produced for formal education.
- Encourage your children to ask questions and help them find ways to research answers.
Teach your children self-respect.
Valuing yourself and your own self-care
Last week I talked about self-care. It is important for you to take time for yourself so you can serve your homeschool best. On top of that, when you make space for self-care, your children learn that self-respect is a normal part of adult life. They learn that it is normal for adults to nourish and value their own needs. That will encourage your children to practice those behaviours in their adult lives.
Won’t it be wonderful watching your kids treat themselves well as they grow?
Show your children the value of healthy relationships
Nourishing community and connection within your homeschool
Of course you want your children to be intelligent and informed. And it is important your children have the knowledge and skill for a successful career.
But won’t it be great to see them with meaningful and loving relationships as well?
Sometimes it is better to prioritise relationships over textbooks. If you need to take some time to connect with your children, encourage siblings to bond, or bring your whole family together in activities – let that be your focus for a few days. Math books will always be there to come back to.
Homeschooling can also be an opportunity to explore relationships with your family and community. Do you have family members or friends who can extend your children’s learning? Perhaps a friend, an aunt, or a grandparent has a skill they can pass on to your kids? You will be encouraging your children to nourish and grow strong relationships, and they will get more learning. That’s a win, win!
There are countless other ways you can model and encourage lifelong skills and attitudes in your children. I would encourage you to reflect on your own family and find opportunities that suit you. But these are three simple ways you can get started. Does it all feel a little overwhelming? I have created a free homeschool planning tool that can help you break these ideas into simple steps. You can find it here.
And you would like more support and guidance, I have an online course that will help you. Nurture Your Homeschool will take you, step by step, through a series of activities and planning tools. It will help you create opportunities to model lifelong skills to your family.
Want to teach life long skills in your homeschool?
Learn how to create opportunities to model and nurture life long skills to your children.