Education only occurs when the student self-educates. Every person is his own educator because he can only learn what he chooses to learn. Teachers can teach, and yes we can attend classes and lectures to learn, however the only students who truly learn are those who take on their own learning and teach themselves from that which they have been presented.
Exponential growth takes place on the border of challenge and support. An inspired education is not an education room filled with silence or perfect little students sitting in their desks doing their studies. It’s real life, peaceful and blissful at home, while at other times noisy and what may seem to you troublesome at times. Yes, the children will sit at their desks and do their academic studies and work. At times they will struggle, not moving at the pace you think they should. Other times they will fly through their work at a rapid pace. On occasion everything may seem to fall apart and not go as planned, but you can still be calm because you are inspired, you are filled up. You know this is the place of exponential growth, on the border of challenge and support. You are strong and well supported; you understand where your children are, what they need and why this is happening because an inspired education supports the parents as well as the children in homeschooling endeavors.
If you are not actually engaged in self-education, it may be hard to believe that children will actually be able to teach themselves and learn what they need to learn. One of the biggest mistakes in home education is the neglect of accountability. Systems and checkpoints must be set in place to support the child in his learning and inspire progress. Without it a child is left to his own devices and becomes stressed. This stress simply comes from not having direction and feeling like he doesn’t have the support necessary for being educated. Remember, your child is a child and can’t be held accountable for his entire education. He needs guidance, challenge and support.
It’s time to set your children up for success. Here are five steps to create successful self-education in your home school.
1. Create an environment conducive to inspired learning. Be sure it includes plenty of people, the natural flow of everyday life, events in the home, community and world, quality books, a time-tested education plan for academic excellence, love and encouragement, common sense, curiosity and time and space to explore and grow.
2. Tools and a curriculum that is whole and complete. Most curriculums are created to be taught by a teacher, so parts of the lessons are left out of the text and must be filled in by a teacher explaining and teaching. A child can only self-educate with the most whole and complete resources that are conducive to self-education.
3. Well-organized plan. You can’t get to where you want to go without a map. Using a well-organized plan will help keep you on the path to the success you desire and your children need to advance in the areas of their purpose. This includes success principles that are applied to everyday living, making the transition to adult living easier.
4. Recordkeeping that’s easy enough for an 8-year-old to use. We can’t clearly know how far we’ve come or how far we need to go without results that are measured. Keeping your system easy enough for your children to use gets them on the path to self-education in a faster and easier way. Not only will recordkeeping serve as records for legal purposes, but they are also used as a tool to create success. This lifts a lot of the challenge between parent and child, focusing on what the tools and records reveal.
5. Accountability, thorough review, mentoring and regular mentor meetings. Accountability doesn’t mean you have to always be telling. It is a careful and strategically planned system to support your children in what they need to do. Mentor meetings bring you together as partners, giving everyone the support and guidance they need.
We learn most on the border of challenge and support. Keep your children challenged enough for them to step up out of their comfort zone, working hard and finishing. At the same time you will be supporting them by providing what they need and making sure they know they can do it.