It’s that time of year again, everyone is throwing around the “R” word. It’s in our nature. A new year is beginning. It feels right to reevaluate our lives and make a fresh start with new goals, or “Resolutions”. As homeschoolers, we are also looking at a new semester. It’s the perfect time to consider what is working and what is not. It’s time to re-prioritize our routine.
I think New Years’ Resolutions get a bad rap because many times we find ourselves saying the same things and not really following through. I will lose weight, spend more time with family and read my Bible more. Without a plan to really make those things happen, we will continue doing the same things over and over and expecting a different result. I’ve heard it said that is the definition of insanity.
If I want to bake cookies, I don’t just say, “Today I will bake Peanut Butter Blossoms,” and then sit on the couch and wait for them to appear. Instead, I look up a recipe, make a grocery list, gather ingredients and the tools I need to make the cookies.
It’s the same with our homeschool. If I declare, “I will be more intentional in my homeschooling,” pat myself on the back and move on with my life, nothing will change or improve. That’s a hollow resolution. This year let’s make resolutions and then gather the ingredients and tools that will make them possible.
Here are the three goals I have set for this New Year/new semester:
#1 Prioritize Relationships
Ingredients: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self-control
Tools: Board games, walks, conversations
Directions: Fill your soul with the fruit of the Spirit and let it pour over onto your kids. Set a routine and start the school day. When someone has a break down or seems to be struggling, ignore the checkbox mentality and pause. Prioritize your child’s heart over the math lesson. Play games, take walks and be a good listener.
#2 Read Aloud More
Ingredients: consistency, time, fun
Tools: Book lists, audio books, reward charts
Directions: Pick a book from one of the wonderful lists out there, find it at the library in book or audio form. Set aside 15 minutes every day at a time of day that you can do consistently. Snuggle up, set a timer and read/listen together. Use the Reward system from last week for motivation.
#3 Give More Grace (to everyone, including myself)
Tools: prayer, scripture, mommy time-outs
Directions: Set aside time to pray and fill your mind with scripture. When the lesson doesn’t go as planned, or someone has a bad attitude, take a break. When the frustration level rises, remove yourself to a quiet place, take a breath, say a prayer and don’t press forward until you can do so with a peaceful countenance.
What are your homeschool resolutions? And how do you plan to put them into practice?