Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom
It’s the end of September and by now many homeschooling families have discovered a new rhythm for a new school year. Most of our time as homeschooling parents is spent focused, as it should be, on helping the little people in our care get the education we know they deserve.
I also try to keep in mind, however, that I hope not only to teach my children, but to inspire them to learn. In order to do so, I need to be putting forth an effort at continuing my own education as well.
How can we go about learning with so many other to-dos on our full plates?
1. Get a passion.
We inevitably make time in life for our priorities–the things we truly value. Part of finding a passion means allowing ourselves to believe that our own education is actually a worthwhile priority, not a waste of time.
Some of you reading know without hesitation what your passions are, while others may need to spend time brainstorming to uncover them.
For the past year I’ve been slowing learning about whole foods and nutrition–something I honestly knew zilch about beforehand. I’ve read books and studied blogs in an effort to learn more–and this has influenced our family. The first step, though, was allowing my newfound interest in the subject to become a priority.
2. Make the time.
If you’re like me, every minute of the day counts and there isn’t exactly a whole lot of “extra” lying around. Investing in our education will mean a commitment of time. It will mean putting yourself first for a change.
One way I’m currently doing this is by enrolling in Lisa Byrne’s Designed for Wellness course (Registration is now closed but you can get on the newsletter list to find out about new courses as they open.) and I’m looking forward to discovering how to go to the next level in my own health and wellness.
Making time will often mean giving something else up (and not sleep!). My husband and I watch very little television, but I’ve decided that I want to cut back in that area even more. I’d rather devote my limited free time to activities that actually fuel and refresh rather than drain me.
Photo by Brendan Riley
3. Share with your kids.
If we only devote time to learning when our kids are asleep, we miss an important opportunity. Make sure that you spend some time studying when your children are around as well.
Doing so will naturally lead to them being involved. One of the things I’ve learned during my whole food revolution is how to make my own yogurt (Check out this recipe from Simple Bites). It’s so simple that my kids enjoy helping me and watching the process. I love seeing how my education in this area has led to their own–and to a healthier atmosphere in our family.
When we learn, we influence and inspire the whole family. Charlotte Mason, the British educational reformist, once wrote that “the only true education is self-education.”
If you’ve been homeschooling long, you know just how true this statement is. You cannot actually force your children to learn anything! But as we educate ourselves, we point the way forward on the path to lifelong learning.
What are you interested in and how can you find the time to invest in your own learning goals?