I have noticed that I tend to skip some subjects or assignments that I don’t like.
Subjects that sometimes get skipped in my home:
- Phonics — not bothering to review sounds and letters learned in previous lessons.
- Bible and History — not bothering to learn new memory work, and neglecting to review old memory work.
- Bible — skipping Bible drills week after week.
- Copywork — neglecting to check the children’s copywork, which they sometimes notice and then neglect doing this subject at all.
- Math Drills — only giving my children their arithmetic worksheets without doing daily drill with them.
- Grammar, Writing, Oral Language — struggling to keep these 3 subjects on pace with each other so that topics are reviewed properly.
- Vocabulary — forgetting to review vocabulary words learned in previous weeks.
- P.E. — skipping it day after day after day, even though we all need the exercise.
- Science — forgetting to have supplies ready so that experiments get skipped repeatedly.
- Crafts and Art — not wanting to bother with the mess so ignoring these subjects entirely.
You may not struggle in these same areas, but I suspect that all of us struggle somewhere. We struggle with consistency. We tend to procrastinate.
Even though diligence is a character quality spoken highly of in YHWH’s Torah, it isn’t easy to be diligent as we teach our children.
- Some school work is boring.
- We look at the clock and realize we’re running out of time in the day — so we skip things.
- The kids complain about having to work.
- Little ones interrupt as we try to teach the older ones.
- We don’t have supplies in the house because we forget to write them on the grocery list or order books from the library.
- We run out of energy.
These are legitimate concerns, but these problems can also start to create a low level of anxiety in our homes. When we don’t feel like being diligent in homeschooling, this is what happens instead:
- We suddenly feel inspired to clean the entire house instead of doing school.
- We make a perfectionist’s list of everything we’re going to do in school NEXT week, rather than doing school today.
- We go take a nap instead of doing school.
- We switch curriculum instead of just completing the work that is assigned.
- We get on Facebook rather than doing school.
- We read a book about why our kids won’t cooperate, rather than insisting that they do school.
- We go eat a snack rather than doing school.
- We holler at the kids about how irresponsible they are, rather than consistently teaching them to do their school.
- We decide it’s too late to bother today; we’ll try again tomorrow.
- We wake up in a cold sweat at 3 am, worrying about the work that didn’t get done.
What We Can Do about It:
- Memorize some verses on diligence. Hang these verses around your school room and home. (Here are some good verses to help you get started.)
- Do the hardest or least favorite subject first.
- Don’t allow complaining. (Check your own attitude, too.) Have everyone memorize Philippians 2:14 and 1 Thessalonians 5:18.
- Divide the difficult task into smaller tasks. (This is one of the benefits of using a prepared curriculum. Make yourself check off each item as you do it, to keep yourself accountable.)
- Check your progress mid-day or mid-morning.
- Change your talk from “we should do this” to “we get to do this” or “we want to do this.” A cheerful attitude and smile is contagious!
- Buddy up. Find another homeschooling mom who will encourage you. (Try our Facebook group!)
- Reward yourself and your children when you complete all your assignments on time! This will certainly improve morale.
I’m not wanting you to become a perfectionist. After reading all this, you might become frustrated because you can’t “do it all.” Instead, pray about the overall amount of homeschooling you do, and ask your husband how much he thinks you should do in a day — and ignore all the rest.
It’s a fine line between perfectionism and slothfulness, though. We all struggle with it because we’re all human. We see other families “having fun” while we’re stuck reviewing multiplication facts with daydreaming third graders. We covet any life but the one YHWH has given us.
I want to encourage you to keep going! Keep the end goal in mind, remembering that the small, daily habits will add up to produce a young adult who is prepared to serve YHWH with his or her life.