I decided to blog the process of school planning this year. I recently asked the group on my Jelly Bean Jar Publications Facebook page if anyone would be interested in seeing the rather unglamorous process I go through each year; the response was overwhelmingly positive!
Before I start this, I want to make sure everyone reading these ramblings, understands that every family is different, and what works for me may or may not work for you! That’s the beauty of homeschooling – the ability to make it work for our individual, unique homes. Having said that, maybe following me through this process will make you feel more secure and confident in your own ability to plan well for your homeschool year. I promise that everything I post will be authentic and un-staged.
For you to completely understand all of this, please start with the knowledge of what type of person I am: loosely organized, likes lists of stuff I need to complete (but not compulsive about checking everything off), tend to be spontaneous, like to do things the way my family needs, have an unusual vision of what true education is.
My first (and continuing throughout) step is refocusing my mind and heart on my responsibilities and prioritizing them. I pray, and I make lists. Lots of lists. 🙂 I make lists (I’m visual!) of my responsibilities before God, and I make lists of issues and projects that I need to complete or change in order to fulfill those responsibilities. As you can see in the sample below, it’s scribbled on a notebook page as it comes to my mind.
Needed for this step: a notebook, pen, time to pray about prioritizing your responsibilities.
This takes me being extremely honest with myself about how I’m living at the moment – what am I making my priority? Am I focusing on the right areas of my life?
Balance can be so illusive! It is a question I have to keep at the front of my mind at all times.
God first. Do what I have to do to put Him first. Time with Him first. All areas of my life open before Him. Growing in my relationship with Him.
Husband next. Put him before everything in my life but God. Pray for him. Pray with him. Be his friend. Give him the level of domestic support he needs. Be there for him. Let him off of the hook – he’s a human man and unable to read the female mind, let alone follow crumb trails – just be open and honest. He isn’t supposed to be my everything; only God can do that.
Children after hubby. And YES, this makes homeschooling those children less important than relationship with hubby! Take the time to be in the moment with each of them. Pray for them. Let them see me praying for them. Be real with them. Play with them. Teach them. Bring them to Jesus.all.the.time. Be open to what God wants to teach them, the way they need to be taught! Choose curriculum that supports this order of priorities.
Business and ministry. This one tends to slip up through the ranks unless I intentionally keep it down where it belongs. It’s important, but it’s not the most important thing. Be willing to do whatever God wants me to do but also know that He is NEVER going to ask me to do something in this area that will move it up on the priority list.
God -> Dave -> Children -> Work/ministry.