How do you want your days to go? What do you want your child’s education to look like? What type of learning works best for your children? Where will your learning occur?
There are so many opportunities and experiences available in the homeschool world, that figuring out where to start is simply overwhelming. By creating your vision for your family’s homeschool, you can tune out much of the noise and focus on creating the homeschool life you want to live with your family. Your Homeschool Vision then becomes the gatekeeper to your homeschool. Once you’ve created your Homeschool Mission and your Homeschool Vision, you’ll be able to focus on what needs to be accomplished and then thrive in your school as you work towards fulfilling your mission and vision.
How do you create your Homeschool Vision? You probably already have a good idea of what you’d like your homeschool to look like, writing it down solidifies what you’re already thinking, and gives you a roadmap through the years. Keep your ideas in mind and work through our list of steps for creating your vision.
5 Steps for creating your Homeschool Vision:
1. Spend a day or two truly considering what you want your homeschool to look like. Look through blogs about homeschooling, talk to friends who homeschool, or search Pinterest for ideas on how families all over the world homeschool.
2. Create a list of ideas that you find attractive or things you want to do in your homeschool. Include items that you know will work well for you children’s learning styles.
3. Once you have spent time considering what you want your family’s homeschool life to look like, begin narrowing down your list and combining items. (Example: If your list includes “special reading times each day” and “listen to audiobooks before dinner,” you can combine them into “a place where the joy of reading is celebrated.”
4. Create a bullet list of 8 to 12 items that encompass your desires for your homeschool. See the example below:
The Donovan Family Homeschool will:
- Be a place where the joy of reading is celebrated.
- Include learning activities we all share.
- Be a place of active, engaging learning.
- Include travel for first-hand experience.
- Be a place where our children will find and improve their gifts.
- Include social, life, and entrepreneurial experiences.
- Be a place where it’s okay to get messy and make mistakes.
- Include learning a second language.
- Be a place where the joy of childhood is celebrated.
- Include practical life skills along with strong academics.
5. Once you’ve created your Homeschool Vision, print it and display it next to your Homeschool Mission. Make a second copy to keep with your records so you’ve always got it in easy reach.
How do you use your vision as a gatekeeper for your homeschool?
1. Use your vision to figure out which homeschool method will work the best for your homeschool.
2. Once you’ve figured out your method, you can narrow down your curriculum.
3. You can hold every activity and opportunity up against your vision. If it fits your vision and mission, great! Enjoy the activity and benefit from it. If it doesn’t fit your vision or mission, then pass on the opportunity. (Example: We have had the opportunity several times for different sport teams, but my children are not particularly gifted in sports. Signing them up for the teams would not fit our vision, as we would lose the freedom to travel and engage in active learning because of the time constraints of the sport.)
One note: Your mission will not change much over your homeschool years. It’s like the underlying foundation to your home. To change the foundation takes a lot of expensive work and will always cause a disruption to the lives of anyone in the house. Your vision is much like the walls of your home. You live within them, find the best paint and décor for them, but every now and then they need a little repair or updating. Every couple years, sit down and review your vision. Your kids will grow, life will change. You may need to rethink how school works for your family. The general structure will likely stay pretty close to your original design, but a tweak here or there could simply make it all work better. (Example: Changing “Be a place where the joy of childhood is celebrated” will likely morph into “Be a place where relationships will grow during the teen years” as the children grew into teens.
As a homeschool parent, you will be pulled in 34,897,623,408,912,750,182,361,897,354 different directions if you allow yourself to be. Creating your mission, then narrowing down your vision for your homeschool days will allow you to say “yes” to the opportunities that will allow your family to flourish and help you say “no” to the things that will distract your family and pull you apart.
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