The Key to a Successful Homeschool

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We all desire to teach and train our children well. There are subjects to teach, habits to train, character to shape and souls to point to Christ. 

How can we be sure we’re doing it right? 

It is so easy to get stuck in researching and planning curriculum. We see what someone else is doing and start to doubt our own choices. We worry we’re not doing enough. 

How can we succeed at homeschooling? 

Do we teach Latin? 
What homeschool method should we choose?
Should they read by 3 years old? 
Do we buy the big box curriculum?
Do we need a school room? 
Is unschooling better? 
Should we join a co-op? 
What if they fall behind? 
Do we avoid worksheets?
What about living books?
Should we use that shiny new curriculum everyone is buzzing about?
What if we can’t get through the day without falling apart, let alone doing school? 

Has your head exploded yet? 

Too often, we scramble to keep up with other homeschoolers or with our own ideals about what homeschool is supposed to look like. 

The truth is that the only thing that will bring success to your homeschool is to make it about God, for God and from God. 

I am convinced that if we do this, all the other pieces will fall into place. He will lead us to the right routines, curriculum, groups and opportunities for our family. Everything will click. 

“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” ~ Matthew 6:33

About God

The most important things we can teach our children are about God. First and foremost, our focus should be on teaching these precious children who God is, who they are in Him, and that He loves them. We teach them the way of Jesus. That right there is a full time curriculum. 

For God

We exist to bring glory to God. So do our children. We have been entrusted (not without help and empowerment) to raise them for that purpose. Our homeschool days and content should reflect that. 

From God

We need to trust Him! He has a plan and a hope for our children’s future. He CARES about what and how they are taught. As we consider the new homeschool year, are we truly seeking Him in prayer and listening for his guidance? Or relying on the wisdom of man to tell us what to do?  

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord…” ~ Jeremiah 29:11

What Does About, For and From God Look Like? 

The only way to have a successful Christian home education is to arrange everything in our homeschool around Christ. If we seek Him earnestly, He will work this out in our individual families. 

We need to pray. Really pray. Fast if we are led to. Keep our hearts alert and listening for His answers. 

He always answers. 

When things get crazy as you plan or carry our your homeschool days, pray about how you can make it by, about and for Him. Here are some ideas in that direction:

  • Pray every morning and at each transition. Ask for His presence and guidance as you go. I forget to do this more often than I’d like to admit. 
  • Make the first subject of the day Bible lessons and scripture memory. If that’s all that gets done that day (which happens a lot at our house), at least it was the most important thing. 
  • Choose curriculum that honors God and His Word. 

Christ is the center of our homeschool. How do I know? Because we purpose it to be that way. 

And when we lose our way, which we are wont to do, God gently reminds us to focus on making it about Him, for Him, and from Him. 

How do you keep from getting distracted from God’s direction for your homeschool? 


This Post Has 10 Comments

    1. Tauna M

      You are very welcome! Hope you are encouraged by it.

  1. I love this, Tauna. I have been SO overwhelmed with curriculum options, scheduling, co-ops, and you are right on target with what I NEED to be doing instead of worrying about it all. I need to make sure it’s about God, for God, and from God. Thank you for this timely reminder because what I want most for my kids is for them to know and love the Lord. Everything else is secondary.

    1. Tauna M

      I’m so glad, Keri! It’s hard not to worry and fuss – I know that for sure! But we can keep reminding ourselves of this truth and re-focus as needed! Bless you on your new homeschooling journey.

  2. Anonymous

    You hit the nail right on the head Tauna. I homeschooled my two youngest children since they were in 3rd grade and found that putting God first made the rest of it so much easier..I was leery about what curriculum to use..but with much prayer, God helped my to create my own curriculum by taking ideas from used home school books that friends gave me, and that I bought at thrift shops and created my own worksheets…it was less repetitive which worked well with my son who would get bored easily with doing the same work over and over..he wanted to learn it and move on…where as my daughter was just the opposite..she needed more time to learn certain more worksheets were required for her. It was great being able to get creative with my teaching methods too..both my kids are wonderful at creative writing, and are avid readers. The part I loved most was spending good quality time with my kids. We were involved in a co-op too..which was wonderful because we went on some really great field trips, and share ideas with one another as to what worked for us and what didn’t. We also went on lots of family field trips too. I wish I had homeschooled all my kids..I have 5 in all

    1. Tauna M

      Thanks for stopping by and chatting! I tend to cobble together my curriculum as well. I can’t seem to leave plans alone. We have done co-ops at times and not others. There are just so many ways to accomplish a good solid home education. There really is no formula! I guess that’s another reason to seek God and His direction as we navigate the jungle of options.

  3. Mrs. Sarah Coller

    This is so excellent…and so timely! I really needed to read this and truly feel so relieved that I just want to cry. (But I’m at Starbucks so gotta be cool… 🙂 It’s all stuff that I truly know in my heart, but I’ve been so distracted lately with feeling like we’re just not doing enough. We’re not, in all actuality, but it’s because we’re not doing the important things first. Like you, there have been days when all we’ve accomplished was Bible study. Why should I feel bad about that? Like my son said the other day, the most important things to know are the things of God. All else is just stuff. 🙂

    A girl from our local HS group and I were just discussing this in yesterday. In fact, this is what I wrote: ” If you are solid about homeschooling then you have to politely let those who would make “suggestions” know that you have made your choice. You have nothing to worry about. I can absolutely guarantee that. Everyone matures at their own pace, learns at their own pace, has different interests and preferences. That’s the beauty of homeschooling—you can allow your kids to be free to be who they are and grow into who they’ll become—at their own pace—without worrying about measuring up to others’ expectations of them. The only gauge any of us should ever measure ourselves by is, “am I closer to Jesus today than I was yesterday?” That’s about it…the rest of it really doesn’t matter too much.”

    As homeschooling parents, we have the opportunity to tailor our kids’ education in a way that sets them on a path that will utilize the specific gifts and callings they’ve been blessed with. We have to be in prayer, though…and we have to make sure they are grounded in God and growing. I remember in my early days of HSing (ok, I’m not that old, but it was in the beginning and it’s all relative! 🙂 I was at a mom’s meeting and I shared with the ladies how God had showed me that I was to start praying that He would show me specific things to pray about for each of my kids. I told them how God was telling me that it was important that my kids got a well-rounded education, but that He would show me the specific areas to put more focus on, depending on which kid it was. There was a more “seasoned” lady there who told me that was silly since my kids were so young and that I’d have lots of time to do that in the future. I’m thinking she totally missed the point of what I was saying… But, since that was back in my not-so-bold days, I totally took that to heart and, it’s just now in this article that you’ve written, that I’m realizing that, because of that discouragement, I’ve never followed through on what God was speaking to me that day!!! 🙁

    Like I said, it’s one of those things that my heart knows but my head fights with. There are so many homeschoolers now though that, hopefully, the next generation won’t be faced with so many preconceived ideas of how it’s *supposed* to be; but will, instead, seek God for how He wants it to be for each individual situation.

    Thanks again for such great encouragement!!!

    1. Tauna M

      Oh Sarah! I have received discouraging comments as well. It’s good to remember that as new homeschoolers come on the scene, we need to build up and encourage instead of imposing what works for our families onto them. I’m really sorry you had that experience. What a good reminder to follow God’s leading and also to be mindful of what we say to others.

      I imagine every generation will deal with these issues. We are always so quick to look for the formula. A list of rules or a book that tells us the best way to homeschool would be SO much easier than being truly, fully dependent on God to guide us.

      This was perfect: “The only gauge any of us should ever measure ourselves by is, “am I closer to Jesus today than I was yesterday?” That’s about it…the rest of it really doesn’t matter too much.”

      What a great summation of what has been on my heart. Thank you so much for stopping by and returning encouragement for encouragement!

  4. Alicia D.

    Again you deliver wonderful advice and encouragement. It is wonderful to know you and how dedicated you are to doing this Family and Homeschool thing right for the Lord. 🙂 I am so thankful for all the material I find here. The very first reason I started homeschooling was because I felt led in my heart by the Lord to do so. Again and again He has shown me what a great life this is. Thank you Tauna!

    1. Tauna

      That’s wonderful Alicia! Thank you so much for the encouragement and kind words. It is such an privilege to teach these children on loan to us, isn’t it?

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