Friday, February 4, 2011

Simply Homeschooling

One of the things I Love about homeschooling is the ability to travel and allow the kids to experience the world around them in fun ways. Without the time constraints of the School calender, we can learn at anytime, anywhere...and keep our learning flowing with our everyday living.
This week we took a trip to Pensacola Florida to visit my Grandmother and help celebrate her 90th birthday. Our homeschooling consisted of beach combing and identifying shells, and the wild life of the coast. With visits to the beach, they have become resident shell masters. They can identify the state shells of North Carolina and Florida and know which ones are rare, when is the the best time to search for them and have drawn and painted them in pencil and watercolor.
They have taken photos of the local bird life, trekked through a wildlife preserve and truly enjoy the diversity of the natural world.
They have been able to learn from their Great-Grandmother about her life. Building a family connection between 4 generations. They have gotten a lesson from her in current events of all things just by being able to sit and talk with her, as the news in Egypt unfolds. Schooling for us is a continuous flow of our life. Learning happens all the time, not just during "lessons."
Click over here at for some great inspiration on simply homeschooling.
Ann explains beautifully the 4 steps to keeping it simple and alive. And if you don't home school, you can still get inspiration on keeping life fun and alive with your kids.

From Ann Voskamp:

4 Cornerstones of Simple Homeschooling:

1. A Continuum of Constant Learning….

Live your life. Invite children to join in! Education is a continuum of everyday life.

Read together. Pray together. Sing together. Work, bake, garden, chore, clean, sew, fix, build together. No artificial demarcation lines between schooling and living. Just live a one-piece life. Just live authentically and holistically.

2. Contagious Creativity

Explore! Be awed by His World! Restore Wonder! Be a creative, thinking, exuberant person who spills with the joy of learning.

I once read and it deeply struck me:

“What kinds of articles are most likely to be emailed by users of the New York Times website? Researchers did a six-month study of the most-emailed list and discovered that, more than utility or surprisingness or feel-good factors (which were all helpful for an article’s prospects), it was a sense of awe that made a given article most likely to be shared.

When we are awed by something — we can’t help but pass it on. It’s our natural tendency. And if we are in awe of God — we become natural, unstoppable, top-notch teachers. A zest for learning and life and our Maker will be creative and contagious–the children will catch it! Simply be awed!

3. Curiousity

Read, read, read. Two hours a day, more. Fill the house with library books. Play classical music. Post the art of the masters about the house. Go for walks in the woods. Learn a new language, a new culture, a new poem. Write! Everyday set out to discover again, and again, and again. Simply live curiously. The whole earth is full of His glory! Go seek His face…

4. Consistency

Consistently pray. Consistently read. Consistently keep the routine. Consistently live an everyday liturgy.Consistently celebrate each moment!

Children thrive in routine. So do households. Have hardstops: times that you fully stop to pray, to read, to write. Regardless of what isn’t done, what isn’t finished. Make a full stop, do the needful thing, then return to meals, laundry, household management. Simply consistently be consistent.

And that’s all. Simply homeschooling… living with One at the Center.