Why Educating My Children Does Not Scare Me

Why Educating My Children Does Not Scare Me

A long, long time ago, back when I used to watch TV, there was a woman on one of the (very tame) reality shows of the time who had said that having lots of children did not bother her because she ran her household like a business. 

It was powerful to hear that said. It stuck with me.

Homeschooling is a lot like running a business, too. And that’s why it does not scare me.

David Allen, productivity consultant and author of Getting Things Done writes

You don’t actually do projects. You only complete the actions related to them.

Educating my children is just one of the projects I do. Just like making dinner, keeping a home running smoothly, writing this blog, writing a book.

Whether we realize or acknowledge it to be so or not, we are constantly making choices about what we consider to be the best use of our time on a daily basis. Sometimes, what we do is not so obvious, sometimes because we can break it down into smaller actionable steps in our heads, it is.

Think about it this way: you don’t actually have to educate your children, you just have to read to them, discuss important subjects with them, provide opportunities to learn, and help them be diligent with practicing. In other words, you have to complete some actions on a consistent basis.

If you have a reasonable sense of control, organization and time management skills and are good at communicating with a normal human being, you can educate your children.

I think a lot of fear comes in when people think of homeschooling because they’re seeing the entire “project” in their head and thinking, I could never do that. 

But you don’t have to.

You don’t actually do projects. You only complete the actions related to them.

See how simple that all makes it seem?

I’m not saying it’s easy; I’m saying it’s simple.

I recently came under fire on Reddit for saying that teaching was not much harder than opening a book and following instructions. I stand by my statement. It’s not much more complicated than that, even though we like to overcomplicate matters.

Of course educating my children is a huge task! It’s a project, a big one. But don’t look at the end result. Consider that is consists of small, daily actions.

If you focus on doing the actions that lead to the end result, it’s doable, and dare I say, simple?

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Author: Purva Brown

Writer / blogger at http://TheClassicalUnschooler.com - unapologetically blending two seeming opposites.

14 thoughts on “Why Educating My Children Does Not Scare Me”

  1. Hi, could you reduce the six or seven different types of fonts you use in the body of the posts to two or three? The current layout is hard to read for me and I’m sure your point could just as well be made with a regular, bolded and italicized font and quotation marks. I really enjoyed the content but find the layout a classic case of “just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should.”

    1. Hi Peter! Actually, there is only ONE font (different sizes), but I see what you mean. I just happened to include the block quote in this post and it makes the formatting look a little jumbled. Most posts don’t include quotes, so this is a self-rectifying problem. Thanks for reading!

  2. I’m a pretty relaxed home schooler, but I do find it to be more complex than how you portrayed it. Take today for example; my high schooler and I opened her biology book and followed the instructions, however the instructions didn’t click. What the science guy writer was trying to communicate to us was not making it through. She wanted to understand, I had no answer. This is one of the many difficulties of homeschooling. Where do you go when you don’t have the answers, you don’t know where to find the answers, and the answers matter. Well, you use the resources that you have, and fight through for understanding. Sometimes you lay it aside to tackle another day. Sometimes you go outside of your known resources and find new ones. All of these scenarios are not easy, they are not follow the instructions kind of actions. They are the nitty-gritty. They are the do hard things part of life that is important to instill in my child and to continue to grow in myself. If I never do hard things I will never do many of the things life has to offer. I am tired of a culture that tells us hard is bad!

    1. Wendy, I often find myself there – tired of a culture that tells us hard is bad. Hard is good and necessary. But as I wrote in another post, I also don’t like to embrace difficulty for difficulty’s sake. Of course there are going to be days when it’s best to tackle it another day; of course there are going to be hard days, sometimes doing all you can means that you don’t get it all done. My point was simply that sometimes we see homeschooling as a momentous task and it can be broken down into smaller ones and dealt with. If I didn’t get that across, I probably didn’t do a very good job of communicating it. I’ll try harder next time. 🙂

  3. I completely agree with you. I homeschool 10 children, all different ages. I take each day on as I do my business one step at a time. My oldest two boys started college at 14 and 15, passing the entrance exam with flying colors. Don’t get frustrated with the process, own the process in order to become the process.

  4. Thank you for this awesome reminder of how GTD can be applied to everything! We have just started homeschooling and are in our 6th week. It never occurred to me to add it to my projects list. This will be implemented immediately!

  5. This was so good for me to read. I sometimes get freaked out thinking of the ‘big project’ – the high school diploma, or whatever aspect of homeschooling is weighing on me that week. I’m getting ready to graduate my first child (eek!) and as I look back I can see the details adding up to this moment. Thanks!

  6. I think as long as your child is learning, you can make it as difficult or as simple as you want it to be. They don’t need to learn EVERYTHING in the world. Half the stuff I learned in public school, I rarely use in my life now. Kids need to learn what is important to them and their world. That’s what is best about homeschooling. You can focus on their interests the majority of the time while still hitting those important concepts.

  7. Ok, so I love what’s being said. I also, agree with Amanda about we learn a lot of useless information in school just because we had to and never use it. Here is my question though how do I just let my son learn freely, teach him where his flow his going and how he learns best and at the same time keep records? I’m new to this and he is dyslexic and reading not is not fun so we look for other ways visual and hands on. So what method to you use to track daily and yearly work? How to you know you met that year standards? I know every state’s laws are different, but just looking for ideas and guidance please.

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