One of the most challenging aspects of homeschooling, for all of us, not just newbies, is to avoid doing things purely out of habit.
This week, our family has been on a holiday trip, and despite our best efforts, our family rhythm has been completely uprooted. What has happened in this is two fold: It’s given us space to reflect on what we’ve liked and haven’t liked about how our routine has evolved in the past year or so. It’s also given us opportunity to see how different approaches may work better than the routines we’ve been following almost exclusively out of habit.
In essence, we have been living the way we do because it’s the way we’ve been living. It’s a circular process. Although my hubby and I do talk a lot about why we do things, and we talk about our ever-changing family goals, there is nothing like going on an educational vacation to give us space to see with more clarity and to foster new ideas on what might work better.
We like most of how we’ve been doing things with our kids, but there are a couple things that we’ve been struggling with. And although our “teacher conferences” have helped evaluate those part we struggle with, it wasn’t until this vacation that we were finally able to come up with a plan that moved us out of the box of our own habits, and into a place where we can really try something new.
I’m looking forward to getting back home (if we make it out of the storm that’s headed our way). I want to get back into our familiar routine, our comfortable habits, while at the same time, trying out the new ideas we’ve come up with while away on our vacation.
Educational habits aren’t necessarily a bad thing. But having some distance away from those habits is a good way to evaluate whether those habits are indeed creating a positive learning environment, of if those habits are there merely due to a lack of perspective. For us, it was a bit of both.