Having talked about not expecting too much of your young student(s), today I have another bit of wisdom to share with first-time homeschoolers: relax, you can do this!
You are already homeschooling
In fact, not only can you do this, but you ARE already home educating your child(ren). Presumably, long before you were getting serious about teaching your child his ABCs, you taught him how to say his first words, eat off a spoon, use rudimentary manners, and so on. There is a common and sad misconception that learning primarily takes place in school between the ages of 6 and 18. Of course, nothing could be farther from the truth. The foundation of academic learning is laid during that time, true. But a foundation is just a foundation, leaving much room to grow in knowledge and understanding over the course of a lifetime. And academic learning is not the only type of learning there is.
The examples above are just some of the ways in which parents teach their child physical skills, character, and the like. If you are capable of doing that, you are capable of teaching book knowledge. Just as you knew when your child was ready to go from rolling over to sitting up to crawling to walking to running to jumping, you will know when your child is ready to to from learning his letters, to sounding out words, to reading and writing, to literature and book reports. Each child is a little different, and YOU as the parent will know best when he is ready for the next step, will know how to best motivate him, will know when to back off and when to expect more.
I know there are many people who received a poor academic education themselves. This does not disqualify them from teaching their own children. To the contrary, by educating them at home, these people will fill in gaps in their learning. Anyone can teach a preschooler, and from there, as the parent teaches, she also learns herself, and gets smarter and better educated over time.
Even for those who did well in school, homeschooling has much to offer in the way of helping us grow in character. Every parent knows that children bring out the best and worst in each of us. Being home with your children every day is a sink-or-swim way of developing godly character. If you don't like being around your children, there is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. Homeschooling teaches and grows the parents as much as it does the children.
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