Sometimes parents ask me if there are any particular keys to homeschool success. I have to laugh, because there aren’t any no-fail formulas that work for everyone, but I do have some advice that my midwife gave to me the day that my eldest son was born, and I will pass it on to you here.
She handed me my baby, and gave me the only advice that I need to know, which is ‘know your child and trust yourself.’ In the same way, when you homeschool and really know your child, you can trust your own instincts. People think that maybe there’s a magic wand that they can wave and everything is going to work out. But it’s really that love and knowing your child that will ultimately make the difference.
I was getting my hair done one day and listening to two moms talk about their children, who were enrolled in public school. One of the moms was describing how her child simply could not make it through a Pre-Algebra class because it was too hard for him, but the public school insisted that he move on to Algebra 1. She didn’t think it was a good idea, but the school wouldn’t let him retake Pre-Algebra the next year because that would mean a failing grade this year, and they didn’t want that because he would be left behind. She asked her son how it was going during the first weeks of Algebra 1, and he said that he was lost, had no clue what was going on, and that he was going to fail. Two weeks into the quarter, she learned that her son had accidentally been signed up for a Calculus class. Instead of taking and failing Algebra, he was taking and failing Calculus.
Now, homeschoolers are not perfect, but there’s no way in homeschooling that we would make that mistake! Parents know their child better than that. When you know your child and trust yourself; nobody else is better-suited to make decisions about your situation. When people ask me for advice about things, I can give them suggestions and ideas, but I don’t know their child. As their parent, you know your child best. So be confident and trust yourself! The love of your child will help you succeed!