The first place to go is the Psalms. I memorized Psalm 1 last summer, and it has been a blessing to me. Reading the Psalms is a great way to get my head and heart back on the straight path.
But sometimes I crave more specific advise for my life as a homeschooling mom. I'm not worried about enemies bashing down my gates, I'm tired of trying to get kids to complete work in a timely manner, frustrated because my 5th grader suddenly forgot what 8-3 is, and pulled by the magical lure of program X which will cure all your ills and wash the dishes. Again, nothing I need help with - I know the answers. Don't over schedule, work beside the kids, be patient, and beware of hype. I just need to find internal peace, and focus on the important things. These are my favorite blog posts for that, and I hope they will help you as well.
- Cindy Rollins on Homeschooling the Freeborn. Do I want my children to have the education of a slave (focused on conformity and practicality) or of a free person (focused on truth and ideas for contemplation).
- Andrew Kern on Playing with the Puppies. Play with math, play with words, play with science - don't force definitions down the child's throat when they aren't ready and don't even care.
- Linda Fay on Ten Habits of a Happy Homeschool. Our habits lay the tracks for our lives. How many things are done without thought? Are those automatic actions helping us? Going into the holidays this particular area is my current focus.
- Colette Longo on Ten Ways to Simplify Homeschooling. This is one of the first posts that inspired me as a homeschooler. I was getting my feet wet and oh my, all the options. And I'm a book lover - I like shiny new words. Thankfully this post, my belief that small children should play a lot, and my small budget helped me to stay balanced.
- Andrew Kern on Teaching from a Place of Rest (post from Sarah which includes a video interview). Another post from Cindy. Andrew has also talked about this at the Well Trained Mind forum in the infamous Circe thread, called "The Thread". It's very long. You've been warned. But this is the thread that answered my unasked questions. And it covers much more than a state of rest.
- Sarah on Over-thinking Homeschool Methods. While I'm moving pretty solidly into the Charlotte Mason camp, I am so guilty of over-thinking. Oh, we need to learn math - which method, which program, spiral or mastery, hands-on or mental, etc. Look, it's time to start Latin - immersion or grammar based, whole lessons or half pace, should we supplement with A, B or both, etc. I would (and sometimes still do though I try not to) research things to death. I started with the world and sifting through everything, rather than starting from my principles, limitations and our personalities then ONLY looking at what fit into those constraints.
- Brandy Vencel on Troubleshooting with Charlotte Mason. She simplifies this so beautifully, and so respectfully. And you can just pick it up, insert the current issue - even if it's very vague, and come up with some steps to take.
- Auntie Leila on Order and Wonder (or what curriculum to use). I wish she would adopt me. Scroll down on the side bar for posts on where to start on your home, if that's part of the problem. (Raising my hand here!)
While I love the advice in the trenches from other homeschool moms, I especially prize the advice of those who have led the way and graduated children while remaining sane. :) So I read widely from Cindy Rollins and Auntie Leila. I always come away revived and ready to face my challenges with a smile.