All Posts By

Karen DeBeus

homeschool

Homeschool: More Than Books

As we approach the end of this journey for our oldest child, I have learned that homeschooling is more than books. Homeschooling is more than tests. Our kids are more than a curriculum.

From the early years on, I pored over curriculum catalogs, dreamed big dreams of what our days would look like, spent hours researching the best methods, and ultimately life proved much different than those early dreams.

Homeschooling is a way of life, and education is not limited to the quantification of a test grade. My kids have learned far beyond walls of a classroom.

That time we bought a house, sold our house, and then it all fell through? They learned about some real life there- mortgages, inspections, attorney reviews. All things I never knew about until I was an adult!

Those times learning how to raise animals here on our little hobby farm- building coops and barn stalls, planting and harvesting a garden, milking goats? Not just skills that involved science and math, but skills you can’t just learn about in a book. Caring for living creatures, showing compassion, responsibility, and dedication.

The times that we walked through deep sorrow and grief as tragedy struck in lives close to us? Difficult times, but life lessons for sure. Attending funerals, handling grief, being there for friends, and dealing with emotions as they drove us to our Savior’s arms. Lessons that can never be taught in a book.

The joys, the excitement, the highs…all experiences that must be lived. Not taught in a book.

Relationships that have been built. Bonds that have formed. Our family is a so tight-knit and close, all because we have lived each day together.

So while I remember those early years of thinking I need that perfect curriculum, that perfect set up, that perfect room, that perfect method. I see that the only perfect was really the life God was creating for us to live…and the learning as we went. Experience has after all been, the best teacher.

Read about our journey in my best-selling books:

Called Home: Finding Joy in Letting God Lead Your Homeschool

Real Homeschool: Letting Go of the Pinterest-Perfect and Instagram- Ideal Homeschool

Listen to my podcast here

homeschool

Externals Vs. Eternals

I just returned from speaking at the Teach Them Diligently Convention in Arkansas this weekend and it was a blessed time! I cherish these trips and the opportunities to speak to so many families that are investing in their families by homeschooling their children.

As I  spoke to families of all walks on their journey, one thing became so clear. Everyone wants to do the best job they can. Everyone wants that perfect curriculum or setup. Everyone wants to succeed. And that is a good thing!

And as I walked the vendor halls with so many amazing resources and so many different choices, I was however struck how we need to be so very careful to not measure our success in those externals. It is all about the eternals.

I truly believe the most important book you can teach in your homeschool is the Bible. Without it, everything else is for naught. You children’s core should be shaped by God’s truths.

So while curriculum and resources and all that stuff are important, do not let it take place of the truly important.

The Bible teaches your children who God is, who they are in Christ, godly wisdom, moral laws, and more. It will shape them with God as their center. It is without a doubt, the most important book in your homeschool.

I have seen the Bible and God transform my life. I know without a doubt that my life is built upon the truths found in that book…which is more than a book…it is living Truth.

I must pass that down to the next generation. They must be equipped in this world that is so upside down, with the absolute truths of God’s Word. There really is no better way to equip them for life, than to follow God.

Once they are following Him and His truths, they will be ready for all that comes their way in life.

Academics are important, but life isn’t live based on them alone. And I believe when we are following God, they will naturally fall into place because we will want to do well, work hard, and be a good steward of our learning.

God alone is what we live for. And when we forget that and start to live for the temporary things of this world, we will struggle to keep our focus.

So remember, above anything you can do, teach your child who God is, and teach from His Word. You can’t go wrong.

My new e-course is NOW available! Join many others who have signed up to make the Bible the foundation of their homeschool!

 

homeschool

All the Things I Worried About Never Came True

As we near the end of this homeschooling journey for my oldest (don’t worry I still have three more kids to go and many more years of homeschooling!) I can’t help but think about all of the worries I had early on. There were so many things that kept me awake at night…that almost stopped me from even starting this journey.

But God.

 Thankfully, He led me to press on and here we are. 

Yet, I wanted to address the major concerns I had, and to show you how they never really were an issue…because I know many of you out there may be in just the place I was 13 years ago…a scared mom feeling the calling to take this step but unsure of where it would lead.

And really…you will never know the outcome in the beginning. In fact, you aren’t supposed to. It is a journey that has to unfold as you go, and you need to trust God.

However, some of the most common fears I had, I can only imagine you might have as well…
  • Socialization. I know, even typing that makes me cringe because we all know it is NOT even an issue…yet, there are still many who think it is. Bottom line after 13 years…my kids are beyond well socialized. And the kind of socialization that I would want for them. They are friends with all age groups (and not peer-dependent) and not just those their age/grade. They have relationships with little ones all the way up to adults. In fact, I have realized that the kind of socialization that takes place in a school setting isn’t really ideal, but the kind that has taken place because we homeschool is actually more fitting for “real life.”
  • What will people think? This one for me was big, but I realize for many, it is a non-issue. But truly, my own stinkin’ pride got in the way early on. I didn’t want to be questioned about my decision or feel the need to “defend” it. Over the years though, I really do not rely on what people think, only what God thinks. I am answering to Him and not to man. But, truly, I  have also found that most people do not think I am crazy or weird, but are intrigued and generally interested in homeschooling (and if they do think it is weird, so be it! 😉 )
  • Am I really capable to teach my children? Yes and no. I say that because am I really capable of anything in life? Not on my own, but with God of course. If He calls you to something, He will equip you. And NO you do not need a college degree or teaching certificate to teach your own children. The myriad of curriculum choices available these days and the world we live in where anyone can learn anything with all of the information available to us has changed that thinking. I want my children to ultimately become independent learners anyway. Our world has changed in that if you are able to research, you can learn anything. So absolutely, we are all able to teach our children and to teach them to teach themselves.
  • Will I teach them enough? What is enough really? K-12 and then learning stops? Nope. I have taught them as much as I could as best as I could, knowing there will always be gaps. We never stop learning on this earth and the gaps will only ever be filled in heaven.

So, these are some of the bigger things that kept me awake at night early on. How about you? I would love to hear what worried you and if you still worry or how God has relieved those worries. Share in the comments below!

My new e-course is NOW available! Join many others who have signed up to make the Bible the foundation of their homeschool!

Podcast

Patience and Endurance in an “Insta Culture”// ep 185

this podcast is sponsored by Apologia

Slow is a counter-cultural word these days. In a world that demands quick and instant, the idea of patience and endurance is often looked down upon. But throughout Scripture, it is evident that we all will struggle at some point, and it won’t always be fixed right away-especially during these times when everyone wants things “fixed.” May we as a generation be remembered not for what we suffered but for how we handled it.

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COMING SOON! My **NEW** Homeschooling Book- Homeschooling From Kindergarten to College: Building a Family. Not Just a Transcript.

My Homeschool Resources:

Previous episodes:

An Unlikely Homeschooler

A Homeschool Success Story// ep 182

What Are You Seeking? The Things of Earth or the Things of God? //ep 183

The Cure for All Our Messes

Teach Us to Number Our Days// ep 179

Less Clutter & More Joy. Lessons From Quarantine // ep 178

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