“I cannot teach anybody anything; I can only make them think.” -Socrates
Living an Inspired Education is neither unschooling nor is it classical; it is inspired. Yes, it’s a mixture of unschooling, Montessori, leadership, classical and eclectic. In fact, what your Inspired Education looks like and another family’s Living an Inspired Education may appear to be completely different. This is how I created it. It’s not a long list of rules and parameters, but rather fluid methods and procedures that allow for adaptability and flexibility. This enables families to acquire an excellent education while still maintaining their own unique purpose and personalized way of living.
When we focus on shedding our “schoolish” ways of the past inspiration is what follows. Implementing a Living an Inspired Education model for your homeschool, you will need to create more flow for your children to deepen their learning. Not only will you be fulfilling this need in your children but for yourself as well. This increases your quality of living, individually and as a family.
“I have never let me schooling interfere with my education.” –Mark Twain
As our life has sped up with instant access to the world via the Internet, it’s easy for our children to fall into the busyness of every day, coming and going but never really challenged, never allowed to pursue what’s relevant to them, unable to concentrate or focus, engage or be heard.
As parents it’s our responsibility to provide, guide and then step aside so our children don’t miss out on the depth every day has to offer.
Here are 4 practical ways to deepen learning in your homeschool:
- Challenge and Support. It’s easy for children to get bored and distracted when they are not challenged. If they are challenged too much it can cause anxiousness or even quitting all together. By continually seeking to move up a level or work just above current abilities creates the prime conditions for growth which is on the border of challenge and support.
- Relevancy. We are always choosing in the direction of our highest values, whether we are conscious of it or not. When we move in another direction or get distracted away from our highest values, then we feel stress, disinterest and can’t engage. By tying lessons, basic academics and all studies to be relevant to the student’s values and life there will be a greater engagement and interesting increasing results dramatically.
- Concentration. Younger children will have bursts of concentration and as they move into more in-depth academics they will need the time and space allowing them to reach a deeper point of concentration. Older children will need longer periods of time to concentrate as they are working on advanced studies. Keeping your schedule flexible and encouraging periods of concentrated studies for uninterrupted time will take your child to the real rewards concentration offers. This is where the learning dives to the depths of discovery, understanding and ultimately wisdom.
- Engage. Research shows that hands-on activities engage students to learn more and retain more long term. Find projects that match your child’s interests and provide all of the materials necessary to complete the project. This can be done together; from concept to completion. Allow them to express themselves uniquely whether it’s using recycled materials to build a big project, fine art or even solving a problem. Again, this is where space and time are imperative to reach the state of being engaged.
“Education is not a product: mark, diploma, job, money –in that order; it is a process, a never-ending one.” –Bel Kaufman
Parents Inspired to Action:
- Ask your child what he wants to accomplish. Help them find the sweet spot according to their ability and work together to create manageable steps. Re-adjust along the way as necessary.
- Know your highest values. Know each of your children’s highest values. Always tie their skills back to their highest values pointing out how relevant it is to their life.
- Engage older children into discovering their highest values while you are mentoring them.
Children Inspired to Action:
- All children think differently and process information differently. Be open to creating goals and schedules together in a way that supports them individually.
- Don’t forget to laugh. Laughing engages kids and often times takes away the stress that might be felt when challenged. Speak their language and walk beside them
- Look for hands-on activities for each of your children. Allow each child to express their self in the way that is most comfortable. Whether it’s through art, solving problems or making projects self expression should always be encouraged.
What ways have you inspired your children to deeper learning? Have you noticed what they are doing when they are fully engaged? Please share by leaving a comment below.