Four Age-Old Truths About Educating Children
Every year, I send a survey to homeschooling parents. Last year, I heard back from 75 parents and I wanted to share a not-so-surprising discovery I found in their responses…
Personally, this confirms everything I know about educating children that I’ve learned from the past 30 years of teaching. And it affirms my current services I offer here at Art of Homeschooling…
Which made me realize – these are age-old truths. These are the facts of what works well when raising and teaching our young ones.
Here’s the question I asked:
What are the top 2-3 things that are working well right now in your homeschool?
I received very touching responses. And guess what?! There were some definitive trends in what’s working out there on the frontlines of home education.
So here are the top four areas where homeschool educators find their peace, again and again. It all boils down to these universal truths!
Four Age-Old Truths About Educating Children
- Having a Rhythm
- Reading Stories
- Doing Hands-on Arts & Activities
- Spending Time in Nature
YES. I resonate with this. This is the good stuff!
So I wanted to take just a moment to share WHY these four age-old truths are so reliable and what you can take from this into your life today.
1) Having a Rhythm
Having a rhythm simply means having some flow and design to your days, weeks, and seasons.
When you establish a pattern to life, where activities become something your family can depend on, everyone begins to fall under the spell of the repeating rhythm.
It’s really the best place to start. Having a rhythm calms chaotic days while creating a foundation for further developments in your homeschool. Build off of a simple rhythm.
Rhythm also contributes to a sense of predictability and I believe this is why children respond so well to having a rhythm. Children are vulnerable due to being small and young. And so developmentally, they rely on us to provide them a sense of safety and security.
2) Reading Stories
“There’s always room for a story that can transport people to another place.” ~ J.K. Rowling
Whether you want to capture your child’s attention, inspire them into action, or just enjoy being on the same “page” together – you can tell or read stories to reach these simple goals.
Stories work so incredibly well for children because they speak to the child’s imagination, and children are wired to imagine, create, and play. It’s like speaking their truest language.
Storytelling is really a crucial element to any good educational situation. It’s what works and why almost all content is purposely brought through a story with the Waldorf approach.
Stories help to deliver content and lessons, because they draw in the child’s attention first, opening the way for teaching lessons secondarily. Stories help us connect and remember.
3) Doing Hands-on Arts & Activities
Children need to move and also move things around! Almost all teachers know kids need something to do.
So as their teachers, we need to give our children hands-on activities to keep them engaged in learning, but also to help them explore the world we live in.
What works so well about integrating the arts and hands-on projects into subjects like social studies and the sciences is that they engage multiple senses and actually facilitate better learning than if you only approach teaching through one modality.
Children thrive on variety, so we want to supply a variety of ways to engage their hands.
Ideally, the more variety of activities and arts exploration the better. Manipulating art materials or doing science projects stimulates children in very positive ways. Children crave variety.
4) Spending Time in Nature
Ah the joys of the sun, a leaf, the wind, and catching a frog… Nothing like time in nature to reset stress levels down to zero and reconnect with you soul.
And that’s exactly why time in nature works for children. Because they inherently do not want to be stressed and out of alignment with their soul!
Spending time in nature addresses many of your family’s needs at once. It reconnects you to each other, it gives you fresh air, it helps you slow down and re-calibrate to the rhythms of Mother Earth, and it can easily coordinate with a homeschooling lesson.
The truth is, we’re a part of this planet! We belong here, and actually going out to a field, a forest, a lake, or even your backyard just meets this human need to feel that we belong to something bigger.
Plus, awe and wonder lead to keen observation which all lay the groundwork for the study of the sciences.
Taking These Truths Into Your Life
I’ve been exploring these Four Age-Old Truths about educating children for a while now, in conversations with parents, in articles on my blog and episodes on the Art of Homeschooling Podcast. And I’d love to share some of these resources with you.
So that you can get back to the basics and have fun raising your kids!
If you **click on the images below** you’ll be taken to a few Art of Homeschooling blog articles or podcast episodes sharing tips, techniques, and suggestions to help you find more peace and joy on your homeschooling journey.
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