Joy — it’s such a teeeeny little word. Why is it so hard sometimes?!
Joy is something I want our homeschool days to be full of. I want to be full of joy. I want my children to experience the joy of learning. — I’m not overlooking the fact that there will be very UNjoyful moments, but I want to do my best to put the JOY into our day.
To do that… that means that *I* need to be joyful.
And if you asked me, outside of school, if I enjoy homeschooling I’d say “yes.” If you asked if I find joy in it, I’d still probably say “yes.” Or at least respond with a “most of the time.” But the truth is that *IN* the regular daily moments of schooling.. I find it hard to hold on to the joy. I get worn down by the interruptions, talking out of turn, not listening to directions, whining and bickering, complaining and dawdling. I get frustrated when I feel like they’re dragging their feet and dwelling in bad attitudes and make school work even more UNenjoyable than it has to be. I feel let down with I’m trying to get to a story or a craft or a project and the squabbling and the not following directions is sucking all the joy out of it.
The tediousness that is parenting sometimes sucks away my joy like a black hole.
But the truth is… I let it.
And there’s really only ONE source of true joy. And it isn’t found in obedient children, perfect crafts or excellent homework. It doesn’t only exist when the conditions are right. In fact, most of the time we mistake joyfulness for happiness. I can maintain a modicum of joy in my life even when I am not pleased or happy with the current circumstances. Actually, I can maintain joy DESPITE being very unhappy with the way my child is behaving in a certain moment.
But I have to first be filled. No, I have to daily be filled. And that’s the ticket. And then my joy can overflow and spread to my children because our attitude is contagious. We are the thermostats of our home, we mothers and wives and hometeachers. We set the atmosphere. And we can teach our children the difference between happiness and joy for themselves. If I keep looking to be filled with joy by the things around me, I’m going to keep getting disappointed, my well is going to keep running dry. If my joy overflows from being filled with the joy of Christ, it will never run dry.
Do I enjoy homeschooling? YES.
ALL the time? NO.. but I’m working on it. 😉
This post is a part of the ABC’s of Homeschooling by Dawn @ 5 Kids and a Dog.
You can read all of my ABC posts here:
- All Year
- E & F ~ “Everyone Together” and “Flexibility”
- Housework & Homework
Well said! I totally hear you on the bickering while setting up the crafts….finding certain pages to print out….etc. I know that I personally need to be more intentional about having everything set up ahead of time.
Visiting you from the HHH. btw, it says on your site that your CommentLuv plugin would like to be updated. =)
Excellent post. Very reflective and encouraging view of homeschooling, and how to aim for a joyful learning environment. It’s very true that one needs to be filled daily – to be content and joyful – in order for that attitude to be picked up by children.
Like anything, homeschooling has its ups and downs. The bickering is hard, and I really hear you about the interruptions! DS8 is on the Spectrum and can’t read cues. He doesn’t understand interrupting, so he interrupts all the time. I have learned to find the Joy in his interruptions because most of the time the interruptions are on topic. That is actually HUGE!
Joy. So essential to our days, and so easy to forget to seek through Jesus. And so easy to lose when our kids inevitably bicker and get off track. I love how you brought this post all together! 🙂
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