C+ for Planning

3 Sep

Homeschooling year-round is tough.  I allotted three weeks to review, assess,  and purchase curriculum, clean and re-organize the classroom, gather the necessary supplies and prepare myself mentally and emotionally for the upcoming school year.  Three weeks sounded sufficient.  Then real life happened: a family member visited for one week, we chose to take a last-minute vacation and I stole one week to be still, relax and read.

Now, I’m beginning to panic.  I am not ready!

At the last minute, I discovered a terrific resource, The Core Knowledge SequenceA homeschooling mother and speaker at the Heart of the Matter 2010 conference, Karin Katherine, recommended the site and urged attendees to take advantage of the free downloads.  Once I saved the preschool and K-8th resources to my hard drive, I made a bee-line for the fourth grade core requirements.  And anxiety gripped me.

I decided in July to continue our current history and science textbooks since we didn’t complete all of the lessons.  Then I read the core scope and sequence resource and realized that my oldest should be learning the middle ages and the American revolution as well as the human body and chemistry.  Yikes!

I chose to use the core scope and sequence recommendations as an important road map.  While I don’t want to box us in, I also don’t want my daughter to struggle at taking the required standardized tests because we didn’t follow the general core competencies for her grade level.

Thankfully, another mother sent me an email newsletter highlighting Pandia Press’ R.E.A.L. (Read, Explore, Absorb, Learn) Science Odyssey and History Odyssey.  Her thorough review of R.E.A.L. Science (and yes, it includes the human body!) aided me in choosing our next curriculum.  Praise God that Pandia Press offers a free “try before you buy “ so we can critique the beginning science and history lessons and decide if this is the appropriate route for us.

So, here I am, waiting for additional textbooks and we are scheduled to begin our new school year on Tuesday!  Sometimes I work well under pressure – like frantically cleaning the classroom and guest room before my mother visited – but the current time crunch has me stressed and questioning my ability. 

I am trying to accept a C+ for my planning effort and not an F.  I understand that I can’t call myself a failure if I didn’t have all the information.  And in the darkest hours, I also understand that the negative whispers belong to Satan. 

When these doubts fester, I fall to my knees and pray.  Yesterday afternoon, I escaped to my room, fell to the floor and begged God to give me strength and to cleanse my mind of the negativity.  Only Jesus Christ can make a believer feel so much peace in the midst of anxiety and heartache!  Praise Him for all he does for me.  I want to please Him in my efforts.  I can accomplish this by praying, reading His word and ignoring Satan’s plea for me to take the easy road and quit. 

I must always remember that light conquers the dark.  While I may not earn an A for planning and organizing, my intentions for honoring Him in our Four Hearts Homeschool are honest and good. 

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