Well, it's that time of year again. All of us homeschooling moms are flipping through catalogs, clicking away on the internet, and chatting up our friends on one topic: CURRICULUM. Everything that didn't work last year is fresh in our minds, and all those beautifully enticing books are calling our names. We have big plans to catch up in areas we feel we've lost ground, and look forward to new endeavors and a fresh start.
It feels so good to let go of those old books. We've looked at them for too long, and their tattered covers and marked up pages are signs of a year well spent. But a new year is coming soon, and the possibilities are endless.
As Catholic homeschoolers, we have so many options to choose from, of curricula that bring the goodness of our Faith and strong academics into our homes. This is such a blessing, but it can also be a curse. It's so easy to doubt what we're doing, to fall victim to the "grass is greener" mentality. In reality, living our Faith comes from our hearts and our actions, not our school books, and that's what is most important in our children's lives. The fact is, I could choose to teach my children from any of these good Catholic curriculum providers, and it would be fruitful. If we're teaching and living our Faith, and keeping our academic standards high, if we're instilling a strong moral compass in their hearts, and letting them be kids, then we're doing our job, no matter where we order our books from.
So this year, instead of spending hours on websites and blogs, cleverly piecing together the perfect combination of materials for my children, I decided to go back to my roots: Seton.
It's where we started in this homeschool journey, and it works for us. And if it's not broken, why am I always trying to fix it? We're doing straight-up full enrollment for the oldest three: Blake - 7th grade, Owen - 4th grade, Peyton - 2nd grade. I'll be piecing together Kindergarten for Oliver, with the materials I have, including the Catholic Children's Treasure Box series.
I can't express how good I feel about this decision. How right it feels to take some of the pressure off of myself, and let go just a little. I think we beat ourselves up too much on the idea that there's always something that might be better than what we're doing. It might be more creative, more fun, more reverent, cheaper, easier... maybe so, but what am I losing in the process of chasing it down?
I have the utmost respect for those mothers who are able to wrap their brains around the grand scope that is each child's educational needs, and put together a year's worth of studies to meet them. I've just accepted that I am not one of those mothers, and my time is better spent elsewhere, while Seton does the planning for me. It's good to accept my limitations and feel good in my own homeschooling skin!