Home-Scholé Transformation

5 Benefits Teaching from Rest Brought to Our Homeschool

Whenever you start a new venture in life it’s always helpful to do a cost-benefit analysis. What will be my cost compared to the benefit I gain? When I started going down the scholé path and learning about the concept of teaching from rest, I definitely had to decide if the cost of my time and energy to learn and implement a new teaching philosophy with my children and in our homeschool was worth it. I can definitively say, after about 18 months of schooling this way, it absolutely is! 

Peace of Mind

I’ve written before about how a homeschool crisis a couple of years ago started me looking for a better way to run our homeschool. I came from a place of doubt and worry to one of having peace of mind about what my children are learning and the direction that I want to take with their future education. Teaching from rest helped me to realize that some of my wishes for their education were unattainable (teaching them everything they’d ever need to know) and unrealistic (make them love and enjoy every subject). Now I can have peace of mind about our homeschool because I know I want them to have feasted on truth, beauty, and goodness when our time of home education ends. I don’t feel the burden to cover every base, but to make sure the bases I do cover are done well.

 Joy in the Process
Before scholé the learning environment in our home was a pretty tense one, lots of reminders to hurry, exasperation on my part, and frustration from the children. Now that we have started to reap the benefits of teaching from rest, the learning process has taken on an entirely different tone. Most days we can all sit back and enjoy the ride of learning. We can wallow in the process of discovery and discussion. My children and I are relearning how to learn together in a way that feels natural and organic while still having structure. It doesn’t mean that I still don’t fall into bad patterns at times or that we all sit around and hold hands while reviewing Latin vocabulary, but the tenure of our days has changed for the better.

Confidence in My Ability
The most often heard comment I hear when people find out that I used to be a public school teacher is, “Homeschooling must be so easy for you!” Yeah, right. Give me a room of eighth grade students, hand me a history textbook, and I’m your girl. Place my own child in front of me who’s struggling with math or learning to read, and I’m just as terrified as any other homeschool parent. Teaching from rest has helped me to become more confident in my ability to teach my own child. Not because I have a super human teaching power now, but because it helped me focus on the spiritual Power that I have to fill in the gaps where my own confidence falls short. Too many times I forgot that this is not a solitary endeavor, it is a joint work between myself and God. I bring all I have to the altar where He takes it and turns my meager ability into something great within my children.

Customization in Education
Once I let go of my doubts and fears, found my confidence, and began enjoying the process of learning again, scholé really opened my eyes to the possibility of stepping outside the box and teaching my children as individuals, or in Charlotte Mason’s words, teaching my children as “the born persons” that they are. The process of customizing our children’s education is where homeschooling really shines above and beyond what public and private schools can offer. Many times we let doubts and lack of confidence tie us to standards and keeping up with the Homeschool Jones’ instead of teaching the children we have. An education of rest and leisure doesn’t mean less rigorous, but it definitely means more connected to the child.

Understanding My Role
I once felt all of the pressures on my shoulders to make sure my children were successes. I mean, if they never learn about George Washington or how to balance a chemical equation there is no one to blame for an educational oversight except you. This pressure manifested itself in how I taught. It was very much a system of “listen to me because I am your teacher” instead of learning alongside my children and listening to what they had to say as well. As teaching from rest became more entrenched in my thoughts I slowly found myself taking time to follow rabbit trails with the kids, to listen to what they thought Emily Dickinson was trying to convey in her poem, or just to enjoy a good book together. I dropped the authoritative draconian model and adopted a more mentor and fellow learner model which definitely made our days more restful and leisurely.

I feel like I need to add a caveat at the end of this post to keep things real. It is a very rare day {like maybe once} that I find all of these things in our homeschool at one time. Let’s face it, life happens, kids have attitudes, mom has hormones and most days I fall so far short that I would be disqualified from a long jump competition. The freeing aspect of restful teaching is that it no longer burdens me as much as it did. I keep working at it. I keep reaching for that goal. My encouragement comes in seeing the fruit of my pursuit in our homeschool. So please don’t think that I have it all together and our homeschool runs like a well oiled scholé machine. These are the benefits I have found from a poor implementation of the ideal. I can’t even imagine what a homeschool looks like that does it really well!

Curious what my fellow Everyday Scholé bloggers have discovered to be the biggest benefits to them from restful teaching? Just click the links below to find out.


What changes in your homeschool philosophy have brought about the biggest rewards?
Let me know in the comments.

Scholé is Your Homeschool's Fairy Godmother


Once upon a time, there was a homeschool mom, frazzled, worn out, snappy to her children, and generally feeling defeated. Her two stepsisters, Worry and Fear, were constantly making snide comments to her about her effectiveness at educating her children.

“Aren’t you worried that they will fall behind their peers?” questioned Worry.

“Aren’t you afraid that they can’t get into college?” asked Fear.

“Aren’t you worried you are forgetting to teach them something important?” interrogated Worry.

“Aren’t you afraid they are too sheltered?” queried Fear.

The stepsisters were so awful that they even got the townspeople to harass the homeschool mom when she was out and about with her kids. At the market she’d hear, “What about socialization?” At the park someone would ask her, “Are you qualified to do this?”

Every night the homeschool mom would collapse in front of the fireplace out of exhaustion and cry herself to sleep. The next morning she’d wake up determined not to prove Fear, Worry, and the townspeople correct. She purchased curriculum for at least 12 different subjects to make sure she didn’t leave anything out. When she found out what the local schools were doing, she decided to add a couple more subjects she hadn’t thought about. She came up with beautifully regimented schedules to make sure she could cram everything into their day. When the children took too long she would shout, “Hurry up! We still have 5 subjects to complete!” When the children interrupted to relate a story or ask a question, she responded in a brisk manner, “We’ll deal with that later. Right now focus on math.” By the end of the day, the homeschool mom and the children felt stressed, uninspired, and no longer wanted to even be in the same room with each other.

After months of this routine, the homeschool mom walked out into the backyard one evening. She realized that she couldn’t do it anymore. She would have to put the kids in school. She felt she was an abysmal failure and knew she was turning into a tyrannical mother that she didn’t even recognize. As she looked up at the moon and contemplated enrolling the kids on the morrow, she heard the sound of tinkling bells behind her. Turning around, an astonishing sight greeted her!

A tall, statuesque woman dressed in Grecian robes with a laurel wreath crown stood in front of her. She smiled serenely at the homeschool mom, “I have come to assist you in your desire to educate your children. My name is Scholé and I am your homeschool’s fairy godmother.”

“My homeschool has a fairy godmother?” the homeschool mom asked incredulously.

“Absolutely. In fact my name, Scholé, is where your English word school originated. My name’s meaning has long since departed from any form of school that I’ve seen,” smirked the fairy godmother, “but I’m here to help you turn your homeschool into a place of rest and leisure which is what my name means. So tell me, homeschool mom, what would your dream homeschool day look like?”

The homeschool mom proceeded to outline days spent in deep conversation and contemplation, quiet afternoons spent curled up on the couch reading from great books, diving into learning with eagerness, and ending the days feeling pleased and confident.

When she finished her five minute speech, Scholé burst into laughter. “You know this isn’t a fairy tale right? I can’t make every day like that. You are merely human as are your children. You will still have rough days, even bad ones, but I can help you transform your homeschool into something that comes closer to that vision,” promised the fairy godmother.

“Here’s what I can give you. I can help you prioritize the things that are important in this world: truth, beauty, and goodness. I can help you determine what curriculum and books will cultivate those traits in both you and your children. I can help you focus on the end goal, which is not college or perfect scores on a test, but helping your children be the best adults they can be. I can help you silence the voices of those stepsisters of yours by giving you the confidence that even though your school might not look like anyone else’s, you are walking this path knowing that it is not a sprint, but a marathon. I can transform your homeschool days by giving you peace that you are educating your children at their pace and to their strengths despite what the grade level on the book says.”

“Yes,” cried the homeschool mom in despair, “I want that! What do I need to do?”

“You need to throw out what you believe school to be,” answered Scholé, “and learn what teaching from a place of rest is. Not rest meaning that you are doing nothing, but rest in that you are doing everything that needs to be done for the goal of nurturing souls.”

“I will, Fairy Godmother! I will!” asserted the homeschool mom. “And since you mentioned transformation earlier,” she asked sheepishly, “is there any way you could transform me to look like you?”

“Oh, honey, remember this isn’t a fairy tale!” Scholé responded saucily over her shoulder as she glided away to the next homeschool in desperate need of leisure and rest.

I hope you enjoyed my autobiographical description of how I learned about scholé. If you’d like to read some other great definitions of what this teaching from rest and leisurely homeschooling is all about check out my fellow Everyday Scholé blog buddies:

 Do your homeschool days resemble the before or after transformation above?
Let me know in the comments below.


Homeschool Coupons for Back to School

Every year on the day our local public schools start back, we have our very own Not Back to School Party which usually involves eating out for breakfast, a trip to the big city to visit a museum or the zoo, and I try to come up with a fun way to kick off our school year. Last year I created a Homeschool Supplies Scavenger Hunt which the kids LOVED! In fact, the minute they noticed the school supplies being rolled out in the stores, they started asking if we were doing the scavenger hunt again. We had technically already started back to school for the year at that point, so new school supplies had already been purchased and were in use, but I wanted to do another scavenger hunt with them. But what would be the prize at the end?

Since Grace is participating in her first homeschool classes two days a week this year, I will be doing quite a bit of schooling at local libraries with the kids, which obviously means they need some cute backpacks. I’d never bought backpacks for them before, but that seemed like the perfect prize to be waiting at the end of our library scavenger hunt (yes, we’re doing it in the library this year so they can practice some library skills while hunting). Knowing how my kids think, though, the first thing they will do when they find the backpacks is open them expecting something to be inside. I didn’t want to spend more money, so instead I came up with Homeschool Coupons, and they are going to be perfect!

There are 19 coupons in all with two of them being “free” days where your child can choose what to do. The coupons include things like having ice cream for lunch, going bowling instead of having science class, skipping your least favorite subject for the day, etc. I know that the kids are going to have so much fun with these! However to make sure things didn’t get too out of hand, I have a disclaimer on the front of the coupon pack that says only one coupon may be turned in each week, including siblings’ coupons. So my kids are going to have to work together to decide exactly who is getting to use their coupon that week.

I’ve thought of a few ways to use these coupons. I hole-punched ours and put them on a binder ring. I gave each girl their own set of coupons while Levi is getting the four “Your Choice” coupons out of his sisters’ coupon books. You could also take the 19 coupons and divide them among your children so they all have different ones personalized for them. Another way to use these would be for good behavior/attitude rewards. Put all the coupons in a basket and allow your child to draw one out each week if they’ve had good attitude and behavior during school time.

I can’t wait for my kids to get their Homeschool Coupon books in a couple of weeks! And because I love my blog readers, you can download yours right now though; just click on the link below.

What fun things do you do to get your children excited about starting a new homeschool year?