Monday Meditations: What Brings You Joy?

What brings you homeschool joy?
We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives… not looking for flaws, but for potential.
— Ellen Goodman

The New Year’s resolution is a time-honored tradition, but it’s not always the best way to look at our homeschool lives. The idea of a resolution is to find something you can change, something you can improve, something you can make better or smarter or more efficient. And sure, those are things worth thinking about — but sometimes it just makes more sense to think about what’s working well and look for ways to get more of that in your everyday routine.

What brings you homeschooling joy? I know I’m always saying this, but one of the best pieces of homeschool advice I got when we started homeschooling a decade ago was to keep a joy journal, to write down three great things about every homeschool day. I’ve ended every day that way since my now-junior was in 2nd grade by writing three good things in my homeschool joy journal. (I’m on my third Moleskine now.) There have been lovely days where choosing just three things has been hard, when I write pages. And there have been challenging days where I had to stretch my idea of “good things” to come up with three things to write about. Flipping back through the pages, I see what’s made magic in our homeschool over the years: reading together, my willingness to wait instead of pushing, letting projects and subjects sprawl outside my planned boundaries.

And when it comes time to start a new year — a fresh slate — I know where to start. Not with new structures and routines and curricula but with more of what we already love. Instead of resolving to do something new or focusing on what’s not so great, I can build my goals around joy — and reap the benefits of that happiness all year long.

Food for thought

  • What brings you joy in your homeschool? 

  • How do you make time to appreciate the good parts of your everyday homeschool life?

  • How could you include more of what makes you happy in your homeschool life this year?