It’s time to start thinking about next year! Time to write your homeschool goals. Marilyn is our local homeschool guru on goal writing. Here is her classic post on creating homeschool goals.
Writing Homeschool Goals
Just as there is no one right way to homeschool, there is not one right way to write your homeschool goals, but here are some goal setting guidelines. Adapt them to your purposes:
1) Think about what you want for your child by the time he or she graduates from high school.
You may want her to go to college. You may even want or need him to get a scholarship to help pay for said college.
You may not think college is in your child’s future, but you probably do want her to be able to support herself and move out on her own. That would mean that your child would have a marketable skill.
You probably want your child to be able to support a family, prepare a meal, have friends, be serving in church, balance a checkbook, and bring your grandchildren back to see you!
These are all long-term homeschool goals and can be written as such.
2) Once you have your long-term homeschool goals written, think about what steps you need to take this school year to bring you closer to these goals. These will be your short-term homeschool goals.
If my child is in ninth grade and my long-term goal is being able to balance a checkbook, I might need him to be able to balance equations accurately. This would bring him a step closer to my goal.
If I want her to be able to study her Bible, perhaps working on inferential skills would be a good start.
3) Once you have your long-term and short-term homeschool goals, think about the “how” of accomplishing them. What is my plan for this year that will bring my child closer to this goal?
– Do I need to complete algebra?
– Do I need to study another culture?
– Do I need to teach her about proper nutrition and exercise?
4) When you set your goals, don’t focus entirely on academics.
You can include physical, social, and spiritual goals.
When my boys were little, I included a goal of being able to “handle a variety of social settings”. For years, it seemed that the short-term goal was accomplished if they burped and said “excuse me” instead of “that was a good one”. As they matured it included things like being able to handle a job interview, knowing how to dress appropriately for an occasion and proper etiquette on a date or on the dance floor at a wedding. For basic social skills check out our Social Skills guide.
5) Remember as you set goals that each child and family is unique.
We can glean from each other, but it is detrimental to compare ourselves to others. Once you have your written goals, you can use them to help you decide which curriculum or activities fit for you. And, you will be surprised to see how much you accomplish each year!