Your Homeschool Table – What are you Serving?

Homeschooling can be a bit like planning the menu and setting a table before our families. We all have a deep desire to make it an appealing, nutritious, and satisfying meal that EVERYONE will enjoy.

I may need to remind you, not everyone at your table likes the same things…. I know it’s almost comical to say it. OF course, they don’t!

My earlier homeschool table looked a bit like a medieval feast - with HUGE dishes of steaming hot math problems, and well-cooked portions of language arts. Since I’ve never been one to be a minimalist in the food area, so I also heaped on the delectable side dishes of leafy green science covered with thick creamy sauces of history and geography. Not to mention a variety of spicy additions to the table like Spanish, Latin, and Greek - just to flavor it all.  Of course, no one would want to miss out on any of the delicious desserts of delight-driven unit studies! There was so much to choose from, and I didn’t want to miss any of it!

All this curriculum consumption left my students sitting at our homeschool table, stuffed like a Christmas goose but not savoring a single bite! The table was full, and the meal was certainly “meaty”. A single glance at their faces told me that this wasn’t what they were hungry for!

Over time, our homeschool table evolved into more of a fast-food buffet at the kitchen counter during their high school days.  We threw out some quickly microwaved math with online grading, some co-op concocted literary analysis, and generous helpings of college dual credit classes.  We ate it while on the run to activities, sports, and part-time jobs.  We forgot how to even set the table and family meals gathered sitting down all together became a distant memory.

Lately, we’ve been re-discovering the delights of homeschooling (and eating) together.  But, not with super-sized portions, the hurry, and the over laden table.  Instead, we are learning to put a little less on our plates, while we linger a little longer and enjoy the company. 

We’re also tuning into what each of our children really need to have to function at their prime.  For instance, if I eat a bunch of carbs and sugar - I’m a complete mess.  Likewise, not all our children need to learn the same things at the same time.  Some students may be ready for academic challenges, but some may benefit more from time spent developing deep family connections. It’s the beauty of the homeschool table, we get to choose what is best for them to consume! 

We are re-learning how to set the table in our learning as well.  We are discovering the delight of days spent together with a less hurried approach. We are taking turns preparing and cooking the meals - and everyone is learning new life, kitchen, and study skills as we do it! 

We are making wiser choices with which subjects satisfy without leaving us stuffed. We streamlined our school schedule to make sure we are meeting our educational and our emotional needs.  We have been realizing that we can experiment with different textures and flavors of learning, like internships and building projects with true satisfaction. We are consuming less and savoring each bite more. 

In homeschooling, and in life, sometimes LESS is MORE.  This is what we have been discovering lately around our table, and aren’t most of the best lessons in life learned around a table?




“Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.” - Isaiah 55:2