The middle school years are a time of transition in more ways than one. Our kids are changing physically, emotionally, and intellectually at a mind-bending rate. We’ve gotten past the basics of homeschooling, but the high school years and keeping a transcript for coursework have not yet begun. So what happens between the three R’s and calculus? In my experience, the middle school years are a good time for the freedom of delight-directed homeschooling!
Why Delight-Directed Homeschooling Works for the Middle School Years
Our children are gaining independent study skills and general self-confidence during this time. It’s a good time to give them a little leeway into what they choose to study. This can also help guide them into the high school years with a better grasp on what they really want to do with their future.
Delight-directed homeschooling during the middle school years:
- Increases independent study skills
- Encourages a lifelong love of learning
- Inspires initiative in their own education
- Prepares them for choosing high school electives
- Helps them with self-discovery and following God’s call in their lives
- Gives them self-confidence during an awkward transitional time
- Provides a “safe space” to experiment with their personality and explore interests
- Builds a relationship of trust between you and your child
Allowing your child to explore interests with delight-directed homeschooling at this time can really open up the lines of communication between you. When you show each other mutual respect, your tweens and teens are more likely to share their deepest thoughts and feelings with you, not just academics.
I wrote a chapter on Beginning Independence in Middle School in The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas Volume 2. I recommend this book for anyone homeschooling the middle school and high school years, regardless of learning style and method. It’s full of great tips from experienced homeschool moms. You can find it on Amazon in either Kindle or print editions.
I’ve created some free printables to help you with keeping track of your delight-directed homeschooling. You can print out Interest Inventory pages and sit down with your middle schooler to go over ideas that they’d like to study. While you’re there, check out what a day in the life of delight-directed homeschooling looks like for us, what we’re using for our delight-directed, literature-rich homeschool curriculum this year, and read even more in the Ultimate Guide to Delight-Directed Homeschooling.
Make the Most of the Middle School Years
The middle school years don’t have to just be an awkward time that must be endured just to get through it. With some gentle encouragement and guidance, they can be a time that our kids really begin to blossom into who God created them to be. Delight-directed homeschooling gives them a chance to express their ideas while gaining the skills that will do them well long into the future.
What delight-directed studies does your middle schooler enjoy?
Sara is a homeschool mom to three girls from ages 8-15. She’s been blogging at Embracing Destiny since 2008, sharing ideas for creative learning, purposeful living, and delight-directed homeschooling. You can find her on Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook. She is also the owner/editor of The Homeschool Post.