DIY Curriculum: How Do You Inspire Self-Learning in Kids

My mom was a genius at making learning fun. I seem to remember here she’s teaching my baby brother how to be a superhero.

With COVID knocking everyone off their back-to-school game, Anna and I decided to make things easier for parents. So, we picked one of our all-time favorite topics for you this week: DIY curriculum. How do you inspire self-learning in kids? You may be surprised at how easy it truly is!

If you can get your children to teach themselves everyone wins! Teachers, parents, and best of all the kids themselves!

Not only that, but you also equip your kids for success throughout life. Why? Because every truly successful leader is a self-learner. Most leaders read several books a month. Wow! 

So, how do you get your child to that place where they educate themselves?

Anna shared so much more in this episode than I can include in the blog. I hope you will tune in for her thoughts about how offering kids daily—sometimes hourly—choices helps them be better adults. Wow! Powerful stuff! Find this episode and more, here.

DIY Curriculum: A Happy Accident

Do-it-yourself curriculum started accidentally at our house. We were homeschooling and my two oldest kids were gifted in very different ways. On one hand, I share Anna’s visual way of learning and her love of books. She naturally loved all the books, art supplies, and curriculum I collected to inspire her each week.

On the other hand, Ellen and I have complementary gifts. Her audio and tactile learning style baffled me, the un-athletic mom who can’t carry a tune.

For more on how learning styles can create teamwork, rather than disharmony, I recommend Cynthia Tobias’s insight. (You can find our interview with Cynthia here.)

I was scrambling to find ways to engage Ellen’s brilliant mind in math and science where my mind simply felt ill-equipped. For example, the whole dissecting frog things freaked me out. (For courage and inspiration, check out devotionals by Brooke Fricke or Lindsey Bell or Angie Ruark.)

So, out of sheer desperation, I discovered DIY curriculum. You’re going to love how easily DIY curriculum comes together for parents.

To begin your own DIY curriculum adventure, start by embracing a terrific definition of analytical. To raise self-educating kids, your first goal consists of teaching your kids to embrace analysis. Here’s the definition Anna and I like.

Camp Krafve Definition of Analytical

Analytical—willing to forego personal glory, identifying the best ways to serve others.

Critiquing Your Way to Creativity

“Wanting personal glory is what makes us afraid of critique. Identifying the best way to serve others ties in so well to the idea of critique and how it stimulates creativity,” Anna says. “I just love this definition of analytical. It’s just so thrilling to me.”

Anna suggests critique as a proven technique all art teachers use to teach their kids to think. Honestly, I was surprised when Anna brought this up. I think of critique and criticism as similar enough to make me very uncomfortable.

“Whether it’s music or written word, like poetry, or in my case, visual arts, critique is what drives creativity in a classroom,” explains Anna. She notices it with her small children at home, too. 

When kids work on creating art, they naturally want to engage others in their creative process. Kids will just keep bumping into you with their project in hand until you focus on what they’re creating. Children seek confirmation and advice on improvements to their creative projects like puppies seek to play.

“They want feedback,” Anna reports. She says creative projects provide a natural chance to teach kids that feedback should be positive and productive. (For a creative way to educate without leaving your car, click here.)

For Examples of Real Life Analytical Thinkers and How DIY Curriculum looked at our House, click here.

To sign up for our FREE weekly blog jam-packed with encouragemnet on all the topics women ponder in their hearts, click here. 

With so many malicious, destructive falsehoods free-floating in our culture now, liberty demands that we think carefully. (For more on raising liberty-loving kids, click here.)

“Practicing analytical thinking can strengthen your truth filter,” says Anna. “Truth stands scrutiny.” That was our homeschooling motto, which we printed on each homemade student ID card.

“I’ve always loved that idea,” adds Anna, “It freed me up to ask good questions, analyze things, and be unafraid to ask the hard questions.”

Anna and I are so encouraged that you, too, want to raise analytical thinkers who won’t be swept away by every silly idea. Instead, may your children grow to be wise people who consider what is best for others. 

We know you’re behind the scenes forgoing your own personal glory for the sake of your children. We’re really proud of you!

May we pray together?

Dear good Father in heaven, we need Your help. We pray our children and grandchildren make serving others their life’s ambition. That means we need to have the same attitude in our own hearts. Help us, O Lord, to be like Your Son, serving others with unfailing, sacrificial love. Teach us to think analytically and to love Your truth. Thank you for our reading and listening friends who forego personal glory to raise fabulous kiddos. In Jesus/s name. Amen.

We LOVE to hear from YOU!

What’s your funniest education mishap? When has a frustrating situation morphed into a mini-miracle for you? How do you foster creativity and analytical thinking at your house?

Coming Up Next: How to Cope With Miscarriages

Coming soon, the amazing Lindsey Bell offers comfort to moms who’ve had miscarriages. Plus she’ll address the universal nature of pain. Perhaps your heart is broken by your own miscarriage or a friend’s. Lindsey’s devotional book, Unbeaten, tells the story of overcoming pain. Watch here for sweet Lindsey!

Additionally, if you love devotional books, you’re going to love the new one out by my friend and math genius, Angie Ruark. So watch for her interview coming soon! (For more Fireside Talk Radio episodes, click here.)

I’ll share my interview with the amazing Sandra Beck–Social Media Guru and my dear friend. Sandra asks all the questions and I’m the GUEST! Pray for me.

Also, I’m excited–and a little overwhelmed–to share what people are saying about my upcoming book, The Well: The Art of Drawing Out Authentic Conversations.

Abba’s Answers and Hands Full

Don’t Forget: Abba’s Answers is out! I have a story in it along with dozens of other inspiring stories. If you are looking for encouragement or a different kind of devotional via story-telling, you’ll love this book. I highly recommend it as a gift. (For more, click here.) Order your copies of Abba’s Answers here.

Also, I’ve already pre-ordered my copies of Hands Full which is coming out any minute. Brooke Frick’s book makes a delightful gift, especially for any mom who feels overwhelmed (and don’t we all sometimes!!)

Cathy Krafve, Columnist, Speaker, Blogger, Podcaster, and Christian Writer, invites your stories, ideas, and questions at CathyKrafve

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A Semi-retired Mom, Queen of Fun, and Coffee Cup Philosopher Cathy Krafve pulls in exciting guests from all walks of life who rejoice in deeply spiritual truths.

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