We invest most of our time into our children’s development and education. I am a strong believer in continuing YOUR education and development throughout adulthood. Read on to find effective adult learning strategies to help you educate yourself and balance parenthood all at the same time!
Invest in yourself
Continuing your own education is a huge investment in yourself. We should never stop learning, and persisting in this endeavour will bring its own rewards. You’ll feel the excitement of learning something new and gaining new understandings. You’ll appreciate knowledge so much more than when you were in school – trust me!
Find your interest
Let’s be honest, it’s been a while since you focused on something purely for yourself. So spend a bit of time re-discovering your interests. The things you loved in school may not be as thrilling to you now, and the subjects you shied away from may now fill you with wonder.
Find your learning style
If you’re a home educator, you’re probably familiar with the different styles of learning. You may have a child who will sit for hours with an audiobook and worksheets. Or you may have an extremely active child who learns through games, obstacle courses and physical activity.
But how does your brain thrive? Remember, the way you learnt in school might not work for you now. There are plenty of quizzes and surveys online to help you find your preferred learning style, but I found these two were the best ones:
Ah, your commonplace book. I get excited just thinking about the possibilities of a commonplace book. But what is it?
A commonplace book will be your companion through your learning journey. You don’t have to keep highlighted study notes, neatly separated by dividers in lovely shiny binders (although you absolutely can if that’s what you want!). All you need is a notebook, digital or hard copy – the choice is completely yours!
Whenever you read something interesting that you want to remember, place it in your notebook. If something you read or learn has inspired you or made you think, then write out your thoughts. Don’t be afraid to copy diagrams or sketches! They don’t have to be perfect because they’re for your eyes only!
Here are some pages from my own commonplace study book:
Feeling inspired? Check out these AMAZING commonplace books!
Develop a reading list. Whether you listen to your books, read websites and blogs, or indulge in a full-length book, a reading list is an essential tool for learning.
Ticking off each book or text you explore will not only fill you with a small sense of achievement, but it will also show you how far you have come and spur you on to keep going.
Whenever you find a non-fiction book or text you feel intrigued by (or fiction if you’re choosing to study literary theory!) note it down on your reading list.
It doesn’t matter how quickly you get through the list; that isn’t the point. It matters that you keep going, no matter how slowly. Believe me, you will feel inspired, energised, and motivated the more you read.
Curious to know what I’m reading? Check out my Goodreads book lists!
Sacred study time
Probably the most important strategy in this post: Your Sacred Study Time. This time is non-negotiable. Fit it into your schedule somewhere. (I talked about how to organize your schedule with a killer to-do list here.)
This doesn’t have to be a significant amount of time, it just has to be consistent. Ten minutes of reading every night just before you go to sleep is better than hours of devoted study one day and nothing the next.
Learn to prioritise YOUR time to grow. Don’t keep putting it off until you have more time – just re-jiggle the time you DO have.
And keep it SACRED.
Join in with your kids
Now, if you’re homeschooling, this is the easiest strategy to employ. The kids’ study time is also YOUR study time. Now, I don’t mean you try to do your own thing whilst they do theirs, because you can get frustrated with the constant, inevitable interruptions.
What I mean is – study what the kids are studying. When you’re preparing resources and reading lists for them, go deeper. Get a better understanding of the topic you’re trying to teach them. And when it’s school time, you join in the resources, watch the documentary, make the model, fill out the worksheet.
Have FUN learning with your child and not only will it enrich your own study times, but your child will develop a deep love of learning based on positive bonding moments with you.
Finally, online courses. There is absolutely no shortage of courses to take from the comfort of your own home. The two places I have the most experience with are:
Reasonably priced, these websites offer a vast range of courses depending on your interests.
There are also a number of courses I am saving up for on the MasterClass website (Neil Gaiman and James Patterson writing courses!!).
A lot of bloggers and influencers are hosting courses related to their own expertise. Participating in their courses is a great way to not only show your support but to also learn something from someone you truly admire.
Here are some of the online presences I gain inspiration from everyday and who are also offering online courses for anyone to benefit from:
Rebecca Spooner – HomeschoolOn
Rebecca hosted a Start Your Blog course which is the main reason Our Daily Wonders exists! I can’t recommend it highly enough. I tried MANY blogging courses, but this is the one that actually made it happen. Rebecca guides you step-by-step through the process of setting up your blog and everything else that comes with blogging life. Find all her courses here.
Eman Ismail – InkHouse
Eman is awesome. This girl knows how to hustle and she motivates me every, single day. I remember her sitting on my sofa telling me the things she wanted to do and the work that inspires her. Seeing those dreams come to fruition is nothing short of awe-inspiring. Eman offers copywriting courses and workshops, which is a skill anyone in business or blogging should have. She is currently offering a 3-hour online blogging workshop! Find all the details here.
Dr Gemma Elizabeth – OurMuslimHomeschool
Probably my main inspiration when I started homeschooling, Dr Gemma’s blog and YouTube channel gave me the much-needed confidence boost and information I needed to get started. Now Gemma is working on a super-duper homeschool course! Click here to stay updated. Like all things from OurMuslimHomeschool, you know it will be amazing!
Ronni – Multicultural Motherhood
Weronika is a Speech and Language specialist who home educates her multicultural children with the intentions of them being bilingual. An invaluable resource to parents of multicultural children, Multicultural Motherhood is a refreshing and welcome online presence. She has provided a number of courses in the past, including Raising Talkers and Emergent Literacy and Beyond. Stay updated on her courses here.
What will you learn?
Let me know in the comments what area you’re interested in and how you prioritise your Sacred Study Time!