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Join host Pam Barnhill and homeschooling mom Angela Britt in this episode as Angela reveals the transformative impact of embracing consistency in her homeschooling journey. From shifting her mindset to achieving accountability, Angela shares valuable insights and practical tips for finding balance and building trust with her children.

Tune in to gain inspiring perspectives and actionable strategies for enhancing your homeschooling experience through intentional consistency.

You won’t want to miss Angela’s journey and the powerful difference that consistency can make in your homeschool.

Listen to the Podcast

Pam Barnhill [00:00:02]:
Feeling overwhelmed with homeschooling? Wondering how you can streamline your day and boost your family’s success. Welcome to 10 Minutes to a Better Homeschool. I’m Pam Barnhill, fellow homeschooler and your guide to quick, effective solutions. In each episode, we dive into practical, actionable tips that fit your busy life. Whether it’s curriculum choices, time management, or creative teaching methods, We’ve got you covered. And the best part? Hi there, and welcome to this episode of the 10 Minutes to a Better Homeschool podcast. I am excited to be joined today by a member of our community, Angela Britt. Angela is a homeschooling mom who’s been Homeschooling for quite a while now.

Pam Barnhill [00:00:41]:
She’s graduating her 1st this year, but she has somewhat struggled with consistency through the years. Now just last year, about a year ago, she took our homeschool consistency boot Pam, and it made such a difference in her Homeschool, she’s been singing its praises this year, and I thought it would be so much fun to have her come on and share her story with us. So we are getting ready to open up the homeschool consistency boot camp next week, and we would love for you to just listen to how this has changed Angela’s life and see if it might be something that would help Your as well. If you think it would, be sure to check out the show notes for a link to Time Homeschool at c boot camp, and we would love to see you inside. And now on with the interview. Hi there. I am here today with one One of the members of our community and an alum of our homeschool consistency boot camp, miss Angela Brittt. And, Angela, I’m just gonna let you tell everybody a little bit about yourself and your family.

Angela Britt [00:01:44]:
It’s a delight to be here today with you. I’m so excited. I’m Angela Brittt, and I’ve been homeschooling, I guess, since my first was Your, and he is 18 now. And my youngest is 8 and so I spent 10 years having babies and nursing babies and trying to figure this homeschooling thing out. So I have 3 boys and then 2 girls.

Pam Barnhill [00:02:10]:
Oh, wow. So 5. Okay. So how many are you still homeschooling? Because You’re homeschooling 4 because your oldest is 18. So what are their ages now? Well, he’s still a senior. Okay.

Angela Britt [00:02:21]:
And living at Time. So I’m homeschooling him although he’s doing most of his classes at co op. So really not anything. I guess he’s launched because he spends most of his time working at Chick Fil A.

Pam Barnhill [00:02:35]:
Well, you had mentioned earlier that like he was gone. And so I was like, okay, well, he must be like mine Where he’s already got he’s already moved on, Brittt a senior and then all the way down with the other 4. So

Angela Britt [00:02:46]:
Yes. The 15, 13 Your the girls and then the boys are 11 and 8. So it’s almost like I have 2 schools.

Pam Barnhill [00:02:56]:
Yeah. It really does sound like Like, especially with, like, 2 girls and then 2 boys, it is almost like you have 2 schools. But so much fun and lots of homeschooling still left to do.

Angela Britt [00:03:06]:
It is. It is. I’m excited. I realized I kept having children because I wanted a do over. I didn’t want it to stop. And now that there’s an end inside and as some might say, Especially if your oldest is 8, you might say, well, that’s I still have so many years but I think I realized now, I only have a handful of years.

Pam Barnhill [00:03:25]:
Yeah. Oh, yeah. I’m like way closer than you are and, because you know, my old my youngest is an 8th grader this Your, Gonna be a high schooler next year and I’m like, oh, where did it all go? I I I wanna do over Time. Maybe one day we’ll have some grandchildren and we can, like, help homeschool them. But can you describe what your homeschool is like before you did The consistency boot camp with us.

Angela Britt [00:03:51]:
My friends would say that we unschooled, which meant that We really did our regular life and school was an add on if we had time and everything went perfectly. But most of our days were spent doing chores. We that’s a big value. Work is a value of ours and so we We really are good at that and, they play outside constantly. So they’re always out in the yard and forest and But the table work, the reading lessons, the math lessons, the history only happened if we had outside accountability. And we ran a co op that year or we were taking a particular class. And we also have dyslexia. 3 of my Children have dyslexia.

Angela Britt [00:04:45]:
So that was tough if you’re not really on it and you’re not consistent. And the education, I don’t know. I just I was a teacher. But for some reason, it was an afterthought and we were Busy doing other

Pam Barnhill [00:05:03]:
things. Well, you know, you use a word and I talk about this quite a bit. You use a word that kind of Time Raised a little red flag for me and that was you said if everything was perfect and I know this was a problem that I struggled with is if We got up and got started with our day and something happened and we value work too and we would get chores done and things like that. And then if we reach to the point where I knew the day wasn’t going to follow this perfect schedule that I’ve laid out. If I knew it wasn’t going to be perfect, then I would be Time, Well, we might as well not do it at all. And I struggle with that in a lot of different areas of my life and it wasn’t until I realized that It was perfectionism that was causing this problem in Time, you know. It it wasn’t that I was lazy, It was that I was a perfectionist and if I couldn’t do it perfectly, well, I might as well not do it. That was my mindset, you know, at that point.

Angela Britt [00:05:56]:
And there’s always tomorrow.

Pam Barnhill [00:05:58]:
Yes. There is always tomorrow, except now you have an 18 year old.

Angela Britt [00:06:03]:
Is it right? Yes. Yes.

Pam Barnhill [00:06:05]:
Okay. So I also wanna hit on something else. You said your friends would have described you as an unschooler. I mean, there are lots of people who follow the unschool philosophy and are very Happy with that, but sounds like there was something that wasn’t quite sitting right with you that made you think maybe I need to be a little more consistent.

Angela Britt [00:06:24]:
I taught reading as a teacher because I taught kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade. So that’s what I did. And so the fact that I had children who couldn’t read. It was fine when they were younger because you can say, oh, it’s fine with the 8 year old. It’s still early. Mhmm. And then then they’re 9 and then they’re 10 and then they’re in middle school And they’re wanting to take classes at a co op or something or it’s interfering even with church programs. And I realized That even if you have learning issues, it’s the consistency or the inconsistency That determines your success and and that was my fault.

Pam Barnhill [00:07:10]:
Right. And so how did that make you feel?

Angela Britt [00:07:14]:
Well, I felt like when I was teaching, if a child couldn’t read, it was their learning issue. But when you’re homeschooling, if a child can’t read or It’s the mama’s fault.

Pam Barnhill [00:07:26]:
Yeah. And Your know, I just said like I listened to you talk about how Time painful this was and I said, Right. And how did that make you feel? But I can say that because I was in exactly the same place that you were, you know, and I did feel that pressure. And I’ve told so many people this before and I’ve told my husband this before, like, when they go off to school, if there is a problem there, you can always say, Well, the problem is there, but when you are homeschooling them, you don’t have anybody else to put that problem onto. And I think that’s why Homeschool moms really struggle sometimes with insecurity and am I doing enough and things like that because they do know that, like, in a lot of ways, the buck does stop with us and it feels like an immense pressure. It does to me anyway.

Angela Britt [00:08:17]:
It wasn’t having babies and toddlers or being pregnant all in the middle of that, Wish that stopped now, but I had a lot of excuses that I I gave myself a lot of excuses. And, Yeah. There’s a fine line between excuses and reasons and then and after a while, it was just excuses.

Pam Barnhill [00:08:41]:
Brittt? So what was it that peaked your interest? So you you’re there and you see the consistency boot Pam, you’re already I mean, if you’re anything like I was, you’re Feeling a little bit bad about yourself and a little overwhelmed. Like, why can’t I get this right? Why you know, I was the school teacher for goodness sake. Why can’t I fix this? You know, I used to get up and go to work every day. So why is it so hard to to homeschool every day? What was it about the consistency boot camp that made you think, maybe this is something I need to try?

Angela Britt [00:09:15]:
I think that I had benefited so much from Some of the other trainings and I had a real high trust level. And what I get from Your podcast and in the community and some of the programs that I had already done Time autopilot.

Pam Barnhill [00:09:39]:
Mhmm.

Angela Britt [00:09:39]:
And even the meal Morning, put your meals on autopilot. Time, I knew that they were working and the time of year Is my peak year for getting it done. Other times of the year, I can fall off a little bit. So it’s almost like everything just came together well and I said and going into it, I said maybe maybe it’s It’s the time. Okay.

Pam Barnhill [00:10:06]:
And I I don’t know

Angela Britt [00:10:07]:
that I thought I would be that successful at it.

Pam Barnhill [00:10:10]:
Oh, interesting. Well, what were you hoping to get out of it. What were you hoping it would do for you?

Angela Britt [00:10:18]:
I was interested in the accountability. And I really need outside accountability, like, for my husband. But I’ve never been very successful in necessarily, I don’t know, Time, weight loss accountability, like because I don’t know them. And I can drop out at any time and they don’t know who I am and So but because I had been in the community and And I recognize the names and they recognize my names and it was Plus like I I knew people better and I just felt like I was gonna be a part of a group That I could communicate with and enjoy.

Pam Barnhill [00:11:02]:
Yeah. Yeah. I love that about our community is that Time Your do Get to know each other. You do get to know the other moms and you do kind of get to know some of the places where people are struggling a little bit or, you know, we just have so many wonderful people in our community that Time, oh, you see a question and you’re like, That person’s gonna have an idea. I know that person’s gonna answer. You know, and so you really do feel like you know each other. And I do think that’s important because yeah. You’re right.

Pam Barnhill [00:11:33]:
A lot of times, like, you feel like I can step away from this, but when it’s It’s people you feel connected with because you’re doing the same thing. You’re, you know, you’re homeschooling together. You’re talking to each other about homeschooling. That it’s a it’s a place where You know they’re gonna step up to help hold you accountable. Do you want fewer arguments, less tension, and true excitement during language arts learning? Night zookeeper is the answer. Night zookeeper is a game changing language arts program that takes the stress out of teaching by making it fantastically fun and engaging for your child. The program teaches spelling, Grammar and punctuation, vocabulary, reading and writing through a preplanned language arts curriculum that your child can use independently, freeing you up to focus on other tasks. Knight zookeeper has hundreds of word games, interactive video lessons, and inspiring writing prompts to keep your child engaged all year and boost their confidence.

Pam Barnhill [00:12:35]:
Your child will also get written feedback on their writing from real tutors so you don’t have to be the bad guy. Thousands of homeschool Parents have found success using NightZookeeper to transform their children’s attitudes towards language arts learning. Parents like Ali Midday, one of the member liaisons at panbarnhill.com. Ali’s 3 oldest kids have been using Knight ZooKeeper, and they absolutely love the feedback that they get from the writing tutors and the ability to create their own characters. They are having so much fun. So if you’re ready to say goodbye to the stress of teaching language arts? Give Night ZooKeeper a try. Click on the link in the description to this podcast for a 7 day free trial and 50% off of an annual subscription. How did your homeschool change? So you start the homeschool consistency boot camp and, you know, we have these lessons in there and we start talking about things like Homeschooling is your job and never miss Time.

Pam Barnhill [00:13:39]:
And we give you some tools like the minimum viable day and and other things. And and we make you sign this well, we don’t make you. It’s not like we can hold your feet over the fire. But, you know, we encourage you strongly to sign this promise and commit to the days that you’re going to do school. So what was that like?

Angela Britt [00:13:58]:
A few of the things that were Immediately, out of the gate, Time Changers was And maybe, you know, years into my homeschooling journey, I should have already known that this was my job. But that was just Such a big moment for me. And I realized that I Had not wanted it to be my job even though I signed up for it and I felt like I was excited about it. I don’t I wanted, you know, This committee at church to be the job or or this person calling me on the phone to be my job. I didn’t want that to Homeschooling to be what I did all day. And then when when it dawned on me that I didn’t consider Time my job, then I realized, wait, this is What I want. This is my calling and this is what I value. And this is the place that I have the most influence.

Angela Britt [00:14:57]:
And I’m gonna launch them out into the world and who knows what they’ll be able to do because I’ve invested My time and my energy in them instead of doing something that I was chasing outside of the home. The other thing is that I realized once I started oh, and the never never missed Time, That was great because, like, we were having a good homeschooling day, like, maybe every 5 days. Like, it was it was really Really bad and looking at myself and realizing and being honest with myself and honesty. Brittt honest with myself about how bad it really was. So there was a lot of repenting. Why? Because the course keeps Morning, there wasn’t time for me to dwell there and, like because sometimes excess penance It’s really pride. Yeah. So I had to keep going.

Angela Britt [00:16:02]:
And because there was a lot of quick Wins, which the minimum viable day never missed twice never missed twice. I use in all areas of my life now. Even, like, In the evening, we read the bible as a family and I even thought last night, oh, we missed last night. We gotta make sure we do it tonight. Yeah. And that helps me because like I said, I like external accountability because I feel like I’m not very self disciplined. But That was me disciplining myself last night. So that was wonderful.

Angela Britt [00:16:38]:
Another breakthrough was realizing Once we started and once I had the plan in place and planning is super fun, who doesn’t love the beautiful Plus? But I realized that I was self sabotaging the plan. It wasn’t the children. It wasn’t the phone calls. It wasn’t the fires. I was getting bored with the normal, with the consistency and I was looking Your something to do that was novel. And when I realized, oh my goodness, I’m the one that’s messing this up. Again, that was me. Something that I had to work on.

Angela Britt [00:17:20]:
But the good thing is it’s easier to work on myself than it is on others.

Pam Barnhill [00:17:25]:
Yeah. That’s true. And you’re the only one you could really change. So

Angela Britt [00:17:29]:
Yes. And I kept thinking about that verse in Proverbs that says a wise woman builds home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands. Oh, yeah. That makes me tear up because I I realized that I had Many times, I was the one tearing down our home by chasing after things They don’t matter and I think that prior to this, I had been consistent, but I had been consistent in the wrong things And not in the things that I said were our values and our priorities. And the things that were good and the things that We’re fruitful and moving us forward.

Pam Barnhill [00:18:11]:
Right. Right. You know, it’s so funny because now we are so programmed by, You know, the devices in our hands to go after that quick dopamine hit. And I think a lot of time that spills over into so many other areas of our Time, and I I can totally see it in homeschooling. You know, I have to resist the urge sometimes to Go after that quick dopamine Brittt, and I could see that being something that would keep you jumping. You know? Oh, let me try this Your let me do this. And then it just builds this Pattern of inconsistency because you’re looking for it’s so easy to buy a solution. I’m horrible at that where I’m like, Oh, I have this problem.

Pam Barnhill [00:18:51]:
I’m gonna go spend some money and buy a solution on Brittt. You know? And so, like, just looking for that dopamine hit that comes from making that purchase or changing curriculum. I think that’s another place where moms yeah. Are Time, looking for that dopamine hit there. And so, Yeah. It’s interesting when you brought that up. I was like, oh, yeah. I could totally see that in myself too.

Pam Barnhill [00:19:14]:
So how has the boot Pam changed your homeschool? What difference What differences has it made in your homeschool?

Angela Britt [00:19:23]:
I get up earlier. The sleepy time Calculator Yeah. Has been great. And sleep is kinda my idol. I love sleep. I like learning about sleep. I loved it in college. And I have realized that I need 7 and a half hours of sleep.

Angela Britt [00:19:41]:
And if I’m a little deprived, I need 9 hours of sleep. And so now I don’t feel guilty about when I need 9 hours of sleep, but I also set a Bedtime reminder alarm. Yep. Because you might not always be able to control, Especially if you have littles when you wake up, but you can control when you go to sleep.

Pam Barnhill [00:20:03]:
So what changes have you seen in your kids? How have they responded to all of this. The from the initial, you know, hey, kids, we’re gonna start being more consistent. Help me fill out this tracking sheet to, You know, where you are now and what difference you’ve seen in their Morning.

Angela Britt [00:20:21]:
It was very easy with the little boys because they always want me And they were just excited to have me at elbow first thing in the Morning, which was what children want anyway. But The older ones, especially my oldest daughter who’s 15, she was very leery and I realized through the program that I had no trust with her. And that was another time of self reflection and Repenting and grieving that that I had lost that trust. And and we’re still rebuilding that trust and When it comes to her schoolwork because she needs me Mhmm. And she still needs me at elbow, but I I’m not always there for her like I am for others because she is able to do a lot of independent Work on her own and so she gets pushed to the side sometimes. So I’m excited about I feel like she She sees me being consistent with the younger 2. Yeah. Where the longer I go being consistent, the less and less Push Basket even from teen girls that I get.

Pam Barnhill [00:21:38]:
Yeah. To me, that’s one of the greatest gifts of being consistent in homeschooling is that I stopped Having to answer the question, are we doing school today? And they were only asking that question to begin with because I was so inconsistent with school, You know? And I stopped having to, to fight kind of their their trying everything they can, and, you know, when they’re 9, 10, or 11 years old to weasel their way out of doing school. And I’m not saying that, you know, kids are manipulative. I’m just saying They’re smart enough to take advantage of the situation that comes up and and that’s what they were doing. And now, they just don’t even do that. Nobody ever comes down the stairs and says, Are we gonna go are we gonna do school today? They just know we are, you know. And so they just do it. I won’t say their attitude is always Perfect.

Pam Barnhill [00:22:29]:
I’m not gonna lie to anybody, but it’s a heck of a lot easier than the back and forth dance that we used to do 9 years ago, for sure. So I can definitely I can definitely feel that, going on. Well, Angela, I am so glad that you have seen, some results from the consistency boot Pam, and I’m so glad that you are approaching the this next Session of the boot camp and saying, okay. Maybe I don’t need all over consistency for my whole day, but I have one little piece that needs to be worked on. Because I do think there are great, I’ve done it before with my morning time where I had kind of fallen off of doing morning time. We were still doing school, but we were doing a lot of MVDs and I was like, oh, I’m gonna use this next round of the boot camp to shore up my morning time. So I love the fact that you’ve latched onto that and you said, you know what? I can use it for 1 specific piece of my homeschool day and apply a lot of the same a lot of the same principles. But, So thank you for coming on and talking to me about it.

Angela Britt [00:23:34]:
Thank you so much for having me. This was great.

Pam Barnhill [00:23:40]:
Thank you for tuning in to 10 Minutes to a Better Homeschool. Remember, small changes can make a big impact in your homeschooling journey. If you want more tips and resources to enhance your experience, check out our free homeschool better together community. You’ll find additional tools, guides, and a community of supportive homeschoolers just like you. Visit community.pambarnhill.com to learn more and join us. Until next Time. Keep on homeschooling.

Links and Resources From Today’s Show

Key Takeaways About Consistency

  • Consistency in homeschooling is crucial for success, but it can be challenging to maintain, especially for large families with varying age groups.
  • Homeschooling accountability and community support can significantly impact a parent’s ability to stay consistent and dedicated to the homeschooling routine.
  • The Homeschool Consistency Boot Camp focuses on prioritizing homeschooling as a job and committing to a minimum viable day, which helps instill consistency and build trust with children.
  • Overcoming perfectionism and the urge for novel experiences can increase consistency and focus in homeschooling.
  • Establishing consistent routines, such as prioritizing adequate sleep and setting reminders, can positively impact a parent’s ability to stay consistent and disciplined in homeschooling.
  • A consistent homeschooling routine diminishes the need for negotiation with children about whether school will happen each day, fostering a smoother, more productive learning environment.

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