"Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend" (Proverbs 27:17).

When it comes to homeschooling, we all have questions, don't we? Although this question may be short on words, it addresses huge issues that can make or break the year for any homeschooling family.

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Q: Organization and motivation! Help, I have neither of these skills. How can I do this?
- Terry F., Texas

A: Although your question has more than one interpretation, I assume you're asking how to personally stay organized and motivated when teaching rather than motivating your children. With that in mind, I'll try to tackle this complex question!

Like love and obedience, I believe that organization and motivation go hand in hand with organization being the natural outflux of a parent who is properly motivated. Granted, even the best homeschooling parent loses track of the goal from time to time, but having a God-given calling to teach your children is the mainstay that keeps one focused when laundry, lesson planning, and other everyday tasks seem too much.

(Homeschooling Hint: With built-in lesson planning calendars, automatic grading, and an interactive, self-directed learning format, a computer-based homeschool curriculum like Switched-On Schoolhouse® from Alpha Omega Publications® makes organizing your homeschooling day much easier).

What factors motivate a parent to homeschool?
According to a 2007 study conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the top three reasons parents are motivated to homeschool are the following:

    • A desire to provide religious or moral instruction: 35.8%

    • A concern about the environment of other schools (safety, drugs, negative peer pressure): 20.5%

    • A dissatisfaction with academic instruction at other schools: 17.1%
Personally, my motivation came when a homeschooling preference turned into conviction after reading God's Word in Deuteronomy 6:6-7: "And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up."

I knew God wanted something better for my children both academically and spiritually. Thus, my homeschool journey began in earnest. Getting organized was easier than staying organized, but a disciplined schedule (motivated out of a love for my children and a higher purpose than my own selfish wants and desires) kept me going. Surprisingly, my own faith from prayer and personal Bible study also increased when I turned to the One who had the wisdom to make it all happen.

What about the rest of our Homeschool View readers? As the new school year approaches, what motivates you to get organized and homeschool your children? Please, share your comments below.