Below are personal thoughts concerning potential pitfalls while home-educating our children. They’re an afterthought or, possibly, what I wish could have been gently presented to a parent saying silly things like “My child doesn’t test well”, or “Johnny’s so much smarter than our public school neighbors”. All the points have a story behind them that would make this post much too long. Usually there’s a proud parent and a child that suffers the consequences; sometimes my own guilt rears its repulsive head. In the end, we too must learn and grow -- just like how we're trying to teach our children. Your children are not little gods – they need to study; God has all knowledge – we don’t. It is an act of humility to believe this; be humble, you and your child. When your child has an insightful learning moment, give appropriate praise for the effort and hard work. Make it a moment of encouragement to learn more. Don’t make it an egotistical experience (see #1). If your goal is to educate your child, no amount of fun can take the place of actual learning. The point is this: Both mental and physical skills must be pushed to a point beyond the student’s comfort in order to attain growth. Fun is an embellishment that has its time and place. Among other things, children need praise, encouragement, motivation, discipline, and chastisement – each at its prescribed time and never more than the situation calls for. Too much praise for a menial task can be as bad as an undeserved spanking. As parents we must be forward-looking to see what is necessary to survive five, ten, and twenty years from now. On top of that, a child should learn a valuable skill early in life e.g., brick-laying, programming, ham radio, dry walling, watch repair, gun smithing, electronics, sewing, baking, metallurgy, etc. Train your children accordingly. There is wisdom in doing educational planning. Is your child’s unstructured education really an excuse for your lack of preparation or laziness? “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?” – your child is worth the time and effort of creating a well thought out educational plan. If your child doesn’t “test well”, you better start making him practice early in life; otherwise, he will struggle until he does. Don’t compare your home-taught child to public school students; otherwise, you might start thinking your child is a little god (see #1). Set reasonable standards and goals. Use a testing service to help you understand what you need to work on and what you have done well - "...Don't lean on your own understanding." If you don’t think learning and education are exciting, then your children won’t either. Change your attitude. A child’s self-discipline is best learned early and taught by someone who loves them. “Train a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” The alternative is not good.