Here is the final installment of our Enneagram + Homeschool series. I am so grateful for these nine homeschool mamas who have shared their hearts and their stories with us. How encouraging to read nine unique perspectives on the homeschooling life!
The power of the Enneagram is in its ability to harness and transform self-limiting behaviors into life-enhancing personal empowerment. The gift of the Enneagram is that through self-discovery, one can create and sustain meaningful and lasting relationships with others, God and themselves.Beth McCord, Your Enneagram Coach
The Enneagram is a useful tool on our journey as homeschool moms–bringing deeper insight into our school style and teaching dynamics–and we are thankful for any means that helps us be better home educators and mothers.
Today our series concludes with types 1, 2, and 3!
TYPE 1: The Moral Perfectionist
(explore more here)
type 1 wing 2
Purposeful. Perfectionist. Principled. I am definitely a type 1 wing 2 to the core, and these aspects of my personality influence how I homeschool my little ones. Our oldest is only in pre-K, so I am by no means a seasoned homeschooler. However, I very purposefully pursue our homeschool journey. I intentionally and thoroughly researched curricula, delved deep into educational philosophies, and formed a vision for how I see our homeschool time over the course of twenty-plus years. I can’t just think of tomorrow, or next month, or even next year. I am always long-term planning, even though I know that plan may end up changing. Also, I am a person who lives by convictions, so once I discovered an educational philosophy that resonated with me, I was 100% committed to implementing this in our homeschool through choice of curricula and teaching methodology (while also convincing my husband to be all-in as well!).
I am incredibly detail-oriented and a “live by the rules” homeschool mom, so it’s crucial for me to use a curriculum that is laid out day-by-day and open-and-go. With that, I struggle to be flexible and battle anxiety when we are unable to accomplish all of the assignments for the day. Which is something I have to daily work through as a mama to three children under age four (with more planned in our future!). I also find myself easily frustrated when my children aren’t understanding a concept I think they should be able to grasp, so I’m learning to let that go, which can be a daily struggle for sure.
Although we are only in the beginning chapters of writing our homeschool story, I already am so excited for the chapters that lie ahead. However, I know I need to remain open and vulnerable, willing to learn from others who are a step or two ahead of us. I know that, while it is easy for me to want to forgo advice and do things my own way, I can glean value from the wisdom and experience of others. I absolutely love homeschooling our children. The aspects of my personality that make me an Enneagram type 1 also make me a teacher who is dedicated and inspired to homeschool our children.
Megan is a homeschooling mama of three little ones (hopefully more to come via adoption!) and they just recently started their homeschool journey. You can find her on Instagram @homeschoolinghirschys or on their YouTube channel Homeschooling Hirschys.
TYPE 2: The Supportive Advisor
(explore more here)
type 2 wing 1
As an Enneagram 2, I joke that I am pre-programmed to homeschool. All joking aside, I find deep satisfaction and joy in helping others. Homeschooling as a type 2 comes as a double-edged sword. When I am in a healthy place, I find it a pleasure to help my children on their journey of education and development. When I’m not in that healthy place, I attach too much of my identity and self-worth to assisting them and deny that I have my own needs and areas of growth. (The sneaky vice of pride!) While that can easily be the struggle of any mom, the particular practice I need is to steep in my identity as Beloved before coming to the homeschool table (or floor!).
I began to identify myself as a homeschool mom before my firstborn could walk and was drawn to the Montessori Method. It was pretty simple, until there were two, and then three children I was trying to observe, follow and develop along the way. Keeping up with the demands of three littles, when as a type 2 I already want to fulfill needs constantly, led to a cycle of burnout. Burnout comes after moments and days of denying that I “need” anything at all, let alone assistance. It can look like sudden exhaustion, internal paralyzation or even outbursts at those that I love most, as I can feel under-appreciated for all of the work I do.
Centering prayer is my biggest tool in navigating the waters of homeschool, practicing release of my concerns and the concerns of others, and resting in the peace of knowing that, above all, I am loved. It continues to be a journey to put this centering practice before curriculum research and material preparation. With insight from the Enneagram, I am reminded I do not have to stay where I am. No number is static. It is my starting place on a journey to live out the truth that my true self is already made whole in Christ. Because of Christ, I can keep moving in a healthy direction, toward reclaiming my place in the world as I nurture my children to discover their own.
Justine lives with her husband, Ryan, on mission in Malawi, Africa. She is mom to three girls and has homeschooled the whole way. You can find her online at www.justinemariehayes.com and also on Instagram @justinemariehayes.
TYPE 3: The Successful Achiever
(explore more here)
type 3 wing 2
I identify as a type 3, wing 2 on the Enneagram. I recently dove into the ins-and-outs of the meaning behind these “identities,” reminding myself I am not tied to what these numbers mean, but rather, I can use this knowledge to better myself in Christ and to love others more fully. When I think of how I identify on the Enneagram and how that corresponds with my homeschooling, I think of these areas I am thriving and growing in: how my achievement mindset can get all the things done, how I can miss out on the meanings and deep connections because I am so focused on the accomplishment of the tasks, and how I am reminded over and over that my worth is not in who I am in-and-of myself, but who I am in Jesus.
Identifying as a type 3 has given me success and moments of refinement in homeschooling over the years. My success comes as I am focused, my kids are on a schedule, and I can achieve all the things and still have time for relaxing at the end of the day. My checklists are always checked off and, in most cases, I don’t get overwhelmed by the balance of life that homeschooling and being a mom (and running a small business and keeping up with all the relationships) demands. Yet, my refinement comes close behind as I have found I MUST take time to remind myself my children and homeschooling are not simply a box to be checked off at the end of the day. My 3-ness is brought to a halt when I have to take time to re-explain (that wasn’t on the schedule!), wipe away a tear, talk about hurt feelings, or throw out an entire lesson for the day. I am reminded my achievements, or lack thereof, all amount to nothing if I am not putting relationships with my children before my checklist.
Also, over the last few months in homeschooling, I realized that yes, I can do and take on a lot of responsibilities, but my identity is not tied to all I accomplish–it is first found in Jesus. Then, from there, it is about the Holy Spirit empowering my gifts and talents for His glory through homeschooling, helping others, and, most importantly, bringing the hearts of my children to Jesus. Oh, may the Holy Spirit ever be working and may my heart always be tuned to how I can love others more fully.
Kara, homeschooler of four young kids ages 10 down to 4, resides in the greater Indianapolis area drinking lots of coffee, running a small business, and enjoying life to its fullest with her husband of thirteen years. You can find Kara regularly on Instagram @8kmong or blogging at thesimplemotherhood.com.
We hope you are encouraged! And also inspired to perhaps learn more about your own unique personality and how working within your strengths may enhance your school experience. We pray it’s come through loud and clear that, no matter your personality type, you can be a wonderful homeschool mom! God has given you “everything you need” (2 Peter 1:3) for your children to thrive at home.
Note: I borrowed each type name & highlighted “explore more” links from Your Enneagram Coach, one of my favorite voices to learn from in Enneagram world. You can also find the coach, Beth McCord, on Instagram.