It's easy to fall trap to one of two schools of thought. The first is tunnel vision chasing the end goal and forgetting the journey to get there. We become so consumed with the end we forget to take time to enjoy the process.
In relation to homeschooling if you fall within this group don't get so caught up in your curriculum that you ignore the tangents that may interest the kids. Some of these may lead to a very enriching lesson even if it isn't what was planned exactly. This is one of the joys of homeschooling. We can pull off on the "scenic overlooks". Take time to explore, give yourself permission to have impromptu field trips, projects, and tangents and I promise you, you'll be surprised at what you may learn.
The second, is getting so distracted by the journey we forget where we were headed at all. Sometimes this isn't a bad thing, and the journey causes us to alter course. We choose a different path to get where we're headed. We detour where our whims take us. However, we should reign things in a bit now and then and make sure we're meeting our goals. Otherwise, instead a detour you may end up lost.
I tend to hover in the middle depending on the day. So my new way of dealing with this is to have a couple of core task each day. They live on my fridge in sheet protectors so they can be checked off. M is old enough to keep track of his own and R still has 1 activity a day as we head into K2.
So you may wonder what those list contain. M's list has daily knitting (we also listen to audiobooks during this time), read 20 minutes, write something, practice instrument, 1 weekly challenge, science, and math. These are the goals. You may notice that none of these topics are defined with a specific item. This is where we enter the enter the enjoy the journey section. I don't define what science, reading, etc we will do with the exception of math. That is left up to him. This allows us structure with flexibility. He feels in control as do I.
For our weekly challenges we have the artist of the week, state of the week, recipe of the week, STEM challenge of the week, baked good of the week. Lots of room built in for flexibility to explore our tangents.
If I see he's interested in a particular subject, we build around that topic for our week activities. For instance last week was oceans. We watched Bill Nye's program on oceans. Built a boat for STEM, read ocean themed books, and made art of the ocean. This week we'll see where we land. Land ho!
R's list includes 1 item per day of baking item for the week, craft for the week, story of the week, letter of the week, sign language for the week. In addition she has daily instrument practice. When September comes and knitting classes resume, she will also have daily knitting. There are some points of overlap with M and she also benefits from M's lessons as she's generally floating about in the same room.
How do you balance your pursuit of your goals with the journey?