Embracing Shortcuts: Navigating Unconventional Paths in Education

Welcome back to Making Everyday Magic! I’m Shanna, and if you’re new here, we’re a homeschooling family of four in our seventh year of this journey. With a sixth and a second grader for the 2023-2024 school year, which is quickly coming to a close, I wanted to chat with you about something that’s been on my mind: shortcuts. Shortcuts can mean success, especially in education!

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Shortcuts Can Mean Success

My Journey

As parents, especially homeschooling parents, it’s natural to worry about whether we’re doing enough to set our children up for success, particularly when it comes to their future education and career paths. But what happens when our children’s aspirations deviate from the paths we envisioned for them?

Let me share a bit of my own journey with you. Growing up in the Houston area, I always had my sights set on attending Rice University and studying political science. However, life had other plans. I started at a community college, but my interests and goals shifted over time. Eventually, I found myself pursuing a career in cosmetologyβ€”a decision that initially took me by surprise but ultimately changed my life for the better.


A Specific Scenario

Recently, I encountered a parent in a homeschooling group facing a dilemma familiar to many: their child expressed a desire to pursue cosmetology instead of following the traditional college route. This situation inspired me to reflect on the importance of supporting our children’s dreams, even if they don’t align with our own expectations.

Shortcuts Can Mean Success

Listen To Your Kid

If your child knows their passion and it doesn’t fit the traditional mold, it’s crucial to listen to them and explore alternative paths together. Whether it’s cosmetology, HVAC, or another skilled trade, these fields offer valuable opportunities for success and fulfillment.


Help Your Kids Reach THEIR Goals

I encouraged the parent to consider researching community college programs, which provide reputable education and flexibility for future endeavors. Talking with the school to find out how to get their learner into the cosmetology program by the fall, even if getting a GED is the fastest route to their dreams. By taking shortcuts tailored to their child’s goals, they could help them enter the workforce sooner and without the burden of excessive student debt.


Benefits of Skilled Work

In today’s society, there’s a pervasive belief that success follows a linear path of higher education. But the reality is far more diverse. Skilled work is still good work, and there’s immense value in empowering our children to pursue their passions, regardless of societal expectations.

Shortcuts Can Mean Success


As homeschooling parents, our role is to equip our children with the tools they need to thrive in the world. This means supporting their individual journeys and letting go of preconceived notions about what constitutes success.

In conclusion, embracing shortcuts can lead to unexpected opportunities and profound fulfillment. By listening to our children, exploring alternative paths, and advocating for their dreams, we empower them to chart their own course and find success on their terms.

Thank you for joining me on this journey. If you found this post helpful or thought-provoking, I’d love to hear from you in the comments or connect with you on Instagram at @makingeverydaymagic. Remember, the key to making everyday magic lies in embracing the unique paths that lead us to our happiest, most fulfilling lives.

Okay, until next time, keep embracing those shortcuts and making everyday magic happen!

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