Table of Contents
A Rough Beginning
When I started writing and teaching children's programs 25 years ago, the thought of having my own website with a lesson planning and curriculum line was not even a remote possibility. The only thought in my head back then was that I was planning the lesson for the next week's studies.
But in those early days of searching the computer for the perfect lessons for my students, what I found was that unless I made up my own lesson plans and curriculum from scratch, the ideas in my head would not become a reality.
I didn't love the existing programs. And the people in charge of the places I was teaching at did not mind that I wanted to come up with my own plans. As time went on and they saw my program in action, they loved to see what I had done.
I spent hours online trying to find a book or program that was teaching exactly what I wanted to focus on with my students. But I usually gave up and ended up making my own plans. And this happened after I had already wasted hours trying to find an already-invented version.
Change of Direction
Once I realized that I wasn't going to find a ready-made curriculum, I then spent countless hours online looking for inspiration. This was before the days of Pinterest. But even after Pinterest was established, I still never found EXACTLY what I wanted to do.
But what I could do with all of that time spent researching was invent my own program elements based on things that I saw and liked that didn't fit exactly with my theme/subjects. I just needed to take the concepts and change them to match my theme.
I followed that routine for years. I wrote my own lessons for whatever program I was doing at the time. They generally consisted of Bible studies and middle school literature programs. Most of the time, I didn't even save what I had done. It just didn't dawn on me that I could use it time and again once I had "invented" it.
A New Thought is Born
And then one day I realized that I had been writing valuable content that was good to use year over year. I stopped throwing it away. And I started looking at my lesson plans and curriculum as an established curriculum. By this time, the kids were loving the ramped up program.
Each year that I taught these programs, I added more exciting and educational elements to them. The kids loved that they weren't stuck in their chairs listening to endless lectures. They were actively learning. They were having fun doing some of their favorite activities! And they barely realized that they were learning at the same time!
The parents and other teachers expressed genuine approval of the different components of the programs as well. The parents especially loved that their children were coming home at night excited about what they had done/learned. For my extra-curricular programs (mostly in churches), the kids were having so much fun that they invited friends and neighbors to come as well.
And the parents and teachers started telling me that I had such a good program that I should be selling it.
Not the Right Time
But at the time, besides working on these programs and teaching them, I was raising my own mini class of kids and homeschooling them. Plus trying to keep up with all of the additional activities of my own kids--sports, music lessons, dance, and whatever else was keeping them busy at the time.
And did I mention that I was a military wife as well? I kept up with all of life (or at least tried my best) with a husband that was gone up to a year at a time. And sometimes he would only be home a couple of weeks or months at a time before he was back out again.
So as much as I would have loved packaging up my curriculum in a way that would allow me to sell it, I was already short by about 10 hours a day. So my dream needed to sit on the backburner during that stage in my life.
A Dream Come True
Since the moments that the dream started out as a little seed, life has changed pretty dramatically. Five of my children are now adults and either attending or graduated from college. Three of those five now have their own homes with their own families. Two more are teenagers finishing up high school. And that leaves one adorable and very precocious eight-year-old that thinks he is as old as his siblings. (In case you got lost there, yes, that is eight children!)
A Life-Changing Decision
And then recently, life got turned upside down a bit--actually quite drastically.
All of a sudden, my dream started to feel more like something that needed to happen sooner than later.
I found myself needing to get a job outside of my home and ministry. But I had spent most of my adult life at home raising my kids, working part time as a substitute teacher in various types of schools, and ministering as a women's and children's teacher at my church. That didn't leave a very impressive resume to instantly start earning a full-time salary.
So then I started thinking about all the times over the years that people told me I should be selling the work that I had been doing all these years. Suddenly, my dream started to take shape as a reality.
I started looking into how to make a website. Then I started learning how to build a business on a website. I did not have the ability to pay someone to do all the technical stuff for me. So I resorted to articles, tutorials, and Youtube.
It took sooo much extra time. It took weeks sometimes just to research one addition to my website to make it work the way it needed to. And it has been a long journey. But to see where it has come today is so exciting for me. And it has been immensely rewarding to see what I could do without getting technical support.
Living the Dream
Although my dream is finally coming to life because of hitting a hard point in my life, it is still coming to fruition!
I know more than I ever thought I would about my computer and how websites work. And although there still aren't enough hours in a day, I have discovered and used a lot of different resources that helped me to make a better website and help navigate the internet world a little bit better.
But one company has helped me to establish my website in a way that has brought me to a place that I now realize that I can have the job of my dreams while also sharing the lesson plans and curriculum that I worked on for most of my adult life and ministry.
That company is Income School. It is founded by two guys, Jim Harmer and Ricky Kesler. They are a couple of down-to-earth, sometimes goofy, but always upbeat guys who have families of their own and have made a great life for them.
They had a dream and now share that dream with thousands of other people to build profitable websites that would support their families and help others to see their dreams realized as well.
Jim was a lawyer and Ricky was an engineer. Both of them knew there was more to life than the daily grind, even in their advanced fields.
And that is how the Income School dream started. They now have a program called Project 24 that shows you how to make a full time income with your website in 24 months by following their step-by-step program.
They can prove that their methods are effective in almost any niche because they have done it and continue to build websites to show us how to do it over and over again.
And they do it in the most white-hat way possible. Which means that you don't have to worry about a successful website falling apart after you have worked so hard on it.
Do You Also Have a Dream?
So if you ever have a dream to build a website of any kind, before you try to figure it out on your own (unless you have a computer science degree!), start with the Income School guys and Project 24. And even if you do have a computer science degree, you may still want to look into their program.
If I had done that to start with (I didn't even find them until I was already a year into the process), I would have already been at a full time salary.
Here is a video that tells you their story and how Income School came to be:
Here is a video that talks a little bit about what they can do for you!
They have tons of helpful videos on youtube on their Income School channel, but if you would like the whole program lined out step by step, you would need to buy their Project 24 program.
So this is the story of 25 years of my life reduced to one article. And I have lived to see my dream of selling my lesson plans and curriculum become a reality. It has been a good story. And it nearly has a fairy tale ending!
For a sample of some of the work I have done, check out this page.
To learn more about the Income School program, click here on Project 24.