Helping Teens Discover Their Star, Interview with Anita Gibson

This week on Homeschool Highschool Podcast: Helping Teens Discover Their Star, Interview with Anita Gibson. This post is running concurrently on the Ultimate Homeschool Podcast Network.

Helping Teens Discover Their Star, Interview with Anita Gibson

Helping Teens Discover Their Star, Interview with Anita Gibson

We love having our dear friend, Anita Gibson, on the podcast. When Vicki first read her book, Starfinder, she knew she found a kindred spirit. SO she loves connecting with her again.

Anita and her husband homeschooled their children all the way to graduation. That was over twenty years of homeschooling! She is now a Titus 2 woman- a woman who invests in the next generation of homeschooling families to give them confidence and success. Anita is now serving with encouragement in her:

Anita believes in holding hands and calming hearts and helping moms know they CAN homeschool high school!

Vicki asked Anita to discuss her wonderful book, Starfinder, with us so that we can help teens discover their stars. The book came out of her experience homeschooling one of her kids. Her daughter was experiencing difficulties learning so Anita wanted to figure out what to do with that.

As she prayed and watched her daughter, she found that even the things that we slow or irritating about her personality and learning style were actually little nuggets of the giftings that God had placed in her.

Anita decided that she needed to become a star finder for her daughter.

In fact, every child has a star! Homeschooling parents’ most wonderful job is becoming star finders!

STAR is actually an acronym for:

  • S: Strengths
  • T: Talents
  • A: Abilities
  • R: Resources

Every child has those four things. As parents discover their own ability to be their child’s advocate and champion, they can help their kids discover their STARS! Anita’s book, therefore, helps parents get themselves into the right position mentally, emotionally and spiritually so they can lead that child into their STAR-ness.

Anita has this advice for parents:

It’s not about perfection… It’s about perspective!

Homeschooling is not about perfection, its about perspective. -Anita Gibson

In order to help teens find their stars, parents need to be aware of themselves, too!

For instance, it is easy for us to feel inadequate as homeschooling parents when we look at how other parents homeschool their teens. When we start comparing ourselves to others we forget that:

All we are and all we are not, is exactly what is needed for our teen in this season. There is nothing else that you need to be in order to homeschool your teens!

So, as you plan your homeschool high school, remember that your homeschool is a blending of who you are as a parent and who your teens are. The blending together makes your homeschool look exactly what it should be. (Thus, if you try to do what others are doing, you are missing the beauty of what God has created your homeschool to be.)

Remember: There’s not ONE right way to homeschool high school!

Therefore, we should not try to have someone else’s “perfect homeschool”. In fact, there is no such thing as a perfect homeschool!

How do we go about helping our teens find their star?

Start with a Scripture. Anita has a guiding Scripture in Philippians 4:4-7

Rejoice in the Lord and again I say rejoice.

Start with a perspective of rejoicing in the Lord. When you are calibrated to looking to God for joy, you will have more strength to see the stars in your life and your teens’ lives.

Philippians 4:6,7

Do not be anxious for anything, but in everything, with prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and your mind through Christ Jesus.

When you find yourself anxious about your ability to homeschool high school, make the request for help known to God. It is okay to be honest with Him. Over time, we will start to see that peace in our hearts. That makes us more available to our teens to find their stars.

As we step into the process of Star Finding, we find that we are stepping into the process of developing who WE are created to be.

Then we discover that we can help our teens through the process of finding their star. You will grow together. God’s grace in and you will grow, also.

Know the thing that irritates you most about your teens is probably part of STAR

Spot what is the nugget inside those behaviors. For instance, a teen who talks ALL the time, may be called to be a speaker. Or a child that takes everything apart, might become an engineer. Therefore, give them opportunities to channel and challenge those “skills”!

For instance, Anita has a daughter that talked ALL the time. Anita recognized that as a star so began to give her opportunities to develop her speaking skills through drama programs, Toastmasters, training in several world languages, and family “talk time”. That daughter is now in the diplomatic corps in the State Department.

Go on LOTS of field trips

The field trips do not always need to be interesting. However, in experiencing lots of field trips, teens often discover interests and even, abilities.

Try on some different lessons, even if they do not stick with it:

  • Piano or other music lessons
  • Art lessons
  • An unusual sport

Look ways to connect or learn about other cultures

You can do this with:

  • Field trips
  • Books
  • Movies
  • Restaurants

Here are some tools to help:

Clifton Strengthsfinder (for teens and for parents)

Check out our other discussions with Anita Gibson:

Join Vicki and Anita for an encouraging discussion on helping teens find their star!


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Vicki Tillman

Blogger, curriculum developer at, counselor, life and career coach, SYMBIS guide, speaker, prayer person. 20+year veteran homeschool mom.

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