It is like once homeschooling entered my mind, God started working. Yes, He did. He has brought all kinds of amazing people and books and resources into my life. I began to seriously ponder whether I could actually undertake this difficult task of homeschooling Abby. After studying and praying, I knew without a doubt, I have to do it! God has called me to do it.
Here are just a few of the reasons why I(we) have chosen to home school:
Life is short!
I don't know the length of my life, or Mike's life, or Abby's life. Will we be around one month from now? Fifty years from now? Life is short, times moves quickly! Already, eight years of Abby's life has passed. I can not rewind time and I can not get it back, but I want to make the most of what time we do have together.
A portion of my mission statement says, "I will be a whole-hearted follower of Christ and glorify Him by shepherding to the hearts of my children." It also says, "I will be a whole-hearted follower of Christ by stewarding wisely the time and resources God has entrusted to me."
Homeschooling invites me into a relationship with my daughter.
I was torn on whether to put this in here, because I’m afraid it might be misunderstood. Please don’t read this the wrong way. I love and care for my all three of my kids…it’s not like I have to be forced into loving them. There are just moments when relationships are hard. And when parenting is hard. For instance, I butt heads constantly with one of my kids. Some days I wonder if I will be able to do this. It’s at these moments I realize how valuable homeschooling is for mine and Abby’s relationship. If Abby continues to be away from me for 8+ hours a day, I’d miss the character and heart issues that need dealt with (in her AND myself). Being with her 24-7 means we have to find solutions and grow together! We’re *forced* into building a strong relationship with each other and with God. I am not saying we will be perfect or that we will not have bad days. I expect that. But, we have to learn together to overcome these obstacles. Dr. William Sears says, “According to this idea, the more time parents and kids spend apart, the less parents know and understand their kids; the less responsive, respectful, and communicative both parents and kids become; and the more time both need away from each other.” I don’t want that to happen to my relationship with Abby. All too often, I’ve seen the change in children as they go away to preschool, elementary school, and middle school. By the time they are teenagers, they want nothing to do with their parents. We are experiencing this first hand as I write this. I don’t want this for Abby and I. Yes, I want her to have friends and spread her wings but as well as being her mother; I want to be her best friend. I want her to come to me with anything and everything. I know this may not happen, but it will not be because I didn’t put forth every effort.
Schools are not a good fit for "most" kids.
I personally loved the "school" part of school. I was good at it. It fit my learning style. But I would say that I am the exception rather than the rule. Many schools I have seen, attempt to make cookie-cutter people. They desire uniformity. They stomp out creativity. They have an agenda. They have a certain test score to meet. They leave children with wounds. I have seen kindergartners go to school excited and exuberant. Nine months later, the leave hating school and learning.
- Early exposure to alcohol & drugs
- Sexual experimentation
- Disrespect for adults
When you are one on one with a child, you can accomplish "school work" in a shorter amount of time. We will not have to wait for the other kids to finish their work. Or if we need to take longer on an assignment because she "just doesn't get it," then we can do that also. We will not have to spend time moving from one location to the next. We will not have to go at the same speed for everyone. We will not have to deal with tons of discipline problems (only Abby's). Our on-task time is probably more in just a few hours than what children in schools accomplish for the whole day!
One thing to stop and consider is the "socialization" that children are getting in the public school setting. Most children in the public school setting get straight out of bed, get ready for school and arrive at school between 7:30-7:45 a.m. still groggy and grouchy, and get home sometime between 3:30 and 5:00 pm. Some adults are not even gone from home this long each day. They spend all day with other kids who are basically the same age, same socioeconomic status, and sometimes even divided into the same gender. They have to spend their day around people they may or may not like and may or may not have any common interests with, all without any consideration for their personal choice. Their day is full of "hurry up" and "wait," having to sit in assigned seats and being quiet even when they have something to say. They have to learn what, when, and how they are told, even if it is something the family does not agree with. They can not even go to the bathroom at their own leisure. They are in an atmosphere where it is either be part of the crowd, be left out, or even worse, be singled out of the crowd. When the children finally get home from school, most of then have an after school activity and are completely worn out, do their homework, shower, eat and go to bed. They are running so fast and furious that they don't have time to relax. Where is their social time? Let alone time to spend with family.
Please do not take our personal reasons as judgment on what your family chooses to do. Again, lots have asked and I just wanted to share why WE are choosing to home school.
Truthfully, I know there will be hard days. There will be days I want to give up. There will be days I think I am just about to go crazy. There will be days that I blow it! However, I really feel the blessings will far outweigh the hardships.
I can not imagine my life without my family with me most of the day now. And, like I said, ten years ago I would have thought you were crazy if you had told me I was going to be homeschooling my child. I would have thought you were crazy if you had told me I would be a stay at home mom/teacher.
But, guess what?
I am happier now than I have ever been. I love my life and I want to share that love and excitement with Abby as she grows and learns! God has given me an opportunity and I am going to take it!
Love to you all!
Stay tuned! You can follow along as we begin this WONDERFUL ADVENTURE!!!