(Disclaimer: These are OUR family's views & reasons why we chose to homeschool. Please respect them.)I promised more insight about our homeschooling choice, so here it is...
Here we were 2 weeks before the start of school here in our small town. My husband and I had been casually discussing the topic of homeschooling our soon-to-be 2nd grader for several months. As the summer came closer to an end, we felt we should really make a decision. We definitely wanted to be sure, completely sure, that the choice we were about to make was the right one. I prayed, my husband prayed, some peace came. While reading countless getting starting articles & researching possible curriculum I came across a Bible verse on a website. It was " 'But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.'" Matthew 7:14. It spoke to my heart and made me think. I pondered on it. I remembered the words of the verse but not the "address". A couple days later, I had opened my Bible, just to read and there it was! Matthew 7:14, loud and clear! That was it, peace came and God had called us to homeschool. My heart and my mind had been decided long before that moment, but I didn't have a peace about it yet. When I read this verse again, peace came, the peace that only God can give.
As I look back a couple months, I realize just how amazing the peace He gave was. I mean really?!? I was about to.....(in a few short weeks)
- Withdraw Jellybean from a decent public school with good teachers
- Research and decide on a curriculum
- Create a place in our home to "have school"(i.e. simply clean and clear out clutter :P)
- Then, what is she going to do while I'm busy with MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers)?
- Are my reasons legit?
- How am I going to keep Gummy Bear (our 2 y.o.) busy?
Why? I have had that question asked multiple times. I will do my best to put it into words. There are so many reasons we moved in this direction. The primary reason, by far, is our spiritual journey as a family. My husband and I want the Bible to be the foundation of our children's educations and most importantly their livelihoods. Public school simply cannot offer that. A solution to this, for many families, is enrolling their children in a Christian private school. The cost for that was simply not affordable for our family. Furthermore, when public school is in session, we found that time with our child(ren) is limited. You know, in between breakfast, rushing out the door in the morning, an hour of homework (or more as grade level increases), basic daily life (dinner, dishes, bedtime routine, family time,etc.) any extracurricular activities and other necessary commitments. Many parents are able to successfully teach God's word with their children in public school. However, it just wasn't enough for us. We needed more.....more time, more interaction and more teachable moments with our girls. Another factor that influenced our decision was our disappointment with the public school system, however I am not going to go into specifics concerning this. Bottom line is the pros of homeschooling far outweighed the pros of public school.
Rules? I have to say the first day of public school was by far one of my hardest days. All I saw on facebook was 1st day pics EVERYWHERE, at least it seemed like everywhere. Then it hit me, our life will be different now. We won't have school picture day, spirit week, awards assemblies and field day. It was a bittersweet moment I will never forget. Public school, for my husband and I, is all we've ever known and those things were memories from our childhoods. It was funny to me because for the first 2 weeks after school was back in, it felt like I was breaking some unwritten rule. You remember that 'I am not in school and for some reason I feel really guilty' feeling we had when we were kids? Especially when we got to miss school for a vacation or something other than illness. Now, we were actually doing school work, staying busy and getting into the swing of things. Yet, it still felt very strange, kind of like we were taking something away from Jellybean, keeping her from making some of the same memories we had made growing up. But you know what, we will make new memories! Yes, they will be different from mine and my husband's, but they will be memories, good memories. Hopefully, they will be memories built on God's word. What could be better than that??
|Jellybean working in her Math workbook|