Blogger Friend School Assignment – Feel free to join the fun!
Oh What a Feeling
Assignment: Take time this week to write about YOU and your feelings of trials and triumphs with homeschooling. Touch on when you first heard about the concept of home schooling and whether you tip-toed into the idea or just jumped in and never looked back. Share your schooling as a child and how you compare it to what your goals are for your children.
Living in Australia we aren’t starting afresh at the moment – kind of the contrary – we are heading into our last quarter shortly. I like this time of the year though as we have just come through a very busy season, and as the weather heats up we tend to stay indoors and hit the books unless we are looking for a swimming pool for a swim. Routine is a little more routine!
What do I feel about homeschooling? Homeschooling has become a way of life for us – not just the routine of doing lessons, but a lifestyle of living together, sharing experiences and talking about things all the time. It would be very strange indeed not to have my children around me day in and day out.
My first contact with homeschooling was when my Dad traveled to the States in 1978 for a Ministry Study tour. He apparently went to a homeschool seminar and came home feeling that we should be homeschooled. We lived in an isolated area, there was no such thing as homeschool support groups or internet; actually homeschooling itself was a much unknown concept in Australia. In the end my parents sent me to a church school for just over one year, where I lived in a church run boarding house. Many years later my younger brother was homeschooled for one year in Yr.10.
When Peter and I got married we talked about homeschooling our children-to-be and probably expected that to happen. By the time I had a toddler running around I knew that the programmes that we had earmarked where not to be for my children, they didn’t suit my parenting style at all. So we tossed around and decided upon public school. While our eldest, Josh was in preschool I came across some other homeschool curriculum – this was more like it! Seeing a wider array of options available as far as curriculum goes opened up the discussion again. Then we were challenged with the idea of being the biggest influence in our children’s lives. If this were to be the case, we needed to spend the most time with them. Homeschooling was back on the agenda!
I just love our lifestyle. Sure, there are challenges. I look and see what mums who send their kids to school can achieve in their days and I must admit at times there is a twinge of wishfulness, but reality is, that I wouldn’t have it any other way. Those things that seem desirable for that flash of time, don’t count against the benefits of having our children live beside me.
One of my favourite scriptures is in Deut 6 and you all know it – v6 – And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligenty to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
Though the talking when we sit, walk and lie down are truly the methodology we use to train our children the real challenge of this scripture for me is the first part – these words … shall be in my heart. I must have the Word of God in my heart before I can talk about them to the children.
Peter and I are very aware and thankful for the spiritual heritage we have built our family on. Both set of our parents are Christians whose desire was to bring their children up to love and serve the Lord. I don’t necessarily wish we were homeschooled as kids – the experiences that I had as a child and as a young adult are the things that have shaped me to be the person that I am today. The same as homeschooling will shape and mould our children into the adults they will be one day.
I completed my education at a Church school, who didn’t graduate their students with a State recognized exam based score. I remember my parents saying that they had the faith to send us to such a school, but they prayed that by the time we (the kids) had to walk in the repercussions of their decision (further education and careers) that we too would have the faith to continue to trust God for opportunities. This is the same prayer I have for my children. I have the faith that what we are doing is right, but I also pray that as my children grow older they too will have the faith to walk as an adult in the repercussions of our decision to homeschool them. The faith journey never really ends.
a recent photo of me, taken while we were camping