Monday, August 26, 2013

I wrote a blog over a year ago on some things I had been considering about homeschooling. You can read it here. As we start a new year, I have had some more thoughts about why we do what we do.

More reasons we choose to home school. ( I understand not everyone has the freedom to stay home and home school. I also understand not everyone is a Christ follower). I realize I write this blog from a passionate advocate of homeschooling. If you read it and are offended, I urge you to engage in conversation with me about it. My intent is not to offend but maybe to make you think about your choices for your family and if they are truly right for you. As I said before, we said NEVER would this be us.

1. To be a good steward of the time I have with my kids!

Deut  6 says :“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently 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. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

I personally, can not follow this call by being away from my babies for 7 hours a day during my best hours.I could say well from 3-7 I can teach them diligently... and  on the weekend, but really- life is busy. They get home and there is dinner and homework. Weekends are filled with birthday parties and events. I believe this is a call for all of us, home schoolers or not. If you are a Christian parent you are called to this- to teach them diligently.

 They are growing so quickly. I often think of all the preparation it takes to have your kids in school. Pack lunches, lay out clothes, get up and get them ready, drive them there, wait in carpool line, wait in carpool line again, do their homework with them, sign forms etc etc.

 Yes, home school takes some prep too but I am prepping for my kids specific needs and their day as far as lesson planning. We typically get done with formal school in two hours, sometimes three. This includes worship, soaking, bible study and the basics reading, writing, arithmetic. Then we have the rest of the day to hang out, go to gymnastics practice, and play games as a family.

2. Freedom of time

I can take my kids on vacation whenever works best for us or this year- when Disney is least crowded! We can pick up and go to the zoo, field trips, or run a day of errands without having to worry about picking  a child up here or dropping off there.

3. I don't get sad as they grow

This time of year I am bombarded with moms crying as they drop their kids off to school. Or things like " Just cried all the way home, I can't believe they are in this grade and this grade." I have to ask a hard question. Has society made it so normal for us to drop our kids off for hours at a time that we can ignore a motherly instinct of sadness and think it is normal?  Maybe God has given us a desire to be with our children and this sadness we feel is actually from him- not normal and something to be celebrated.

I don't usually get sad when they grow or enter a new grade, Why? because I get to experience everything with them day in and day out. I don't have that nagging feeling in the back of my mind that I am going to regret these years.

4. The "worst" home school day is better than any public school day for my kids. For two reasons.

1) What they get from me. They get love, acceptance, protection. They get to bond with their brothers and sisters. They get to experience life at their pace and their learning style. They get to interact with all kinds of people and ages. They get JESUS all day long. They get heart training all day long. They get me at my best. My best hours are in the morning.( BY 2-4 I am DONE as in I am tired and crave time to myself or I am just lower energy, and not intentional). Even if we don't do anything "academic" they are still learning and growing in my opinion, the best environment for them.

2) What they don't get at school: Even if we get nothing done at home, they are still being protected from the indoctrination of the school system. On two levels 1) What they are "learning" from the government chosen curriculum and 2) what they are getting from other kids as far as "socialization." I have heard people are so scared to let the kids ride on the bus so they take them to school, yet, the same kids and kind of activities that are on the bus are at the schools, don't you think? So, by keeping them at home it is a win-win on so many levels.Kids at this age are little sponges, They absorb everything, They are so impressionable. I want to teach them my values. It is also my responsibility as a parent to maintain ad protect their innocence. You get one childhood. I will gladly make the sacrifice to let them keep it a little while longer.

5.) About being a 5 year old evangelist

I used to be an advocate for the public school system because I thought- what would happen if all the evangelicals took their family out of school? Part of my thinking was that we shouldn't dis-engage from the community. There are plenty of ways to be an active part of the community without your children going to school. I now ask, at what cost? No 5 year old or 8 year old is ready to go and be a witness or to follow through on Gods calling for their life. They may make new friends and we may be an active part in the school community but at what cost to our children? Be involved in the community, let your child share his faith, but let them do it under the umbrella of safety and protection. Based on statistics, the little evangelists will be turning away from the church quicker than you can say 7th grade.

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