Note from the editor: This is not meant to imply that homeschooling is right or possible for every family, we are grateful for all school systems; it is simply insight into this world if you are looking for more information or understanding.
So many opinions rise to the surface when this topic is discussed: People who are strongly for it, and those that are adamantly opposed.
Everyone has something to say, and it may, or may not, be friendly. When you begin contemplating if (just maybe) it could be right for your family, it may be challenging to wade through such a sea of information and emotion. And let’s face it, sometimes its hard to imagine doing something that is outside “The way it is always been done.”
With all that being said, let me tell you that I absolutely LOVE homeschooling my kids. I love, love, love it! So, if you began reading this, hoping for a balanced, two-sided, look at homeschooling, you probably don’t want to finish the read. I’m anything but balanced, and in every way passionate, about this topic!
My husband and I began our homeschooling journey 12 years ago when I was pregnant with our fourth child, and our oldest, Jacob, was five. We didn’t begin for noble reasons; our journey into homeschooling was birthed by need. Jacob, when he was 5 1/2, had a liver transplant. Two months later, he was to begin kindergarten, but because of his health issues, we decided to keep him home for a year.
All that being decided, I dove in head first. I was quickly hooked. Over the last 12 years our family has grown to include 8 beautiful children, and I have tried at least as many different curriculums to help me teach our children. I haven’t done it “right” all of the time, but I have grown as a mom, a teacher, and a woman in more ways than I can count. Choosing to homeschool is not for the faint of heart. It is the biggest, unpaid job out there, but the rewards are deep and lasting for those who choose to take the plunge.
Now that I have the vantage point of looking back over the years, I can see so many blessings that came from our decision to homeschool:
- One of the most precious to me, as a mom, is that my kids truly enjoy being together. Playing football with Dad would trump any other activity that could arise. Our family truly enjoys being a family, and that is absolutely priceless to me!
- We eat three meals a day together; healthy food, noisy conversation, and laughter mark every meal. (We do a lot of things well, but quiet isn’t on the list!)
- At the beginning our journey, I didn’t know that two of our sons would suffer from dyslexia. Homeschooling allowed me to tailor their education to meet their needs without them being labeled or feeling like they were ‘different’. Our Jacob, who is now 17 years old, (and perfectly healthy, I might add) didn’t learn to read until he was in 6th grade. He is now a junior in high school, as well as a freshman in college. I never could have dreamed he would soar so high just a few years ago!
- I could go on and on telling you of the benefits and blessings of homeschooling, but I will close with one last thought. Homeschooling has allowed me to be the one who sees their struggles as well as hear their hearts first. I don’t get told second hand information about my kids. I know their triumphs and individual struggles, and it is my absolute honor and privilege to be able to release love, life, and hope into their hearts every moment of every day.
The work, the tears, and the struggles, I have experienced over the years isn’t what I remember when I look back. It’s the joys, the triumphant moments of breakthrough, and the sheer volume of memories that I treasure. May your journey, no matter what you decide, be marked with true joy that comes from simple decisions to love well.