Commence Home School -- Why We Choose Home Education

When my daughter was born, I vaguely thought about her education; it was so far away... right?

When she was three, I was like, "Kindergarten is still two years away... I got time."

Suddenly she's four and some months, and I'm all, "how did this happen?! I have to decide on her schooling. I thought I had so much time!"

Little brother just couldn't be left out!
I think deep down, I always knew I was going to home school, but I really didn't tell many people I was even thinking about it until the last couple of months. Why? Because I have this tendency to fear what others think of me.

There. I said it.

While most people are completely supportive, some people just can not comprehend why anyone would choose such a path. There are many people that assume all home school families are the same... secluded, socially awkward, and sheltered. Or there is assumption that all home school families are anti-public school. (I will address these myths in another post).

Not only do I fear what people think of me, I also fear that people with think I am judging THEM on their schooling choices, as if I think that home school is the best way for every child to be educated. Or that only the best parents home school.

All of this. So. Not. True.

So, why are we home schooling? Because, it's what Mike and I feel is best for our family.

Our circumstances are such that home schooling works for us.

More specifically:

Financially, we are able to sustain ourselves with my husband's job and both of our free lance incomes. That means, I am able to be home with my kids full time. Not everyone has that or even wants that.

It's actually our free lance lifestyle that tipped the scales for us. Since becoming so, Mike and I have relished in the flexibility of our schedules. We have become quite used to being very choosy about how we spend our time, and the thought of having someone else (a public school system) telling us how we should spend or time is totally unappealing.

That's not to say, we don't respect being timely and responsible about meetings and appointments. Our schedule is loose, but we still have things to do and places to be.

Also, I am a learner and a teacher at heart. These are gifts that God has given me and that have been nurtured in me all my life. I'm not diluting myself, I know there will be times of utter frustration while teaching my children, but I feel I have the ability to teach and the patience to endure home schooling.

If our circumstances were any different... if I had to or wanted to work more, or my gifting was, say engineering or cooking or calculating rather than learning and teaching, my kids would be going to public school.

We started school officially on July 11. I know. I know it seems cruel to make kids do school during "summer vacation," but my kids don't know what it means to have summer vacation! Summer lends itself to SO MANY learning opportunities that I don't want to miss out on. So, I am going to take full advantage of them not knowing what they are "missing out" on.

Starting in Summer to do a year round schooling schedule will allow us a four day school week with plenty of vacation opportunity as well. Many smaller breaks with a more relaxed weekly schedule suits me better than a few longer breaks. I'm hoping it will cut review time too, because, really, kids forget a lot of what they learned during the summer break.

This is definitely NOT going to become a home school blog, but I do look forward to sharing some fun projects with you as well as some joys and struggles of this lifestyle.

Did you (or do you) struggle with decisions about your kids' education? Share and support each other in the comments : )


17 comments:

  1. I have to say that this was nice to read! I have a one year old daughter who I am quietly considering the homeschooling option for... I never thought it would ever be an option is look to but since learning more about it I have put it in my head as an option.. I feel the same as you on being judged... I think others have a different idea of homeschooling that has stemmed from the socially awkward and isolated myth.. I'd love to hear how it works for you! Good luck <3

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    1. I feel like home schooling is made much easier and a more viable option for everyone since the age of the internet. I don't I would have ever looked at it as an option pre-internet! I promise a post on my feelings about the social awkward/isolation myth.

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  2. This really made me think. I'm also a freelancer and love my time freedom. Thanks!

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    1. Freelancing is a lifestyle that definitely not everyone "gets." Thanks for reading!

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  3. I seriously mean it when I say good for you guys! Homeschooling actually really appeals to me, but I don't have the gifting to do it. :) Also, I can't believe that Gwenyth is old enough to be in kindergarten!

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    1. RIGHT!? Five... SHE'S FIVE! Thanks for your support (not surprising) : )

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  4. Thank you SO much for this post. It is a huge encouragement to me. I always knew in my heart also that we would homeschool. Both my husband and I were homeschooled. And I have faced these exact fears of what others would think, or that others would feel judged. You voiced a lot of what I have been feeling. Our oldest turns five today (What?!), and starts school this fall. I'm currently researching teaching and education styles (I'm not a born teacher...), but am very excited to see how each of our kids learn. A big part of it for us also was the flexibility. I started my own business a couple of years ago, and through it we are creating a lifestyle that lends itself to homeschool and travel. It's so encouraging to hear of other families on this journey. All the best to you!

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    1. It's so cliche, but 5 comes so fast! I wish you the best as you start. I am so thankful for the internet. I feel like even those who are not born teachers can glean SO much from others so easily now a days!

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  5. If I had the gift of teaching, I would consider home schooling too. I really enjoyed this piece and learning why you chose it. I'm excited to read more about your journey!

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    1. Thank you for reading and your support!

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  6. Home schooling is a wonderful option. We have always made our education decisions for "each child, each year". With four very different kids at different stages of life, we were blessed to have different options at different times. For the past two years, two kids were home schooled and two kids were at public school. It was the right fit for them. I wish there wasn't so much judgment among moms that are trying to do their best. And, I wish there wasn't so much guilt that somehow we don't measure up as good enough moms. Maybe if we gave ourselves some grace we could extend it to others too.

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    1. YES! I find comfort that neither home school nor public school have to be permanent decisions! I totally agree that each child is different and we will also evaluate year by year. I so admire your family!! Thanks for reading and your comments.

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  7. I had a conversation with our family doctor regarding this exact idea last week! A big part of me is considering homeschooling our kids (3.5 and 1.5 years old). Thanks for the information regarding your decision!

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    1. My kids are two years apart too! I am sure some of my sharing will be how to handle the younger child while trying to do lessons with the older : ) It's already been a piece of work!

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  8. After I spent time in West Africa and helped a family home school their children for a few months I've had such a high respect for home schooling, so I was excited when my sister decided to home school her children. It's such a neat option and l love that you can make lessons fit the interest of the child. However, like you said, it's not for everyone. In fact, it turns out that it may not be for my niece. She's actually going to a private school next year because she decided she wanted to be in a classroom. I'm glad that my sister is giving her the option to check it out. :)

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  9. Yes... I think it is so important to listen to the child! It's comforting to know that home school (or public school for that matter) is not a permanent decision.

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  10. Can't wait to read about your adventures! Sometimes I still wish that's the direction we'd go, but as you highlight, we do what works for us. I'd like to call myself an "inbetweeny". The girls will go to public school, but I hope to continue to be brave enough to be choosy about where our girls spend time and not let the public school determine what they should or should not do. There are things to learn in the classroom, but there's so much to learn outside the classroom!

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