Thursday, September 1, 2011

Why I homeschool...still

It takes quite a bit for something to get under my skin and something has recently...people questioning my decision to home school my kids this year. Now the first thing I want to say is I really don't look for approval from everyone to do what I do. My concern is being in God's will and His will only. I'm good with that, I just wish everyone else- friends, family members (mainly one), people who barely know me, would leave me be after my basic brief explanation.

For most people the thought of home schooling scares them. I hear, "You are so brave", "I could never do that", "I can't wait to put my kids in school/summer to be over." Well, it's like most things in life- a leap of faith. One that I took 7 years ago after Leah finished 4th grade and public school wasn't the best fit for her abilities. Since then our reasons have matured  & changed along with our children, and when faced with the decision to home school after becoming a single parent, my reasons have shifted too. But I still know without a shadow of a doubt that this is what I'm supposed to be doing. Maybe that's why some of the well-meaning (and not so well-meaning) comments have gotten to me. I feel as though these few people are arguing with God and they just don't get it.

The biggest issue that I think many non-home schoolers don't realize is that it is a LIFESTYLE not just a school choice. Everything we do revolves around learning- sometimes the kids don't even realize it. Little Jon told a friend that stopped by last week that we don't home school anymore, "We just do lapbooks on cool stuff like knights & castles and our next one is on penguins" I taught my daughter to count by 5's and 10's the other night on a mile and a half walk. Learning is fun and I sincerely believe many public school children loose their initial love of learning after the first couple years. I want my kids to embrace their schooling, love to learn, think of what's around them and have the curiosity to know more.

My biggest critic that has killed me with kindness on this topic wonderfully pointed out that now that it's just me I should put the kids in school so I would be able to work all those hours. Said with a perfect smile as if that was the ultimate solution to all my problems. "Look, someone else deals with your kids & you make money." Even after I pointed out my serious issues with sending my kids to a public school this year she followed up with , "But they can do better" WHAT?

I guess I just needed to vent...I'm all for families with traditional school, I've been a part of it myself as well as one of my children for several years. And all this isn't to say that next year will be different for us. But if this is what I've decided for mine, why argue or make me feel bad?

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