I think the reason Kendra’s post meant so much to me was wrapped up in #5, and the rest were about understanding and surviving in that universe.
5. For many of us, homeschooling isn’t an option. Many believe it is not only the best way for their family, it is the only way… When sharing a particular struggle unique to homeschooling, comments like, “Well, why don’t you consider putting them in school? Maybe homeschooling just isn’t your thing” aren’t helpful. Instead, offer a listening ear and your fervent prayers on her behalf.
Jay and I have talked about this many times, and I constantly pray (and begin research projects) to be prepared. I feel so passionately about this it’s hard sometimes to remain neutral when a friend or relative begins proselytizing about their own child’s school situation (or offering to help us out by sharing something from that lovely program.)
This might rankle some because I am working so hard not to do the same. Not that I yet have any “miracles” to offer, just that I refrain from sharing a list of our reasons to stay home that will inevitably sound like attack on their parental skills/love for letting their own child(ren) go off.
Disclaimer of course: I know public school is the only (or even perhaps right) option for some people. I think I am more frustrated by the unexamined expectation that *this is just what you do with your kids.*
Jay and I feel a near-moral obligation to keep our kids home, and so we (at least, I) feel frustrated by the emphasis of things (even as benign as Sesame Street) on going away to school and the hype of large crowds *just your own age* (and little adult supervision or interaction).
The more I research, the more I feel sure this is what we must do, and the more I *wish* I were the organizationally-gifted type.
I too feel strongly led to homeschool. One of the biggest reasons is perhaps because I was homeschooled all through high school (late I know!). It was SO GOOD! No more boring rambling teachers, I was able to go at my own pace, and my younger sibs graduated early because of this. I was allowed to do my schoolwork often in places that inspired me-outdoors. Lovely! My husband went to public school and has always wanted me to homeschool. Now that our sons are 4 and 2, I am doing a little preschool program with them in the mornings. It’s so simple, it has given me the confidence I needed. (I’m organizationally challenged too). I encourage you to continue to seek God and ask him for help! :)
My oldest are 4 and 2 also. I’ve just started teaching my 4-y-o to read. As in, did the first official lesson just two nights ago.
It makes all the difference in the world to know that my husband is 100% behind me. I get the idea I can actually do this.
I researched it and prayed. My husband and I decided that it was not the right thing to do. However, I researched and prepared. And who knows–come middle school, we may wind up doing it anyway!
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I like my BIL’s question applied to situations like these, too. “What does the Bible say?” Well, guess what, parents? It doesn’t say anything about it (as far as I know)! I guess, then, it’s up to each parental unit to decided how (notice I didn’t say whether) to apply Biblical principles to their parenting. :) Methodology hang-ups are one of my pet peeves. I wonder if I can tame my reaction by thinking that some personalities just can’t handle thinking there are alternatives to their ways.
Have you looked at http://www.universalpreschool.com/ ? I have only scratched the surface of this site, but I get their daily “clickschooling” links and have loved them. (my children are 11 and 1 1/2, so I have an idea of when/where I want to start with M, but need some refreshers!).
Enjoy… teaching them yourself is so very rewarding!
So far my research has pulled me toward Charlotte Mason. It’s an uncannily perfect fit for my personality.
Jay and I both grew up homeschooled and have a very personal connection to it.
By now I know that CM is notoriously weak on math, but I have other resources, and don’t doubt I can mix and match enough to make up what differences I need to.
It is times like these I am thankful I am not depending on my wisdom alone.