I cannot imagine not educating my children myself. It is a part of who I am and who we are as a family. Since my first child was a toddler I was a home educator, I just wouldn’t have called it that. Every experience was shared and every opportunity for teaching him something new was taken up and throughly enjoyed. It feels so natural. Not that it isn’t hard sometimes, but what isn’t that is worth your time?
I meet people to whom home education is foreign, and it always interesting to me to explore the ways in which we are the same, and those in which we are different. We just go about life, and parenting in our own way. This “part of who we are” has served to make our family closer than we could possibly be without it, and I think it has also taught us to learn one another as individuals and appreciate the differences and likenesses between us as people. Spending practically every moment together also forces you to form comfortable boundaries, as well as a healthy respect for the different personalities you have. It allows you to realize just how unique each person is – and it certainly gives you lots of opportunities to help one another grow! On the lighter side, it creates many inside jokes and harmless teasing about who each of us is. Pure fun.
OUR HOME EDUCATION FAVS
We like Sonlight Curriculum, for their great books (a lot of Newberry titles) and their philosophy, which is right in line with mine. www.sonlight.com
We are a reading family, and even though my older child has already heard all the books that my younger child is hearing, he listens in on every one, even though it extends the length of time he spends in the books each day. I love that! It makes me smile every time he reminds me not to start without him, or asks which book is next when we finish one. I think it is a good thing, too, that he hear them again, since you get different things out of a good read at different ages. There are also those books that he and I know are soooo great that we can’t let Dad miss out, so we save those readings for evening and he listens in as eagerly as they 🙂 I recently told a friend that if we had to agree on one book to save from our shelves if all were going to be destroyed (the Bibles aren’t in this shelf LOL!), that it would unanimously be Walk the World’s Rim by Betty Baker. I’m not sure if you’ll find it in a library or bookstore, but don’t miss out on this story. It is of course available through Sonlight.
We also use AVKO Sequential Spelling, Singapore Math, Keys to Math, Apologia Science, and whatever else I run across that seems to fit the way my kids learn and think.
I have retired (and yes, I miss it)! My son went to public high school and my daughter is currently enrolled. They both needed to experience a strict schedule (I know – yuk! They still hate that part), teachers, and learn to manage assignments and free time (when there’s so much less of it).
Both the kids have done very well academically and otherwise. The hardest things for them to deal with has been the general immaturity of their peers, and the distrust that many adults seem to have for teenagers! They have formed great relationships with some teachers who saw past their age 😉
College is going well for my son, and he is working a part time job as well. He’s becoming an adult contributor to the household when it comes to responsibilities, and we have all adjusted to having a different relationship with him, because he has grown and matured so much more in the last year.
My daughter is participating in a program which will allow her to graduate high school in two years rather than four. Advanced classes, less wasted time. We plan to check out how colleges are going to respond to that before she completes the last year, which will begin this fall.
I’d take in a child to homeschool right now, I miss it so much. Maybe God will work that at. Maybe he’ll move me past it. Haha. We’ll see.