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I'm a wife to my "Mr. Right". A momma of five. A maker of slow food and simple living. A collector of memories, a keeper of books, and a champion for books that make memories. An addict who likes my half-and-half with a splash of coffee. A fractured pot transformed by the One Who makes broken things beautiful. I heart homeschooling, brake for libraries, and am glad you're here with me on the journey! Be sure to subscribe to my daily digest via email or RSS feed. Or, follow along with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google +, Youtube, or Pinterest.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Why Do We Homeschool?, Part 3




We Homeschool because we believe it affords the very best possible and most well-rounded educational experience.


In truth, this answer can be broken down into two parts. 

First and foremost, homeschooling provides me the opportunity to develop a LIFETIME love of learning within each of my children.  As a homeschooling mom, I have such an AWESOME privilege of creating a lesson out of LIFE...not just a textbook and workbook page.  My husband and I can incorporate so many more hands-on projects and real-life applications than any traditional school environment simply because we are not limited by a district-directed time frame or lesson schedule. 

Because I am not bound to teach to the "average" so that thirty or more students can keep up, I can skip over those areas that my children have already mastered and have time to focus on that which they have not.  Or if I so chose, I can spend additional time on those mastered areas to better cultivate them.  My children can spend their time on "learning"...not reviewing content for the fourth or fifth time simply because the person sitting next to them needs the extra review.  And on the flip-side, they don't need to be pushed on to the next lesson when they have not completely grasped the last one.

If my son becomes fascinated with the details surrounding the Boston Tea Party during our study of the Colonial Era, I can choose to camp there for an extended period of time.  I do not have to move on to the next "paragraph" simply because it comes next on the page.  I can seize an opportunity to explore a particular area to its fullest in order to establish a thorough knowledge of the subject.  

Obviously, this does not mean that I have license to skip times tables simply because little Sweetie Pea does not necessarily have an inborn passion for them.  But, it does mean that I can prioritize my focus throughout the coming years to help bring some of those "inborns" to the forefront while helping to create an enthusiasm for those subjects and tasks that require perseverance...like times tables.

This brings me to the second part of my two-fold answer...
God has uniquely created each one of my children...has given them certain innate strengths and weaknesses that He can, if He sees fit, use for their good and His glory.  It is our goal that by the time our children leave our home, they will be fully equipped and prepared to answer ANY calling that God places in their lives.  That is not to say that they will know EVERYTHING there is to know about EVERYTHING.  But rather, that they will have a well-rounded, working knowledge of many things and a desire to learn the things that they do not yet know.


I know many homeschool parents who determine to see their child(ren) become doctors, lawyers, or politicians someday.  And while, those are all very noble callings, we do not choose to limit our children and their future vocations to what the world views as "success."  Although it would bring me much joy to see my daughter become a doctor, it would bring just as much joy to see her chose to be a stay-at-home mom or a secretary or a sales clerk at a local department store...as long as she was obeying the CALLING that God placed in her life.  

This is where homeschooling comes into play.  One of the many benefits of homeschooling my children is that I can see firsthand the natural talents and abilities that God has given to them, their natural likes and dislikes, or their curiosities for one particular avenue over the next and tailor their education to fertilize those passions and strengths.  

I am so grateful that during their latter years of homeschooling, my in-laws recognized the natural desire within the Hubs to work with his hands.  Wisely, they chose to cultivate this innate skill and sought out a blue collar apprenticeship program for him.  Since, as homeschoolers they could adjust his school day to fit the needs of this new venture, he could work a full-time day while still completing his school responsibilities in the evening.  For the final few years of his schooling journey, the Hubs was able to learn a very useful trade that although never became his life-vocation, has helped to provide a supplemental income during difficult financial times.

I have a friend who homeschools her children, most of which are in their teens.  She, too, has determined to use homeschooling as an opportunity to develop the natural calling in her children's lives.  One of her daughters has shown a long-standing interest in missions.  A flexible homeschooling schedule has allowed her to send her daughter on numerous extended foreign mission trips to get some practical training on the field.  Her son, on the other hand, shows an aptitude for mechanics and has been able to use this learning time as an opportunity to minister to others as he gains hands-on experience by servicing the vehicles of church members and neighborhood friends.

I hope that as my children near those same adolescent years, I, too, will be able to see some of their natural bents and provide them with numerous opportunities to develop them.


For the rest of the story...

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