Welcome!  
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.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Why I'm Wasting My Master's in Education to Homeschool: Meet Jessica

Why I'm Wasting My Master's in Education to Homeschool

Written by Jessica

I am a former elementary school teacher.
Turned stay-at-home.
Mama to three children under eight.
And I'm "wasting" my master's degree to homeschool.
(This post contains affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for full details.)

How I got here


For my husband and I, raising our children at home and homeschooling them were non-negotiables. We looked forward to those things since before our firstborn joined us. Today, parenting and homeschooling bring us more joy and blessings than we had ever imagined they would.

I enjoyed being a teacher, but I never loved it. 

In my heart I always wanted to be a mother, and a part of me was always waiting until that time came. While teaching, I worked with many hard-working and talented teachers and got to see a lot of the good that can come from learning in a traditional classroom and school setting. At the same time, I also saw a lot of what doesn’t work in schools and a lot of things that I strongly didn’t want for my own children someday. Many of these experiences shaped why and how we home educate today. Homeschooling isn’t for everyone, but it’s what is best for our family and it’s what we feel called to do. We count it both a blessing and a privilege to live the homeschool life.


Why I'm Wasting My Master's in Education to Homeschool

Our days


Our homeschooling days look like organized chaos against the backdrop of a mostly-well-organized home! They are noisy and busy, but good. My homeschooling style is very eclectic. There are things that I appreciate about lots of different methods (especially traditional, Charlotte Mason, Montessori, and unit-studies) - but there isn’t one method that I like well enough, or agree with so completely, that I would subscribe to alone. Ultimately, I think that an ideal home education combines a family’s values with best-practices in education and with teaching materials that are specifically suited to each child’s unique interests, needs, and abilities.

In our homeschool, we strive to provide a rich and varied learning environment with an emphasis on high-quality literature, hands-on and multi-sensory activities, art, nature study and appreciation, and time outdoors. We believe in the value of interest-based learning, adapting and individualizing instruction to the needs and abilities of each child, and teaching for mastery. I do carefully select curriculum and supplemental materials, but we also believe that much important learning comes from conversations, real life experiences, free play, natural discovery and exploration, and opportunities for creativity. 

We use some secular materials that don’t detract from our values, such as All About Reading and All About Spelling

We use Christian materials, like BJU Mathematics and BJU English

We do multi-age unit-studies together for subjects like geography and science.
We use literature for history. 

And we read lots of stories, create many arts and crafts, do fun hands-on science, and enjoy plenty of time outside.

We love homeschooling. 

Why I'm Wasting My Master's in Education to Homeschool


A wasted education


With our children still very young, one of the things we most appreciate is that we can provide slower and more savored childhoods for them. We’re so grateful that they can spend every day together, not apart, and share those days as best friends. My husband works from home, and so we love that we both get to witness all the moments of their childhoods and that we are not apart for hours and hours every day – instead, we can be together making memories as a family. 

More than ever these days, we value that we can pray and talk about God and our Christian faith with openness and purpose. Our children can grow-up more slowly and we can more easily filter the world’s values, which are not our own, through our faith and our values. I love that I can tailor each child’s education to their interests, needs, and abilities, and I can see the benefits of that in their learning. Homeschooling comes with many challenges, to be sure, but I believe that the blessings of this way of life are far greater. 

Why I'm Wasting My Master's in Education to Homeschool  

Years and years ago, while working on my master’s degree, homeschooling wasn’t even a thought in my mind. Today, some might call my choice a waste of my education. But, I’m so grateful that God led our family to this journey! Our little homeschool is the classroom that I’ve been called to, and I can’t imagine anything better.




13 comments:

  1. What a wonderful journey to be on. I feel so blessed each day to homeschool my crew.
    Blessings, Dawn

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    Replies
    1. It truly is a wonderful journey! Blessings to you too, Dawn.

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  2. I too am a home schooling mama with a M.ed so I can relate. Thanks for sharing, it's nice to know that I'm not wasting my degree as I once (or twice, maybe three times) told

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    1. Absolutely, it's not a waste at all! Blessings.

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  3. Me too! I have a B.S. in Elem/Special Ed. and a Masters in Ed. Technology. And I'm homeschooling 1 boy. What you said about enjoying teaching but not loving it, and waiting for motherhood to come along resonates deeply. We aren't wasting a second of our education; our kids are benefiting daily from all that we have learned! God bless you!

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    Replies
    1. My degree is in nursing and I understand this as well! People still ask why I don't work in the hospital because I could provide actually more than my husband currently make...they don't understand. I enjoyed nursing but I LOVE this...this is my passion and my calling and no amount of money can change that!

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    2. "We aren't wasting a second of our education; our kids are benefiting daily from all that we have learned!" - Yes!
      and
      "I LOVE this...this is my passion and my calling and no amount of money can change that!" - Yes!

      I couldn't agree with you both more. Thank you for your comments, and God bless!

      Delete
  4. Me too! Master's degree in Reading! And not wasted for one minute, because both of our children have benefitted from my teaching experience! Sometimes I get discouraged when I think about how anyone can homeschool, and maybe I should have taken something else in college. But then I remind myself that I may not have had the courage to homeschool, if I didn't KNOW what goes on in classrooms and that we can help our children grow better at home!

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    Replies
    1. I agree with everything you've said here, too! Having a background in teaching definitely gave me the courage as well to jump into homeschooling, and I'm really grateful for that.

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  5. Me too! I have my degree in Business Education. They never told me in college that Business teacher either die or retire from their position. So I never found a teaching job. When my hubby suggested homeschooling I thought he was crazy at first and that I would never be able to do it. Now many, many years later I find myself teaching 8th grade and 3rd grade to our kids this year and I love doing school at our kitchen table and teaching them about Jesus!

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  6. That's beautiful, Cassandra! Thank you for sharing!

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