So, we have decided to homeschool this next year. I have thought of homeschooling my little ones since before they were born. At first it was the fear of all the negative influences that happens at school. I was scared to send my sweet, innocent 5 year old off to Kindergarten and have him come home with a whole “new” vocabulary and lots of questions.
As the years have passed by I have really enjoyed the schools my kids have attended. The teachers have been great and the friends and families we have met are wonderful. Our choice to homeschool now has been made difficult because of how great the public schools are in the area where we live.
Now, the question of homeschooling has become more of a lifestyle choice. It fits into what we want for our kids. I miss Jakob when he is gone all day. I want him home with me, I feel like I have so much more to teach him. We want our evenings back. When Jakob gets home from school he has such a limited amount of time before he needs to go to bed. We have homework, reading, dinner, chores, scripture study, etc. It is hard to fit in free play (which I think every child needs) and family time.
I want to teach my kids to work. They are capable of so much and I feel like I don’t have the time to teach them how to really work on a consistent basis. I want my kids to learn what they are excited about learning when they are excited about learing it. I want to explore and work with their individual interest. I want to have time to read and discuss with them more. To teach them values throughout the day. I want to work with them to form habits that will last a lifetime.
So, we have decided to homeschool. Like I said earlier, it has been a tough decision to make. I have to admit I’m scared to death to do it. I’m scared of what people will say. I’m scared to take on all that responsibility. I’m scared that I will get burnt out. I’m scared I’ll miss the mark and my kids won’t get the education they need. So many fears. But, I keep going back to the way I feel. I feel like this answers so many of my personal concerns for the way I want to raise my children. I feel that it is an answer to prayer. I feel that it is the right thing for us to do.
So, this is what I know so far. We will classically educate our children. We will be following the Thomas Jefferson Educational Philosophy. We will start this next school year. So many people ask about socialization when we talk about homeschooling. We will have the kids involved in a homeschooling coop, sports, music classes, swimming, dance, scouting, 4H, and a number of other extracurricular activities throughout the years. We will also have friends and cousins over as often as possible. When they hit the teenage years they will be more involved in the homeschooling coops and extracurricular activities. We will just be able to pick and choose exactly what will work for us, depending on their personal interest and what they need.
So that is an introduction to our plan. I know I’ll have lots more to share as I prepare and begin this next phase in our family life.