More Schooling Options: Homeschooling

Posted by  | Tuesday, November 3, 2009  at 6:00 AM  
This post is written by Leah's friend Margaret. She is a stay at home mom to two children, Jeremy and Miranda. She has been married to her husband Alan for a long time (ha,ha - Leah is writing this bio and I don't know how many years they've been married!). Alan is an adjunt professor at Southeastern Seminary. Margaret is a servant-minded friend with a great sense of humor. Her family just returned from a weeklong visit to Disney World with their best friends. Here are her responses to the questions:
1. What are the top three reasons you decided to homeschool?
For years we said we would never homeschool our kids. Homeschooling was not something that we felt was right for us. My best friend in GA homeschooled but our son loved school and I was very involved in his school.(Helping in the classroom 2-3 times a month, volunteered in the school library weekly). I really loved the school and the teachers in GA. When our son was in the 3rd grade we moved to NC. He really had a hard time adjusting to the school here. After being called to the school to pick up my 3rd grader several times because he had migraine headaches with no medical reasons, meetings with teachers and the school counselor, advice from homeschooling parents, and a lot of prayer, after 8 weeks of school in NC, we kept him home after Christmas break(no migraines and none since). Our daughter was in kindergarten but she didn't go back to public school either.
2. Why didn't you send your kids to public school? To Christian school?
We did send both kids to public school. I believe that if we had stayed in GA they would both probably still be in public school. In the community that we lived in the parents were very involved in the schools and both my kids had Christian teachers. Christian school was not an option because we could not afford the tuition.
3. What is the best part about homeschooling?
I love being actively involved in my kids daily lives. If you had asked me before we started homeschooling I would have told you I was involved in my kids lives but nothing like now.
4. What is the worst part?
Honestly, being with my kids all the time. I know that they get tired of me always being there. We do try to have some time for all of us to do different things without mother/brother/sister being there.
5. What is the biggest benefit to your child by homeschooling?
I have some self esteem problems and I really want my kids to know that no matter what they do I will always love them and more importantly that their heavenly father will always love them and be there for them. I hope that I can teach my kids that they will never be perfect because we do sin but that even more than me God will always love them.
It has also helped me to grow and become more confident in what God has asked me to do at this time in my life.
6. What is the biggest deficit?
I used to always worry that I was making my kids "stupid." A good friend told me to stop worrying because my kids were going to learn in spite of me. My son is in high school now and he does take several "outside" classes now. If there is something you are not comfortable teaching there are other options besides teaching them yourself (trading off subjects with other moms, enrichment classes, co-ops, online classes to name some).
Also, please make sure your kids are around other kids their age. Socialization should not be a problem for homeschoolers. You as a parent have to give your child opportunities to be around other children( homeschooled and non-homeschooled).
7. What advice would you give to a family with preschool-age children working through this decision right now?
Do not let anyone else make this decision for you. You are not a horrible parent or christian if you decide not to homeschool. Only homeschool if you feel this is what God is asking you to do. Remember, you are not following God's will for you if you allow others to pressure you into homeschooling. Please know that homeschooling is hard but if it is what God wants for you, He will help you through all the struggles.

1 comment:

Meg said...

Margaret, I appreciate your very balanced viewpoint. I was in public school in elementary and then homeschooled during middle school because the middle school was so rough that my parents didn't think I would be able to learn well there. Then I went to public school for high school because it was a great school. I really feel like my parents were wise and I thoroughly enjoyed each type of schooling.

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