I find myself really excited about something I never thought I would do – I mean NEVER. I’ve been seriously thinking about homeschooling. My daughter has had an amazing year at public school (Kindergarten) and her teacher is great. I do not subscribe to the belief that Christians should not be in public school – I think that is very limiting to the work that God may possibly want to do. So far, my daughter has gone to a private Christian preschool (because it was free for us ) and a public school for Kindergarten – both great experiences. Before our kids hit school age, we had decided that we would consider their education year-by-year and child-by-child. My reasons for considering home schooling are really three-fold – ok, four:
1.We are moving and I don’t know how long we’ll be at the next home, so the thought of uprooting my daughter again in a few years after she’s established herself, seems unkind.
2. Don’t want her to be in the new school district where we’ll be living.
3. Mary really wants to be home schooled and I feel that is the direction God is leading me.
4. Another (and at this point, the strongest) – I’m beginning to notice in my children the natural progression of learning when they’re interested and able – and not pushing them into a mold that could somehow thwart their personal growth instead of helping it flourish. I’ve noticed this especially in my son, Seve 3 1/2. While my daughter is on a quest to do everything better than everyone else, my son could care less; he is happily following his own path in his own time. This used to frustrate me (control freak) as I wanted him to be at the level “I think” he should be. But, I’m learning, you can’t rush learning or it won’t really happen. This week he sat down and got out a puzzle and did the whole thing by himself. I looked at him in amazement and my husband took a double-take “did he just do that by himself.” My son beamed – yes, he had. I’ve been trying to get him interested in puzzles forever, but he wasn’t interested. Now, he’s not only interested, but him mind is able to go there.
One method of homeschooling I’m considering most is Unschooling. I had never heard of it, but a friend of mine mentioned it and it got me curious. I’ve been busy picking people’s brains about it and doing research and I’m amazed by it and scared at the same time. It’s a very organic approach to learning that traditionally does not use curriculum but instead allows the kids to initiate what they learn and when they learn it, depending on their interests. Eventually it branches out, naturally, into all areas allowing the child to learn with enthusiasm and therefore retain the knowledge. It is really mindblowing and has taken me back to my childhood and bringing to mind how much I loved learning – and how very much I did on my own. I loved to learn and was constantly reading, doing my girl scout projects, looking through my microscope, heading to the mountains with my dad and the Astronomy Club to look at the stars.
I want my kids to have this experience where learning is fun and natural. I’m not going to fool myself into thinking that everyday is going to be one moment of bliss after another, but honestly, I’m extremely excited.