Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The H Word

You know the one. Homeschool. Yes, we are planning to homeschool our kids. No, I'm not offended if you aren't. 
I want to talk about this today, because I want to "clear the air". Before we decided to homeschool, I had no idea that it was so controversial! I had no idea that people were so easily offended about the ways that someone else chooses to educate their child. I guess I was just naive, but I had no clue. I realize that homeschooling is not the "popular" choice, and not something that many people know a lot about and that is, I would imagine, part of the reason why it is uncomfortable for people. I think there are a lot of predispositions about homeschooling that people have, and certain associations. Maybe good, maybe bad, maybe neutral. 
I can't speak for all homeschooling families when I say this, but speaking for our family here...I do not think that there is one right way to school. I don't think every family should homeschool, I don't think every family should go to public school. I don't think that education is a "one size fits all" thing. Because this is my opinion on it, I am not, in the slightest, offended if you are not choosing to educate your children the way that I am choosing to educate mine. I don't think that you are less of a parent. I don't think that you don't care about your child's well being. I don't think that you aren't building into you child spiritually. What I do think is that you are a great parent and you are choosing to educate your child in the way that feels best to your family. Unfortunately, I feel like often times when I give any of the reasons why we are choosing to homeschool, they can easily be misconstrued and people are offended because they think that we are judging them for not choosing that. Please know this is not the case. I can't reiterate enough that every reason we are choosing this is a very personal one. Hypothetically, if I said that we want to homeschool so that I can eat lunch with my kids every day (this is not a reason for us...hypothetical), someone is going to be offended and think that I think that they are a terrible parent for not eating lunch with their child every day. No! No, no no. All of the reasons why we are wanting to do this is because it works for our family. It feels right for our family. It is something that we have been convicted of. 
I don't want parents who choose to send their children to public, private, charter, boarding or any other kind of school to ever be offended or feel judged by a homeschool parent for that choice! And in return, I don't want a homeschooling parent to ever feel judged or be offended by a parent who sends their kids to school! It's a personal choice, and one that I'm sure many many parents weigh the goods and bads with. I know a lot of families who spend months and years researching, praying, asking questions and trying to decide how to school their kids. It's not something most parents take lightly, I assume. So instead of putting our guards right up when someone talks about schooling their child a different way than we are, let's take them down and listen. Support. Encourage. 
I used to be a teacher. I think that there are a lot of wonderful things about public schools. I never worked in a private school, but I know there are wonderful things about them as well. I was raised going to public school from K-12. I am not unfamiliar with it in the slightest. My husband also went to public school. We both had average public school experiences that were fine and well...nothing out of the ordinary. So please know that we do not hate school. We do not hate teachers. We do not hate parents who choose something different than we do. 
With all that being said, I would love to share the reasons why we are planning to homeschool. And I'd love to share them in a way that won't make any one who reads it feel any negative emotion. I really felt like I needed to put a "disclaimer" here first, so that readers can walk into this with an open mind and know my heart. 
So, to sum up the longest disclaimer in the world: We are choosing to homeschool our children. This is what's right for our family, not necessarily for yours. Please know that I love and support all parents and don't think that any one form of education is better than another. Just like anything else, they all have their pros and cons!
Who is ready to talk homeschooling?! 
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3 comments:

  1. I can't wait to hear more about this!

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  2. I would love to hear your thoughts on this! I've never really considered homeschooling my future kids. My husband and I always talked about sending them to private school, but I'm in a phase of life right now where everyone I know is having kids and I am loving soaking up all the info I can now, so that I can be more informed down the road when we're making big decisions about parenting!

    Loving your new blog, by the way! :)

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  3. Looking forward to hear! God has definitely helped me to see that school choice is a conviction- one that varies for each family. And like you said, not one way is the "right" way! We feel extremely blessed that our public school system here is pretty much "private school" like. Neighborhood schools and an amazing, intentional district. People MOVE here for the schools! However, being a teacher, I feel like I go back and forth SO often on what is best for our kiddos. And even based on personality of the kiddo!! It's just another place that we need to be so careful and prayerful about what we do! Sadly, I feel like the adoption of the new Common Core for many states (includes my state) has added a big "judgment" piece to being a Christian and sending your kiddos to public school. Like you, I just get sad when it becomes "our way is better than yours because..." :/ Your disclaimer is spot- on! :)

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