Monday, January 10, 2011

Are You Considering Home Schooling?

I had decided to home school my children while I was still in high school. I had read an article in "Mother Earth News" and knew then it was exactly the best thing for my family. Then I graduated, went to college, worked, got married, and had children. It wasn't until then that I remembered about home schooling. My husband, though, was far from agreeing in with my great ideas. He went to the seminars, heard the stories, but was far from convinced.

Our oldest was registered for kindergarten, and just a few days before he was to get on the bus, we received a phone call from one of his friend and former pastor. Bob said, "Don't you dare put that child on the bus!" and after a long conversation, had changed my husband's outlook. The day before our son was to start class, my husband decided we would home school.

That was more than 15 years ago, and I can honestly say it was the best decision we ever made. I watched our children grow, learn and mature with a responsibility that I knew I didn't have at their age. They have a love for reading and learning that didn't seem to die as they became teenagers.

I won't say our decision was easy. We had no family or friend support. We were considered crazy, radical, too good for the norm, and were harming our children. How would the children socialize since they wouldn't be with their peers all day? How would we be able to teach them if we didn't have a teaching degree? How dare we think we knew more than the professionals! We were told they would never function in society and were going to be "backwards" because of our lack of skill and knowledge. Sigh...

Thank the good Lord we never listened, but followed what we thought was best, but with lack of support there were days I doubted myself and what I was doing. The worst time I doubted our decision was during my son's senior year. He was applying to colleges and I allowed that awful fear of how we had hurt his education creep inside my head. I wondered if we really had made a mistake and ruined his whole life...

That was two years ago. He was accepted to all the colleges he applied to, but I still worried wondering about the socialization issue. I again had no need to worry. He adjusted very well, carried a full load, did work studies, and made the Dean's List both semesters his freshman year. This past semester, he made President's List and was elected President of the History Club. He is considering a double minor or possibly a double major and then on to get his Master's Degree. He has been awarded a few scholarships and now has another soon to be awarded based on his grade performance.

This is our last year of home schooling. Our daughter is in her senior year and has received her acceptance letter to the university she really wanted to attend. She has worked since she could get her hands on working papers, and is employed at a great Christian camp/retreat. She works as both support staff and counselor. She also volunteers and works with children during her free time.

Both children have surpassed our wildest dreams. They have become people that we are very, very proud of. Am I bragging? Ummmmm - I guess I am, but at the same time, I want to share our family's success story. I want to let others know that their children won't be damaged, unsocialized, or backwards. They will end up being adults you can be proud of!!!

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