Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The First of the Last (My Top 10 Favorite things about Home Schooling)

Today is the first day of our last year of home schooling. This year will complete 29 years of home educating my offspring.

When I started, I had four kids. My oldest was 5 years old, my youngest 8 months. I started our home school in 1987, a time when not that many people were home schooling. We got a lot of questions if we were out during the day. I welcomed every question and was happy to answer them because I felt very privileged to be able to home school.

Learning came naturally to all my kids, which made home schooling one of the easiest things I've ever done. I learned early on that each one of the kids learned best at their own pace and this took all the pressure off to meet some criteria set by the world. I let them learn their way whenever I could. They naturally fell into a learning routine that really set the pace for all the kids as they came along and grew.

Learning became part of life, not limited to school hours. We learned how to incorporate official learning into everything we did, giving credit-worthy validity to every day. On trips, they learned to read a map and navigate. They learned to observe as we played games on the road with the landscape around us, along with other cars and road signs. They learned harmony as we sang on road trips.

In light of all this, and in light of the blog post I wrote a few years ago about 25 things I learned in 25 years of home schooling, I want to share my top ten favorite things about home schooling:

1. I got to spend all day every day with my kids, my favorite people on the planet.

2. My kids learned to be independent thinkers, not ones that go along with the herd. I think this is one major key to anyone's success.

3. We loved not being bound by a school schedule. We could vacation while the rest of the world went to school.

4. Learning is a lifestyle, not at all limited to the formal class room.

5. No homework, ever.

6. We got to teach theology with no restrictions.

7. The kids got to interact more with adults than with kids their own age. This is a huge benefit to home schooling.

8. The kids were able to pursue their own interests and I could tailor their curriculum to meet their individual needs.

9. The kids got school credit for making dinner or baking cookies.

10. No school on birthdays.

There you have it, my top 10 favorite things about home schooling.
As I made this list, I had to force myself to keep the list to 10 things because there are many, many more things I love about home schooling.
Next September, it will be very odd for me to not be starting classes yet again.
So, this last year of our home school, I will savor every moment, as I've tried to do for the past 28 years.
If you're thinking about home schooling, by all means, do it.

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