I love being with my kids. Even when they were little and making messes and screaming and crying, I didn't want to send them off to spend all their days with someone else. I wanted to see them learn. I wanted to be the one to see that
"light bulb moment" in their lives when they "got it" as we learned together. That was my #1 reason for home schooling.
When I started home schooling back in 1987, it was not a very popular thing to do. We only had 4 kids at the time, but were already receiving criticism from Christians for having "so many" kids. Clearly they had no effect on us since we went on to have 4 more. Some said I had "real nerve" home schooling "all those kids." Their arguments against home schooling ranged from me never getting a break to fearing my kids were going to be isolated.
Isolation was the furthest thing from my mind. I could not wrap my mind around why they would think that. My kids were out in the neighborhood playing with other kids, riding their bikes all over, involved at church, involved at an assisted living home and involved in an active home school support group that I started. They played sports, performed in plays, participated in science fairs, sang in concerts and spent time together.
They learned to bake from scratch, cook dinner for 10, set a table right, freeze vegetables, plant and keep a garden and a host of other life skills that serve them well today.
Part of our parenting style was minimizing chaos so that our kids didn't have to feel constant pressure. We spent most evenings at home where the kids would perform dance or gymnastic routines, magic trick shows and piano concerts for us. Some evenings were spent viewing everything they could find under the microscope and the time flew. Some evenings were spent outside looking through the telescope to see Jupiter's moons or a lunar eclipse up close. We wanted our kids to have time to build big Lego bridges and villages, to throw a Frisbee in the back yard till the lightening bugs came out and lie on the grass watching the clouds. Home schooling allowed us to keep chaos at a minimum even with a family our size.
And now these kids....oh, my word, these kids. They have gone to college. They are starting businesses. One is home schooling. Another reached a career milestone much younger than most could. Two of them served in the USMC and another is thinking about it. But, mostly, these kids are kind. They are generous. They are sensitive. They are polite. They are mine. I am blessed beyond comprehension.
Home schooling was one of the best decisions I ever made.
If you're a young mom or dad and on the fence about home schooling, I say go for it.
You will not regret home schooling.
Now, I have to go find something else to do.
I have a few ideas!