We are close to ending our second quarter lessons and I just can’t help but think, had I been homeschooling for all the wrong reasons, I might have given up on Day 1. We all have our own expectations, what we picture in our own head of how Homeschooling should look like. We all see that beautiful image of a school room, so dainty and clean, complete with all the materials you need with happy looking children, so excited to learn. Errrrrr. Nope, ain’t like that. It’s not what you see on TV, or Youtube, definitely not (ALL) you see on Facebook nor Instagram. Homeschooling is so much more, but today, let me share with you some of the common misconceptions about the Homeschooling these days.
- Homeschooling is NOT about ACADEMICS
It is not a means to make your children excel in academics, yes, that can be a plus for most children, but it doesn’t always work that way. We take advantage of this time that our children are young, so we, as parents, can mold their character with an eternal perspective. Our eyes are not set on earthly success, but a kind of success rooted in a personal relationship with God. We do not homeschool to raise excellent children who are very smart – this is not our goal.
- Homeschooling is NOT EASY
Surprise! It involves a lot of hard work. We don’t just “wing it!” You, as a parent, have to be disciplined to prepare for the lessons. You have to study! Of course you can’t teach something you don’t know.. (you know that right?). Again, let me emphasize, lesson preparation is paramount. You need to plan in advance, to make sure you do not lose track of your goals each school year, and to ensure your child gets that quality education.
It won’t be easy. There will be hard (very hard) days. Days when things just don’t work out the way you want them to. Life happens, you have a new baby, lose your househelp, someone gets sick, chores, chores, and never-ending chores. It will be hard. Exhausting to say the least. But by God’s grace, it ALWAYS works out. He gives us the strength we need, to go through each day. He gives us the wisdom to prioritize what we need to do first. He allows things to beautifully fall into place because He is God who cares. He is a God of order. And He is a God who loves.
- Homeschooling is NOT HOME EDUCATION
You see, a lot of people make the mistake of associating homeschooling with just like doing the lessons the same way you do in a classroom set-up. Think like loads of worksheets, endless copywork, whole day packed with lessons, and so on. You guys, it isn’t like that. It is building on that curiosity and developing a deeper love for learning. With this, we custom-fit the curriculum to our child’s personality and our own teaching style. We adapt to what we think will help them learn best.
Homeschooling does not equate to answering worksheets or exams. Instead, we read books, explore our surroundings, experiment, do crafts, NOT because we have to, but because we LOVE to. We do not feel the need to gauge if our child is learning because we see it right before our eyes — that is the magic of homeschooling.
- Homeschooling is not about YOU
Yes I am talking to you (and quite honestly, myself too). So what, if your child is 6 and cannot read yet, does that make you less of a parent? Making you feel inadequate? Or what if your child has learned to read at 3 years old, is that something you feel that should be credited to you? Hey Mom, let me talk some sense into you. Whatever your child knows or know nothing about now, it isn’t about you. Each child is unique and they learn differently. There is no need to compare yourself, or your child’s achievements to others. Homeschooling should be about finding what works for you and NOT fitting in to what the world says the standard should be. Let go of the guilt. Let go of the pride. Teach from the heart and rest in the Lord for He is in control.
- Homeschooling is NOT WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA SAYS IT IS
Imagine that room filled with natural light, complete with all the best wooden toys one can find. Shelves overflowing with great and expensive literature. Craft materials neatly organized in a beautiful storage bin. A lush garden within a huge backyard.. isn’t it amazing? Well, yes! I’d love to have that too, but reality is, with my limited budget, I can only spend so much. And THAT IS OKAY. No, I do not need a fancy school room, or a huge yard, or all the best materials. The most important thing I need is the Bible. For what I need is a child with heart that joyfully obeys. A child with a heart that accepts correction and discipline. A child who understands that success in life is not measured by material things. A child who finds rest and peace in the Lord. That is what I need, and the Bible is my guide to help me in my parenting. I need my child to understand her own sinfulness and that she is in need of a savior, who is Jesus Christ.
- Homeschooling is NOT A FAD
The Homeschooling movement did not begin in 2000’s. It has begun since the world was created. There weren’t any schools before and yet, our ancestors have built lives of their own. It has always been there and have just increased in popularity lately, due to what? You guessed it right! Social Media. So, no, do not be swayed into thinking it is just a FAD because it isn’t. I personally know of parents who were also homeschooled, and are now homeschooling their own children. There are also accounts from books I’ve read wherein, the grandparents were the first homeschoolers of their family. It isn’t new or popular because many celebrities have chosen to homeschool. It is here and it is growing because it is EFFECTIVE. Because time and time again, we have seen the positive impact it has made in the lives and education of people.
Matthew 16:26 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?
Homeschooling may have become too mainstream, but in my heart, it will always have that little space. That pure unadulterated portion of homeschooling which drew me close to it. What made me interested in it, and what is now driving me to advocate for it. It is this – Homeschooling is my own little way of getting to the heart of my child. To ensure I do whatever I can while they are under my sphere of authority, to teach them about the Holiness of God, about our standing before Him, that we can never in any way pay for our sins to be right with Him, and that Jesus Christ’s death on the cross on our behalf is the only answer. If I teach my children diligently about God and one day they come to saving faith, then, I know I have done right homeschooling them. For protecting them from the temptations of this world — as I help shape their character, beliefs, values and their relationship with God. These are the things truly essential for a Homeschool Success. This is what Homeschooling is really about.