As we embark on a fresh year, I have been looking back. It’s just that time of year, isn’t it? We look at how things went last year, both in achievements and losses, in areas from academic to finances to weight loss. We are looking beyond the next few weeks to the whole upcoming year as we plan field trips and projects. Our homeschooling has touched every area of our lives – in both good ways and not-so-good ways. We are at the point where some families look at their homeschooling journey and wonder if they should continue. While we do evaluate things a few times a year, not homeschooling is not something I seriously considered (at least not since the very beginning). With only a little reflection, I can tell you, it’s worth it!
When it seems that all troubles point to homeschooling as the cause and maybe it’s time to quit, I say stop! It’s time to remember why we homeschool, even after all these years. When all you see is the mess and overdue library books (or worse, you’re not seeing them because they are lost) it can be easy to get discouraged and imagine how nice your home would be if you sent your children off to school. Wait a minute! Having a nice looking home and plenty of money in my account has never been a top priority for me. Not to say our house lacks cleanliness, but the messes that seem to accompany learning and exploration might scare some among my friends and family.
Now, looking back over our 12 official years of homeschooling (and realizing that we actually began when we began having children), there are so many more reasons than religious freedom and teaching our children how to think. We have the freedom to teach each child to read when they are ready and in the way that is most effective for them (once we figure that out). We are free to use the Bible as the basis for our studies – beyond just the expected use for ancient history. We may choose to use whatever curriculum we wish to – no committee to approve (only our budget limits our choices). We could even make up our curriculum as is the case for one daughter’s current study of culinary science.
Sure we have doubts that we are doing enough, will we be the limiting factor in our children’s potential? Those are doubts every and any parent has. We have different budget categories than families that don’t homeschool – curricula and library fees to name a few. We may have piles of books littering most horizontal surfaces and possible science experiments in the fridge (or garden). But we have so much more.
We have so much time together as a family. We learn together; YouTube has been a great resourced for car repair, tree grafting, and orchard pruning. We are present and celebrate each milestone, from toddler days through learning to drive. We, all of the members of our family, are here to encourage each other. Nothing warms a mama-heart more than to see one sibling help another finally understand a tough math concept or getting better with their reading.
As our older girls grow and start developing interests that could lead to careers, we are able to give them freedom to explore that. With our flexible schedule and ability to connect with others in different ways, the girls are getting a look at just what is possible. And what the real work looks like. There is so much out there in the world, why wait to explore it? We are just beginning to really see the benefits.
I am so blessed that we have another 10 or so years at this. Homeschooling is such a unique way of life, there is nothing like it in the world.
Now, let us see what my fellow homeschool bloggers have to say about The Reasons Why We Homeschool.
Note: all posts will be live after 8 am EST.
5 Reasons to Homeschool High School by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds
Weird Homeschoolers by Kim R. @ Good Sweet Love
How We Make Homeschooling a Lifestyle by Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Our Ever Evolving Homeschool Story by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool
5 Reasons You Will Want to Homeschool by Michele@ Family, Faith and Fridays
How Our Homeschool Came To Be (and why we continue) by Sabrina @ Kids, Crunch, and Christ
Home Education – 10 Reasons we keep going…even when it’s hard by Lizzy @ Peaches@Home
So… Tell Me Again Why You Homeschool? by Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road
Virtual Homeschool Fair 2018 – Week 1 – Why do I Homeschool by Joelle@Homeschooling For His Glory
Homeschool Reasons: Bullies, Faith and More by Annette @ A Net In Time
In Pursuit of Purpose by Laura @ Four Little Penguins
A Long Time Ago . . . Why We Decided To Homeschool by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
The Why Behind Hopkins Homeschool by Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool
5 Reasons We Love Homeschooling by Brittney @ Mom’s Heart
Why We Homeschool – It’s What We Do by Kristen H @ Sunrise to Sunset
Why we Home Educate and Extra Benefits by Sarah@Delivering Grace
Homeschooling: The Big WHY? by Lisa @ True North Homeschool Academy at Golden Grasses
Regaining Your Homeschool Focus by Jen @ A Helping Hand Homeschool
Why do we homeschool? by Dana @ Life Led Homeschool
Our ìHomeschoolî Why by Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning
Because Life is Precious by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens
1998 vs. 2018: Why We Homeschool by Debra @ Footprints in the Butter